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Life in Oak Spring - Ep 30 - 1912

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

The Titanic dominated the news


Activities in the Bevins Family

On January 6, New Mexico became the 47th state. On February 14th, Arizona became the 48th state of the United States. On March 27, Mayor Yukio Ozaki of Tokyo gave 3,000 cherry trees to be planted in Washington, D.C., as a symbol of the friendship between the two countries. In May Alaska becomes a territory of the United States.

News of the sinking of the Titanic in mid-April dominated the newspapers. Sailing on its maiden voyage from England to New York with over 2200 passengers and crew, the Titanic ocean liner struck an iceberg in the North Atlantic and sunk leaving more than 1500 persons dead.

Ora B and Sarah Jane announced that they would marry in June of 1914. Ora B was making the most of his opportunity to be a full time farmer. Along with Bernie, they managed to clear an additional 20 acres off brush and timber to create that much more crop and pasture land for production. At the same time they were having a good year off the existing land. Cecil Waters graduated high school in May and announced that he had been accepted at the State University on full scholarship in Arts and Design based on his continued success in his entries in Art Shows around the region. His parents were very proud of his continued dedication to his field. They also were concerned, of course, whether this work could ever provide him with a living wage.

In the fall Presidential Election Democratic New Jersey Governor Woodrow Wilson defeated incumbent Republican President William Howard Taft as well as former Republican President Theodore Roosevelt running on the Bull Moose ticket. It was not the result that most folks in Oak Springs were expecting.

Ethel had her first birthday


Activities in the McDonald Family

Joe & Beth made March 14, Ethel’s first birthday, a big deal of course. All family members on both sides gathered to celebrate the event. She liked the attention, but it was really an adult gathering, of course. William had to be careful to let the other family members get their time with Ethel. He really wanted her to himself, of course.

Charlotte and Jane continued to follow the suffrage movement in the country through the newspapers and their magazines. In 1912 women won the right to vote in Oregon, Arizona, and Kansas. Their reading also reminded them of the many wars going on around the world. The Ottoman Empire was showing weakness on many fronts. Mexico was in upheaval. In Russia, the major political party split. Italian airships drop bombed on Turkish troops for the first time.

Joe continued to participate in all offerings of the extension service and programs provided by other organizations so as to stay up-to-date on agricultural and management practices. He was careful, of course, to recognize that some programs were to promote commercial products. William attended some of these with him so that they could talk over the implications of what they say. Other of the programs gave Joe more information to add to his growing bank of knowledge as he moved forward in his growth as a manager of the farm assets.

Jane McDonald appreciated the occasional visits from Joe. Not only did those visits include talk of current cattle and other operations, but he always asked questions about the early days of valley and how she viewed to future. Some of these meetings were in the evening so that Beth could be present. She was especially interested in hearing about the early days of the valley settlement and how the McDonald family had been able to prosper though some difficult times. Jane was pleased to be able to share her extensive knowledge and her hopes for the future.


Family Activities around the Valley

James Street and Emma Jackson married the first weekend of June. They each continued to work in town. Delmer Wingfield married Martha Miller. He would continue to work with his father on the Construction Company. Chester Key married Jewell Ward the third weekend of June. They would each continue to work in their family stores. Grover Ring and Rosa Tombridge were married on the fourth weekend in June. On July 1, Grover became the Official Town Mail Carrier delivering mail to residential customers.

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Guy Presley finally brought his family to Oak Springs. He had spent all of his time building his dealership and had done so very successfully. He was pleased to introduce his wife, Doris, to the June Chamber of Commerce meeting, along with their son, Milo, 15, and daughter, Jennifer, 13, The youngster will be in Oak Springs in the fall. Guy also announced that he had obtained a Chevrolet Dealership to go along with the Ford Dealership. He reminded everyone that his dealership now provided full maintenance services to all makes and models.

Delbert Farley graduated in June. He will spend the next year in training at the Funeral Home in Maryville where his father trained. Delbert expects to the return to his father’s business. Sally (Rhodes) Campbell, the oldest person in the community, passed away quietly on October 20 at the Campbell Boarding House.

Several of the couples in the valley chose to marry in the fall in 1912. The first of these was Lee Die married Fay Keith, of the west valley and east valley, respectively. He will stay and work on the family farm. Grover McKinney married Flora Williams and they will live and work in town. Roy Wingfield married Lola Carver; they will live and work on the family farm; she will continue as part time telegrapher at the Freight Station. Arthur Garrett married Cora Hay. He was named Assistant Manager of the Billiard Parlor on November 1. Gilbert Lay married Effie Carver. He will continue to work at the family store and she at the boarding house.

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.”

This is "The Homeplace Saga" series of historical fiction, family saga stories

  • "The Homeplace Saga" Blog
    The home blog for "The Homeplace Saga" series of historical fiction family saga stories set in the southern Missouri Ozarks. All updates of the series are mentioned on the blog, regardless of platform.

A useful collection of Founding Stories in "The Homeplace Saga" series

Video Book Trailer

Video Book Trailer

Video Book Trailer


William Leverne Smith (author) from Hollister, MO on March 12, 2021:

Thank you, Bill. It has been an invigorating project, and continues.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on March 12, 2021:

It's always a pleasure to read your historical "fiction."

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