Saturday, January 31, 2009

Local Soldiers and Belles of the Centennial Celebration

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Pictured are some Baldwyn folks getting ready for the local centennial celebration (as stated).

Note that Judy Bryant's name is misspelled. But we all know who she is!

I'm confused. I suppose that this was the 1976 USA centennial, or which? The uniforms of the civil war era again might mean that this is the second (1964) BCR battle re-enactment? Help!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

A Champion of a different Type

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Pictured is the Ratliff family of Baldwyn. They had a store northeast of town and also farmed.

Lamar distinguished himself as a celebrity of sorts - not by playing ball or other means - he was the national champion corn grower of 1955 with a record harvest of 304.38 bushels to the acre.

The Ratliffs had a moccasin-infested lake containing bass and bream and some fine fishing. Lots of us fished and even swam in the lake, to heck with the snakes.

Lamar had a precisely measured acre just below this lake and a drain from the lake to water his crop. He would often be seen working in that plot instead of fishing or doing what boys do in the summertime.

He was featured on Funk's corn advertising programs (his sponsor) for years after this award.

I have no idea what Lamar did after school, have never heard from him since. Maybe some reader has that information.

Family photo from an old album given by an anonymous donor.
Lake photo by Carl Houston

Saturday, January 24, 2009

BHS Beauties of the early 50s

Here are two old photos of BHS beauties from the early 50s.

One was an outstanding basketball player, and the other was very outstanding academically. Both were very popular with the faculty and students.

They were also very popular with "Snooper"!

Can you name them?

Sunday, January 18, 2009

More photos from Readers

Shown above are some photos from blog readers.

Drs. Christian and Caldwell are shown having a streetside talk apparently in front of Tom's Drug Store. This will be in the era of the early to mid 1940s.

The serviceman in the photo is Randall Estes. We believe he is the unfortunate lineman who lost his life by electrocution near Dr. Shirley's dental office. What a bummer that was, after safely serving in WW2 in combat.

Seated on the curb of downtown Baldwyn is (left to right) - Clarene Evans, Olga Corbett, a former BHS teacher, and a Mrs. Mears?? The time is late 70s and during an Okeelala Festival which was then held downtown before moving to Latimer Park.


Photos from the Marie Evans collection and others.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Baldwyn Shriners - 1940s

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Tom Shellnut submitted this photo of some Baldwyn men during their initiation as Shriners. Tom writes:

This is the "fun" part of the initiation and is pictured in a hotel in Meridian in the late 1940's.

Standing from left to right: Frank Haney, my dad- E. A. Shellnut, Mr. Yarborough, (I think) Mickey's father, and M. Gordon. In front are, from left to right, a man from Rienzi, Mississippi, Cecil Nanney, and an unknown person. If anyone can fill in the blanks, please let us hear from you.

Goes to show that our fathers DID have fun!


Note: The photo is untouched, so the writing and facial markings are actually on the men... albeit the dress is customary for initiations such as this.

From the Hamasa Shrine Temple website:

All Shriners are also Master Masons, dedicated to improving themselves and their communities by living up to the high moral standards they have solemnly sworn to support.

There are Three Great Steps on the Life Path of a Freemason: Faith, Hope and Charity.

Charity is the greatest and most enduring, and Shriners are active supporters of charity as evidenced by the Shriners Hospitals for Children where care is provided at no charge to their parents. These hospitals treat severely burned and crippled children, and are supported solely by donations that Shriners generate from various projects.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Coach Vandiver visits Chile

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This letter from Coach Vandiver to Johnny Massengill was written, as shown, during a visit to Chile. The reason for that trip has been explained by daughter Mary Evelyn (Vandiver) Swords:

The coach had a cousin who married a Chilean and they lived in Chile. Both were enthusiastic basketball fans and when word got around that the wife had a cousin in the United States who was a basketball coach, Mr. Vandiver was issued an invitation of an all-expenses-paid trip for the summer (winter there) to come to Chile and coach a team ( or as the letter states, at least six teams). He writes that the teams are much different, and he must have coached boy and girl teams both and traveled extensively to play games, all the way to the "H.S." tournaments that would start within two weeks of the writing of the letter.

The letter details what his trip was like. Mary Evelyn said when he returned home and got off the plane, he was wearing a big cowboy hat and a colorful vest, both gifts from his friends in Chile. She remembers him bringing home souvenirs and gifts for the family, in particular some fine wool fabric that Chile was famous for.

Maybe it will stir some memories and someone else can add details.

Mary also said someone (probably from Chile) gave her dad a scrapbook/photo album bound in leather with photos from his trip. Unfortunately, she hasn't seen the album since her mother died. But she promised to ask her sister, Golda, if she has the album. If found, we will add more details.

Thanks to Mary Evelyn and Cynthia Mink for obtaining and sending the information. Letter courtesy of Betty Massengill.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Baldwyn Firefighters

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Photo of one of the early Baldwyn Volunteer firefighter teams. Exact date unknown.

Front row, L-R - Roy Bryant, Dale Chisholm, Jerry Ozbirn, ?? Ray.

Rear, L-R - B. E. Ozbirn, Harold Dobbs, Milton Nanney, Jimmy Miller, Herb Spivey.

The DeVaughn family in the upper photo lost everything in a fire one Saturday afternoon. Their plight was shared by other families and was remedied greatly by the early volunteers who helped to establish a valid response to emergencies and fires. The city of Baldwyn was now getting cutting-edge protection it had never had.


Photos courtesy of Clarene Evans.