Volume 3, Number 10 - Winter 1970

The Editor Speaks

Since before Christmas, Myking and I sit facing the west and watch the Pacific. We walk from our living room on to the beach. Of course, Myking continues to read, but I just watch the goings on and listen to the songs of the waves. As we walk we collect pretty stones and sea shells. At this time of year few persons come to the beach yet a sunny day brings children with their kites, surfers, sail boats, and it seems millions of birds regardless of the weather.

The mail and telephone tell of folks with their background and history rooted in the White River Valley.

Mrs. J. L. Swain of Ontario, Calif., some miles to the east of here, yet beams and dreams about her visit this year to Taney County. Now she seeks more history of her family out there.

Ruby Steele of Joplin will write history when she quits work. The Ozark Mountaineer published an article of hers in the October issue.

Harold R. Farrar, Bartlesville, Okla., says: "In my collection of 'stuff and things', I have two post card pictures which should be in possession of the White River Valley Historical Society. I am a former resident of Branson, but have no ties there any more so believe these cards deserve a better home. One shows a Branson as seen from the bluff on the east side of the lake, with the old bridge, part of the lake and most of the town, about 1920. Two boats are plainly visible and I believe that my father purchased or traded for one of those boats. This would have been no later than 1921, the year we moved to Branson.

"The other card shows a train wreck. It is post marked 'Cotter, Ark., 29th Sept. 1910.' The correspondence says, 'Derailment at Melva, Mo., on this Division'.

"Our former home is now called 'Kidd Hill', three miles upstream from Branson. Has anyone done, any research on the history of the whiskey distillery located on Cooper Creek, near Hefflin Spring? It was about one-half mile west of our old home. I have often wondered who and when of this project."

From Avis Hawkins of Shrevesport, La., comes material copied from an old note book she found. First as a record of work done, a "time book" but before that as a church record book. From this Avis has copied many passages, with gillions of Taney county names. These go back to 1882 for the time records and for 1889-70 and 71 for the church records. We will publish the material next issue. Now others search your attics and old trunks.

Mrs. Buford Madry, Branson, and Mrs. Steve Miller, Hollister, gave excellent historical research talks to the Taneycomo chapter DAR this year. From these they will later sift the local history for us to publish.

Mrs. Madry wrote of "Circuit Riders". Her grandfather covered much of this area and later located at Marionville, Mo., because of the college there.

Mrs. Miller told of the "Trail of Tears". Many a local citizen revived his interest in the Cherokees. Our own secretary, Colonel 'Al' Cummings will now prepare, in advance, that paper on his wife's great-grandfather. Dr. John Mizell, head of the music Department of the School of the Ozarks, shows a greater interest. Mr. Auten just back of our hill-top, found a book he is bringing me, on Cherokees.

So the interest spreads. If you find in the attic or in trunks clippings or any material pertaining to Circuit riders, or Cherokees, do send it to us for source material. We possess a rich heritage in both areas.

Jewell Ross Mehus


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