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Life in Oak Spring - Ep 29 - 1911

Dr. Bill's first passion is family history. His second is a passion for creating family saga, historical fiction stories that share it.

The Chevrolet to compete with Ford


Activities in the Bevins Family

Early in February, the Missouri State Capital Building in Jefferson City was destroyed by fire when lightning struck the dome. In April, the United States Supreme Court dissolved Standard Oil Company into 34 separate operating oil companies including Exxon, Mobil, Chevron, Texaco and others due to violation of the Sherman Anti-Trust act.

On April 17, Ora B and Bernie were plowing some corn land using their best ox, Big Black. Half way across the field, Big Black threw a shoe. However, upon further examination, Bernie pointed out to Ora B that a crack in the hoof of Big Black was such that would not allow a simple horseshoe replacement that they could do. He needed to be treated by the Blacksmith. This would be at least an overnight visit. They decided Ora B would go ahead with needed evening chores while Bernie walked Big Black into town to the Blacksmith. No harm would come from doing that. Ora B would come along on his horse, later, so as to be there at the Blacksmith.

In town, Ora B stopped by his house to assure they would want Bernie to stay overnight with them in the guest room. Over at the Blacksmith, just a couple of blocks away, Ora B extended the invitation to Bernie. Bernie accepted the invitation reluctantly. The Blacksmith, Bryce Taylor, said it was very important that they brought Big Black in, today. He had called for Dr. John Warden, the Veterinary, to examine the hoof. Dr. Warden agreed that it was an unusual injury, but he felt they could treat it with their mutual skills, which they immediately began.

Myrtle and Caroline insisted that Bernie take advantage of their running water and bath facility while he was there. After reluctantly accepting, Bernie had to admit it was very nice! He actually might want to consider it for their home.

Overall, it was a wet year on the farm for Ora B and Bernie Waters. They met their needs but made no progress on other projects and goals. Ora B was able to cut some trees and clear some brush on the corner land, but not enough to satisfy him. Perhaps next year will be better, he hoped. Certainly no new bath room this year.

In November, Chevrolet officially entered the automobile market to compete with the Ford Model T. In mid-December, the Roald Amundsen expedition reached the South Pole.

The cover image of the 1907 "The Shepherd of the Hills"


Activities in the McDonald Family

On the 14th of March, Joe & Beth were blessed with the birth of their first daughter. She is named Ethel Eileen McDonald. Little Ethel was surrounded by the love of her parents and both sets of grandparents, as well as other family and friends. William seemed to especially take to his first young grand baby. With such willing grandparents handy to look after Ethel during the day, Beth returned to her work much sooner than most people thought was appropriate. Beth, however, felt she was doing the best thing for her family. Joe was careful not to say anything to upset any of his family. He focused on his own work projects.

Alex McDonald and Nellie Truesdale along with Russell Nixon continued to flourish with the writing and travel of Alex. He recently wrote about a visit he made nearby to “The Shepherd of the Hills.” Harold Bell Wright had spent a number of years in the White River valley to the southwest of Oak Springs. He had kept a diary and now had published his book about that experience. Alex had been attempting to get Harold Bell Wright to visit Oak Springs, but had no luck. He decided to write about him, instead. The article made note that a number of copies of the book, “The Shepherd of the Hills,” were available at the Print Shop.

The land of "The Shepherd of the Hills"


Family Activities around the Valley

Roy Garrett married Mabel Jones in April and they each continued to work in town. Homer Wilhite married Georgia Derryberry on the first weekend in June. They each continued to work in town. Teacher Clifford Cunningham married Elsie Wingfield the second weekend of June. Teacher Wilson Miller married Dora Carver, also the second weekend of June. The four Nixon Apartments had been remodeled in recent years and could now be lived in by couples, which the teachers did.

One of the first few persons to be born in the valley after settlement passed away in April. Allison (Olson) Inman was the daughter of Owen and Anna Olson who had arrived in the valley just weeks following those first eleven settlers.

Martin Wilhite and Fannie Powell, each having lost their mates, but still young at heart and mind, decided to marry, with the blessing of their adult children, on April 15. They had found they had many common interests, and intended to follow them.

In the summer, Karl and Katherine King moved into town where the devote their full attention to management of all the many properties in the trust created by the Wingfield and Cox family members earlier. Karl had helped them work through that and now took on the full-time responsibility, assisted by Katherine. It was also announced that David Powell was now Manager of the Powell Furniture Store with his sister, Melissa, as Assistant Manager.

Note by the Author

This series of stories provide the backstory on the community and families that were first introduced in the novel “Back to the Homeplace” set in 1987. With the restart in 1903 we provide the setting for the marriage of Frank Bevins and Mildred McDonald in 1937, though neither is yet to be born until 1917.

The stories of the "American Centennial at the Homeplace: The Founding (1833-1875)" collection of historical fiction family saga short stories lay the background for the stories of Oak Springs and the Oak Creek Valley. They

have also been published on "The Homeplace Saga" blog (thehomeplaceseries dot blogspot dot com). Four volumes of “The Kings of Oak Springs” (e-books) and related stores are available at https://www dot Lulu dot com/en/us/shop/dr-bill-smith/

“The Homeplace Saga” historical fiction family saga stories are the creation of the author, William Leverne Smith, also known as “Dr. Bill.”


William Leverne Smith (author) from Hollister, MO on March 05, 2021:

Virginia, thank you so much for the comment. I saw you note on Facebook, on 1910. I appreciate the information very much. Interesting period, for sure.

William Leverne Smith (author) from Hollister, MO on March 05, 2021:

Peg, thank you so much for your comment. I've tried to be as authentic to the period as possible. Nice to receive your confirmation.

William Leverne Smith (author) from Hollister, MO on March 05, 2021:

I doubt that war is yet on the minds of the average person. There are wars in several corners of the world, but unless they read their newspapers very closely, not likely. Radio had not yet arrived Thanks, as always, for your thoughtful comments, Bill.

Virginia Allain from Central Florida on March 05, 2021:

The Shepherd of the Hills has a character (Fiddlin' Jake) who is based on an ancestor of mine, Charles Augustus Vining. I'll send you a link to my blog post about "Grandma's Famous Cousin."

Peg Cole from Northeast of Dallas, Texas on March 05, 2021:

Stories like this one are fascinating and remind me of the tales my dad told us children about his father who lived from 1880 - 1956. We take for granted things like bathroom facilities that were luxuries back in those early times on the farm. Nicely told.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on March 05, 2021:

War is approaching. I wonder if they sensed how much life would change for U.S. citizens in a few years? As always, a wonderful glimpse back in time.

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