Friday, August 29, 2008


Several posts have examined the present condition of our little town and some have opined about it's future (or lack thereof). Yesterdays LOOKOUT had two important items reported.

First--We have signed a contract of sale of the Cedar Vale Community Hospital. A group headed by John Hayes from Fredonia plans to have a ARRC (adult restorative retreat center) in the facility. He has owned such a facility in Fredonia for 9 years named Candlerock. It will now be Candlerock Fredonia and Candlerock Cedar Vale. He has announced that he also will try to buy The vacant Nursing Home, renovate it, and make it a part of the Cedar Vale complex.

Second--2PM today was the official opening of Cedar Creek Mercantile, our new little "Mom and Pop" grocery store.

Time will reveal if these positive events can halt the decline here. We can hope!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

History Items from Loyd Call

History Items from Loyd Call (these remarks have been slightly edited by me, DFCox)

A family was camping on Cedar Creek at the SW corner of Cedar Vale. A torrential rain fell and caused a flash flood which carried off and drowned the whole family except one, an infant boy. Eli Hayhurst adopted him.

The Hayhurst farm was across the road from the Cloverdale School House. Arch Bird married Mabel, Eli's daughter. The Bird place was around the corner toward the river (Big Caney). Arch and Mabel Bird's son was Ben Bird. (most bloggers will remember Ben and Edna Bird. dfc)

I think Ed Meyer married a daughter (of Arch and Mabel Bird). Ed always called her "The Old Heifer". Ed owned a five acre strip just east of the Cloverdale town site, and a blacksmith shop at the NW corner of the town site. (Ed Meyer, who walked with a pronounced limp, was known by all as "Peter Wrenchwater. dfc) Ben Bird inherited all of this.

There was a water wheel and Mill House down on the river on the Bird farm. Ed Meyer had the mill shop and people brought wheat and corn to be milled into corn meal and flour. I think the Millstones at the corner of the CV Museum are these stones.

The mail box you see in front of the house that was Ben and Edna's came from in front of the Cloverdale Store. It was used by CV and Grenola mail carriers to exchange mail. Also there was a gas pump--the kind you pump the gas up into a globe before you ran it into your car


Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Effie May Foster is 101!

I know that this is very belated, since Effie's birthday is August 11, but I just got my copy the August 14 CV Lookout. There is a nice article about Effie in this issue plus a picture with Effie looking great.

For those of us who had Effie Foster as a teacher this is an emotional moment. If you would like to send her a greeting, the article gave her current address:

Effie May Foster
PO Box 98
Dexter, KS 67038

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Record setting harvest

Record setting harvest was done in 2008, in Norton, Kansas  160 acres was harvested with 100 combines and several grain trucks in 10 minutes and 15 seconds.

This record  will be entered in the Guiness Book of World Records.

Proceeds of  this crop is to be sent to a kids camp.

From Loyd Call

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Note from Loyd Call

Hi Don I can think of several things that might be of tnterest.
 I have seen several things in the Ceder Vale Blog I can add to
that might be of interest.
Edwin Gursky Married a Japanize Girl When he was in the Army she
here several years and they had 2 children he, She wanted to go back
and visit her family. so he borrowed the money. She went back and
that is the last he saw off her.  He was working for John Hamill at the
time.  He was really devasted. 
 I was born Aug. 6 1917 at the farm owned  by Sol McKee 5 miles north
[5 mile corner]  of Cedar vale I understand your Great Grandfather Home-
steaded this farm.
 Do you know the about Ralph Hayhurst family? He was adopted by  Ely
Hayhurst.  Also I can tell you about the Telephone Lines north of  C. V.
  More later.     Loyd

Monday, August 18, 2008

A Note from the Past

I am going through a lot of very old family photos and correspondence, trying to consolidate in anticipation of our moving abroad. Today I came across this rare item from 1943. It is my uncle Vernon's Xmas card to his sister when he was stationed in Burma helping to build the China-Burma Road. The army was protecting the whereabouts of the troops in this area, which required sending their Christmas cards to New York, where they were photostated and a copy was mailed to the relatives. Some of us may just be able to remember those World War II days. Notice that the official army card was distinctly Christian in message. I don't know if other forms were provided for those soldiers of other faiths. Anyway, an interesting bit of our history.

The Closing of the Cedar Vale Telephone Switch Board

I was going through a lot of old family stuff today and came upon this bit of doggerel verse by my mother.

The old switchboard it is no more,
And it makes me sorta blue.
Cause, while the new dial phones are nice,
They cut me off from you.

I'll miss your voice, when you "ring in."
I could tell just how you feel;
And if your world was all roughed up,
Or on an even keel.

I loved the many "little" things
That you asked me to do;
And tho I never saw you much,
I seemed a part of you.

Whenever trouble came you way
I was the first to care;
And tried to speed your service up
Tho twasn't my affair.

When you rejoiced, then I was glad;
When troubled I was blue;
For even if you didn't know,
Your voice, to me, was you.

Lila B. Call/White

What she doesn't say, of course, is that she also knew pretty much everything that was going on in CV! I wrote a post about that back near the beginning of the blog. Click Here.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

CVHS Track Team

Photo from Pat Molder

Back Row:  Coach Harley Jacobson, Ronald Harp, Royal Kennedy, Richard Beuoy, Joe Hamby, Don Call, Coach Watts
Front Row:  Don Bohannon, Floyd (Pat) Patteson, Linn Wood, Raymond Couldren, Junior Bohannan

CVHS Basketball Team

Photo from Pat Molder
Back Row:  Johnny Radcliff, Donald Call, Basil Hindman, Richard Beuoy, Floyd (Pat) Patteson
    Front Row:  Donald Bohannon, Royal Kennedy, Kenneth Cole, Lynn Wood

Saturday, August 9, 2008

The Class of 1946 in1996

Back row:Basil Hindman, Don Call, Royal Kennedy

Middle row: Johnny Radcliff, Joan Williams, Maxine Duncan, Betty Pack

Front row: Pat Pate, Billy Bohannan, Wanda Roach, Junior Bohannan

The Class of 1946

CVHS Class of '46
Top Row: Walter Ford, *Wanda Lee Hill, *Armena Doty, *Kenneth Lee Howe, Melba Maxine Duncan, Johnny Leroy Radcliff

Middle Row: Donald Lee Call, Basil Floyd Hindman, Patricia Jean Pate, *John Amos Bohannon (Jr), Wanda Roach

Front Row: Geraldine Joan Williams, Royal Preston Kennedy, D.Lois Miller, Betty Lou Pack, *Billy Bohannan, *Edward Oerke

*Deceased.......................Fine looking class says Pat Molder.

Thanks, Pat.

Friday, August 8, 2008

First day of school ...

My first day of school in my new town was as an eighth grader at Cedar Vale Grade School. We moved to CV in October 1948 from Winfield. I thoroughly enjoyed the Winfield schools and was the only seventh and eighth grader in the band and orchestra. The music instructors were quite good and I naturally had some thoughts about the system of my new town. It was soon found that Cedar Vale had an excellent instrumental music teacher in G. A. Beggs.

We lived in the "Georgia Chapman Apartments" and my first adventure was to attend band practice at the high school. I remember that the senior trombone players were Verne Sweaney and Barbara Williams. After practice Mr. Beggs drove me to the grade school for my first school day. Different text books were used at my new school and I just attempted to get the information from our instructor (John Morton) during class and didn't purchase the needed texts. Needless to say ... my grades were not brag-worthy. Another problem of moving to a new school can be that friendships are already established by those that have for some time been together. For this reason in some schools it can be difficult to create a niche for yourself. On the whole, my move to Cedar Vale was not difficult because of the friendliness of the class and the town.

Having transferred to several different schools during my grade school days ... I found that it wasn't unusual for the need of a new boy to prove himself by having a fist fight. Cedar Vale was an exception to this rule as I don't remember having to enter into this dreaded activity for a measure of respect for my class. (At the same time, it was occasionally necessary to fight someone from another class.) One epic battle that I remember described was one between Don Shaffer and Harold Bohannon. During this era there were a number of skirmishes and this just seemed to be part of being a boy. After the trouble, most usually the boys ended up being friends.

Harold Bohannon was an ornery fellow and one day crawled out on the window ledge in study hall. It is not remembered if anyone else helped me but I closed and locked the window. Study hall at that time in the old high school was on the second floor located above the entrance to the administrator's office. As Harold was stranded there ... I believe it was Mr. Humble who was walking in the door and immediately called to the study hall teacher (Mary Hamilton) to "get that boy off the window ledge". Tragically, Harold died an early death in an automobile accident in Texas.

The aromas of Cedar Vale Grade School were unique and I believe most drifted from the school cafeteria. The food was probably just fine ... but as related in an earlier blog ... Tom Gordon and I daily trekked to "Herb's" for our midday so to speak delicious two bit meal. Recesses had been discarded at Winfield Junior High but were back in vogue at Cedar Vale. The recess periods that some jokingly refer to as having been their favorite part of school were most certainly the highlight of my school day.

Mr. Morton had a hole drilled paddle that he used much too often for my liking. My dad informed me on the first day of my first grade that if I should receive a whipping in school that I would receive another (twice as hard) when I returned home. Thankfully, he never found out until much later of my several "problems".

No sex education class was available but much of this early learning came from the group discussions at shop classes in Winfield and with classmates Tom Gordon, Delores Hall, and Shirley Sweaney at Cedar Vale. These small tidbits of shocking information seemed to be most all I that needed to understand at least some about the birds and the bees. Delores Hall was perhaps the most adventuresome of our class and at least once was sent home by Mr. Morton to return to school in more suitable attire. Most likely her "shocking" garb today would have been most conservative.

Cedar Vale Grade School remains dear to my heart and my memories. I remember our janitor (Mr. Beachler) as a fine man. Other teachers included L. Doran Wesbrook (the wife of a relative), Effie Foster, and Ethel Montgomery. This school would not likely be thought of as exceptional for today's standards but it seemed to produce students of excellence.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

The Power of Memory

I want to thank Gary Metcalf for giving us his recent impressions of Cedar Vale as it struggles for continued existence. It is certainly true that those of us who have not been back recently carry a memory that bears little resemblance to the current reality. We remember a vital little town that was buzzing on Saturday night and doing OK during the week as well. Gary’s list of stores pretty much agrees with mine, with the addition of the Leonard Theater, which was a very important place for me.

Likewise, in my memory, all you gals are still fresh-faced and pretty, without a single wrinkle and the guys are all slim and athletic. We were excited to be growing up together in that town, which was the center of our lives. With all that in mind, I take the liberty of posting again for your reading pleasure a piece I wrote several months ago, called Time Machine.

Time Machine

Do you remember the comic strip Alley Oop from our youth? It is still being drawn today. Dr. Elbert Wonmug had a time machine that brought Alley and all his friends into the 20th century, or 20th century folk back to the stone age. Far fetched you say? Wait a minute friends.

Recently a friend (Wayne Woodruff) and I were blogging (that’s what we do these days) about one Judy Gorton, a friend we both had at the University of Kansas. Then my friend wrote about “little Nadine Foster” and four-year-old Nadine came clearly into my memory just as I remembered her—no bigger than a minute and faster than greased lightning. Judy G. exists in my memory as that 20-year-old beauty, with dewy complexion and a smile that would melt any young man’s heart. Other classmates are just as they were when I last saw them even though they must be in their 60s or even 70s by now. Is that a time machine or what? Our time machine is our memories and that’s why I’ve had so much fun bringing all the past back and enjoying it again. So friends, keep your own the time machine going. Dr. Wonmug has nothing on us!



Nancy and I recently returned from our semi-annual trip to Kansas and CV. The purpose of the trip was to visit our mothers, (91 and 92) who are residents of the assisted living facility, Presbyterian Manor in Arkansas City. Nellie Hite, Coena (Scott) Foster and JD Hite’s mother is also a resident there. Nancy took her mother to Cedar Vale to stay in her home which she still has in CV.

On the drive back I got to thinking of how Cedar Vale has changed from the way I remember it 50 to 60 years ago. Even though I have been back many times in the past 50 years, I still think of it as it was in my youth. I thought there may be CV blog readers who have not had the occasion to visit CV for many years and might be interested in how the town is now. Had I thought of writing this while I was there, I would have done a better job of research and be more accurate in my comments than what I can recall from my casual observations. My comments are surely not intended to offend anyone, for there are many CV residents who enjoy and are proud to live in CV and many dedicated, hard working individuals who strive to keep CV a viable town.

The most significant difference from the 40 and 50's is the number of businesses. I tried to retrieve Wayne’s “tour of the town” but didn’t find it. From my recollection there were three grocery stores, two drug stores, three or four cafes, four or five service stations, two auto dealers, two farm implement dealers, barber shop, dry cleaners, pool hall, theater, saddle shop, chiropractor, bank, black smith, feed store, dry goods, hardware, motel, hospital, television repair, newspaper, REA, lumber yard, auto repair, sale barn, two elevators, locker plant and I am sure several others I don’t immediately recollect.

Contrast these businesses to what I recall is presently in business now. Starting at the Methodist Church and going down main street there is a small beauty shop, which is apparently open by appointment only, the post office, the city office, museum in the old LC Adams store, Mickey Myers drug store, (no fountain) where Maurice Smiths grocery was; Mike Campbell insurance and real estate office, where Hankins drug store was; a library in the vicinity of where the pool hall was and the bank on the corner. On the other side of the street is the People’s Place, which serves lunch to senior citizens. All the other remaining buildings on that side of the street are vacant and many of the old building have been torn down. The was a comment that a small grocery store may be going in the area where Woodruff/Clark dry cleaners used to be.

The REA is still in the same location, two cafe’s, The Hilltop, operated by Jim Looman, class of 49, and the Prairie Kitchen, operated by Eddie Snyder’s wife Rosie, which is by the locker plant, which is also in operation. A medical clinic, I assume with limited capabilities, is located in the Hays hospital.

Across from where the Coop service station used to be is the only service station in town and is also a convenience store with a goodly stock of grocery and items. Where the Rice House elevator was, is a company called Western Feeds, which grinds, sacks and distribute livestock feeds. The apparently do a good business as motors are constantly running.

Compared to the old days, main street was basically deserted. On one occasion there was only one car on main street. The most activity is at lunch time, with cars park at the People’s Place.
In the evenings there were no kids cruising main street; no cars parked on the corner with girls in one car and boys in another. In fact I never saw a teenager in a car on main street at any time.

CV has had a lot of rain this summer and every thing is beautifully green. Most of the yards are mowed neatly and the homes that are lived in, most of them show the pride of their owners. However there are many vacant houses and the some of the yards were in need of attention. A few places had all sorts of items (junk) in their yards.

A nice addition to CV is the swimming pool, which is down by the rodeo grounds. I went by it a couple of times and there were kids that seemed to be having a good time. Many evening there were ball games at the old ball diamond that so many of us bloggers remember so well. Hewins park looked very nice, the grounds were mowed and the pavilion has been restored and appeared to be in good repair. In fact it looked much better than it used to when it was very active with Saturday night dances in the summer. ( Remember when the car trunk lids were always open and a crowd standing around). Across the road from the rodeo grounds is the nursing home that has been closed for many years. I think it is vacant and not used for any thing.

Seeing the changes in CV is kind of like seeing the changes in acquaintance’s, loved ones and our selves. It is sad, but inevitable. Time and mother nature has taken its toll on us. We don’t look the same or able to do the things we did 50-60 years ago. Time and economics has taken its toll on CV. Economics will not allow it to be the thriving town that we remember. A farm family today, cannot survive on 160 acres, with crops, hay, cattle and pigs. I applauded those who have chosen to stay, raising their families and contributing to the towns survival.

CV is and will continue to be a nice place to live, raise a family and work in surrounding towns. I feel it will become more of a retirement area if there are food and medical facilities available.
But for now and the near future it seems it will be a struggle for the present businesses and for the schools to remain open for the long term.

Of the various places I have lived, only in Kansas and Cedar Vale have I experienced chiggers, lighting bugs and singing locust. The latter two were pleasant reminders, the former I would just as soon not encounter.

PS–Don C. since you live in CV, please feel free to add to or correct any of my observations and comments.