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The Kings of Oak Springs - Episode 44 - Celebrate Oak Springs
Celebrate Oak Springs!
Karl and Katherine King attended the Celebrate Oak Springs event
The 2nd Annual “Celebrate Oak Springs” Banquet was held at the Community Building on Saturday night, January 28 (the fourth Saturday) by the Oak Springs Chamber of Commerce. Karl and Katherine King were invited because of his position on the School Board. The Food Committee provided a fine catered meal courtesy of several of the local businesses. President Simeon Bishop presided over the program that focused on new and expanded businesses in the valley over the past year as well as other activities added to the community during the year 1881. At the end of the meeting, newly elected President, Clyde Orchard, was installed as leader of the group for the coming year.
Karl and Katherine were seated at a table with Joseph and Tetisha Cox, Abner and Delta Wingfield, and Martin Wilhite. As would be expected, the conversation varied widely, during the evening. Let’s listen in on some of it:
Katherine: Do I understand correctly that you are about to become a grandmother, again, Tetisha?
Tetisha: Yes, Hattie is due in March. She seems to be doing well. Young Tetisha is really looking forward to becoming a big sister, even at just a little over 2 years old.
Karl (to Joseph and Abner): Are you fellows going to build some more rental houses this spring?
Joseph: Probably not. We’ll be working on Abner’s house, and whatever other work comes up. Perhaps we’ll get to that later in the year, if the demand is there. Right now, it is wait and see.
Abner: I’ve talked with a few folks that may want us to do some building for them. If any of them come through, that will likely take us through the summer.
Martin: How many rental houses have you built now, is it eight?
Joseph: Yes, eight. We sold one, and converted one to the Methodist Parsonage, so we have six that are still rentals. We’ll hope to keep them filled. Two are vacant right now.
They discussed the town council
Talk turned to town government
Martin: Did I hear there was talk of adding a Mayor to the town government, Joseph?
Joseph: Actually, there has been Martin. Our town was founded before there was state legislation on such things, so we were grandfathered in with just the five-member council, which has worked fine for us. We rotate the Chairman position of the council, so that one person is always available to represent the town. Sylvestor, as an attorney, has suggested it might be well to “get in line” with most of the rest of the state by changing our town ordinance to have a designated Mayor. He is currently drafting something for the council to look at. What do you think?
Martin: It doesn’t really matter, to me. But, I suppose it would be simpler for a lot of folks who are used to a town having a Mayor, to have one. Would the Mayor be elected separately?
Joseph: That is one of the key questions, of course, along with a few others related to specific duties. Right now, the sentiment seems to be to have the council appoint the mayor just as we now appoint the Chairman. It provides more flexibility, which we each prefer. I’m sure it will get thorough discussion at one of our next meetings.
Martin: Will it need to go a vote of the people?
Joseph: Not if we do it as I just described. If we decided the Mayor would be specifically elected, that would require a vote of the people to change, as I understand it. I’m not the attorney, but that is my current impression.
Would the boys become carpenters or farmers?
Mothers talk about sons
Tetisha (to Delta and Abner Wingfield): You have two sons still at home that are growing up. Will they be carpenters or farmers, do you think? Have they decided? Or you decided?
Abner: I’m not really sure what they’ll do. What do you think, mother? (Looking to his wife).
Delta: These are decisions we are each facing right now, of course. We decided to go ahead and build our house in town. We kind of expected that Peter would have a wife and want to live out on the farm before too much longer. We seem to have gotten the cart before the horse on that. He doesn’t even have a steady girl yet.
Abner: Oh, boys. Peter has done well at both helping out with the farm, and has become s skilled carpenter with our crews. He may well continue to split his time as I have ended up doing. Perhaps it will be David that helps make the decision for the family. He is still just a junior at the high school. It’s more than a year, probably; before he knows which way he’ll go, if then. I doubt he’ll decide for more schooling, although he could, I suppose. He is a fairly good student. (Looking toward Karl and Katherine, he added…)
Have you heard him say anything? He does spend some time with Kent, their being in the same class.
Karl: No, I really haven’t, Abner. Kent has decided he definitely wants to farm, and I’ve supported him in that decision. But I’ve not really heard the boys say anything either way on that, have you, Katherine?
Katherine: No, I’m the same way. I know they do spend time together, from time to time, but I’ve not heard them on that subject. I do know they’ve talked more about girls lately, but they don’t share any decisions with me. They just ask a subtle question, now and them, so I do know that is a one subject of their conversations.
Abner: Martin, is your boy going to stay working in the business with you?
Martin: Yes, Reese seems very happy doing what he is doing, his older sister, Cynthia, as well. Neither of them seems to have a steady beau, either, as far as we know.
Martha: As far as we know, of course, we may be the last to know. (Chuckles could be heard all around the table in response to that reply).
Note from the author
This is the forty-forth episode of this short story series, and the fourth of what will be Volume Three. The stories are set in the Ozarks Mountains setting of “The Homeplace Saga” series of family saga historical fiction. This Episode is set in January of the calendar year 1882. The 20-Episode Series OSx, “Life in Oak Springs and more” fills in the gap of time between Episodes 40 and 41 in this series. These episodes move the story forward for the entire "Saga" series.
The earlier episodes of the King Family series have now been compiled into two eBooks, titled: "The Kings of Oak Springs,” Vol. 1 and Vol. 2 (20 episodes each). See the link, below, to get yours.
“The Homeplace Saga” historical fiction family saga stories are the creation of the author, William Leverne Smith, also known as “Dr. Bill.”