Terry Mason's Family History Site
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Marriage Notes for Charles B. Huddleston and Opal Eva McLeskey
Home of Rev. R.W. Patterson
11164. William Doris Ansley
RESEARCHER: Information sent to T.Mason on 20 May 2004 by Karen Ansley
AUTOBIOGRAPHY: My father came to Beaver City, Oklahoma, in 1903 and homesteaded here in 1905, four and one half miles northwest of Optima, Oklahoma. My father and mother lived on the Beaver River with his uncle, J.W. Ansley, until he (my father) built a dugout on his own claim.
Mother went back to Chandler, Texas, where I was born December 15, 1905. When four weeks old, I took the red measles, so Mother could not come back until February, 1906. When I was 2 years old, I fell in a tub of hot water and was scalded all across my back and side. Doctors from another town came to see me and said there was no use to come back for more treatment. My father contacted Dr. G. D. Lawery, who lived in the country about 7 miles west of Hooker. He came to see me every day for 30 days and treated the burns. The doctor traveled about 13 miles to our home. It took me about three months to get well.
In 1907 my sister Merlene was born. When I was 5 years old, my grandmother (Editor's note: Not sure if this was Grandmother Southerland or Grandmother Ansley) bought me a primer and a speller. She taught me my ABC's and how to count. Then when I was 7 years old, I started to school at Victory, District #1. This school house was built in 1910, the first school district in Texas County, Oklahoma, about 4 miles west of Optima. I went to school there until I was in the 7th grade. School at that time was only 4- to 5-month terms, depending on the amount of money the district had. My first schoolteachers were Lillie Adams and Albert Johnston.
When I was 10 years old, my job was to milk 4 to 6 cows and feel them before I went to school. Every fall I had to miss school to help gather crops. On Saturdays in fall and winter, I had to help haul feed and stack it for winter feed. In the summer I helped with the farming. Every week I took my grandmother by horse and buggy to Optima to sell her cream and eggs.
In 1916, World War I broke out and most of the young men were called to service, leaving very few for harvest hands. I worked in the header barge for two weeks at $4 per day helping load and unload wheat with a fork. At this time wheat was cut by header, caught in a barge and hauled and stacked in a stack yard. Later this was thrashed by a thrashing machine.
After harvest I worked on the river in hay harvest. In the fall, I pulled broom corn and cut maize. Heads were cut off by picket knife and thrown in a wagon and hauled to a stack yard and later thrashed. Maize harvest usually lasted 4 to 6 weeks. After maize harvest I worked with a thrashing crew. One year I operated the separator for my uncle (George Fowler) during the thrashing season.
When the highway was first built along the railway from Optima to Hooker, I helped build a grade for the road from Optima to the Buffalo school house road. I drove 3 horses pulling a Fresno, loading and unloading dirt for the grade. When the court house was built in Guymon, a friend and I did the excavating work with a team and Fresno. I worked two years part-time in the summer for the Rock Island Railroad as a section hand for $56 a month.
In 1925, I finished school in Optima. I had been janitor for the school for 5 years while going to school there. In 1925 I worked all winter on a ranch feeding cattle for $1 per day. I saved enough money to buy a second-hand 1921 Model T Ford. The first car I had bought was a 1916 Model T Ford.
In 1926 I worked in harvest 20 days driving a tractor pulling a power take-off nine-foot combine and cut about 900 acres of wheat. A wagon was hitched to the combine to catch the wheat when it filled. Then I would unhitch and tie onto another wagon and someone with a team of horses would haul it away.
On August 1, 1926, I started working for the Comley Lumber Company at Guymon. Roy Yarberry was the manager. I worked there for one year, then was sent to Hooker and worked there for 5½ months.
On my 21st birthday, my sister Merlene had a birthday party for me, and I met Ethel Serfoss at my party. On August 31, 1927, we were married in Hooker, Oklahoma, at the home of her parents, Mr. and Mrs. John W. Serfoss, by Brother N.A. Phillips.
In 1928 I was sent to Mt. Dora, New Mexico, as manager of the Comley Lunber Yard. We went by Boise City in a 1923 Model T. Ford. Our furniture was a library table loaded in the back seat. Before we got to Mt. Dora, the wind blew so hard it blew the top off the car (this was a touring car). When we got to Mt. Dora, we bought furniture for $35-2 chair, a table, a bed, and a heating stove. The cooking stove was in the house.
On May 11, 1929, a son Roy was born. I continued to work there for a year and four months, then the Comley Lumber Company built a yard in Adams, Oklahoma, and I was transferred there.
When I went to Adams to take over the lumber yard, there was just a grocery store, a cream station, two elevators, two tenant houses, and the lumber yard. It was a "new" town or settlement, but we were "back home" near both our parents and brothers and sisters. Ethel's family, John W. and Ida (Johnson) Serfoss, lived in Hooker. Ethel's maternal grandparents had come from Sweden and settled near Granada, Colorado. Both here parents were from Colorado, and there were five children in her family. Wilber Lee Serfoss (her brother) married Merlene Ansley (my sister). Wilber passed away in 1929 and was buried at Two Buttes, Colorado. Ethel and Effie were twins. Effie married Calvin Nagel and was a teacher for many years, having taught in Colorado and such area schools as Eureka, Adams, Camrick, Turpin, Phoenix, Fairview, and the Bartels school north of Guymon. A brother, Bill Serfoss, lives in Dumas, Texas. Another brother Charles lives in California. Charles has written several songs, one during the 1930's (titled) "Blowing Away on a Wheat Farm."
In 1929 the Depression started and during the early '30's there were very few jobs to be had. Working at a job for $1 a day was good pay. Some single men worked just for board and room. Hundreds of men, women and children bummed rides on box cars of trains. Most had no homes or job. At this time, milo was 20 cents a hundred, and wheat was 23 cents a bushel. Farmers sold cream and eggs and bought groceries and coal to burn. Coal was about $4.50 a ton.
Then in the late '30's the town (Adams) began to grow. The Church of Christ congregation moved a church house in. Later the First Baptist Church also moved in a church. Then came in two service stations and several grocery stores, Harold Stebens' auto repair shop, a barber shop, a blacksmith shop, and a beauty shop. The Adams farm women bought 5 acres for a city park and later planted trees in the park. The streets were all paved.
Our other sons were born during the '30's: J.W. "Pete" Ansley, born February 1, 1930, and Lemuel Charles "Duke" Ansley, born May 21, 1934, both in Adams, while Elmer our youngest, was born March 25, 1939, in Hooker. The boys were active in sports at Adams, where they graduated from high school. We were kept busy trying to attend all their ball games, and we enjoyed being a part of the school and other activities in the community. We belonged to the First Baptist Church at Adams. I had been reared in a Christian home and was converted a "born-again" Christian in 1915 and was baptized at the old First Baptist Church in Hooker. Later Ethel and I joined the First Baptist Church at Hooker after we moved here from Adams.
In 1951, the Comley Lumber Company sold the yard to Bartlett Brothers Lumber, and in 1953, Harris Goosen bought the lumber yard from Bartletts'. In 1961 the lumber yard was again sold, this time to Hank Hamm. I worked for him until August, 1963. Then we moved to Hooker, and I started working for the Hooker Lumber Company. Bob Glidewell was the manager.
In 1964, we build our home here in Hooker, Oklahoma, and I worked in the lumber yard until 1973. Then I retired and worked only part-time at the yard here (Hooker) for several more years. I worked in the lumber yard business for a total of 53 years - 1 year at Guymon, Oklahoma; 1 year and 4 months at Mt. Dora, New Mexico; 2 weeks at Tyrone, Oklahoma, 34 years at Adams, Oklahoma; and 16½ years at Hooker, Oklahoma - as well as doing carpenter work for myself. Two of our sons - Roy of Woodward and Elmer of Mooreland - are carpenters. Pete is a farmer in the Adams community, and Duke is a school superintendent in Montana.
Ethel and I enjoy being here in Hooker, near most of our family and friends. We also enjoy our 14 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren.
Marriage Notes for William Doris Ansley and Ethel Mae Serfoss
One of the prettiest weddings of the season occurred Wednesday evening, August 31st, at nine o'clock, at the home of Mr. and Mrs. John W. Serfoss, of Hooker, when their daughter, Ethel, was united in marriage to Doris Ansley, son of Mr. and Mrs. J.M. Ansley, of Optima. Rev. N.A. Phillips performing the ceremony.
The bride, always lovely, was dressed in white satin and carried a bouquet of roses and ferns, while the groom never looked more handsome, dressed in his suit of dark gray.
The color scheme of pink and white was carried out in the decoration of the house. The wedding arch and wedding bells added much to the charm of the scene.
After the ceremony Mrs. Serfoss, the bride's mother, served delightful refreshments of ice cream and cake to the following: Mr. and Mrs. G.M. Fowler; Mrs. L.G. Fowler and baby; Arden Fowler and Norah Henning, of Guymon; Mr. and Mrs. J.M. Ansley, L. Henry, J.B., Wilson, Mary and Ione Ansley, of Optima; Mr. and Mrs. Marvin Stearman and family; Mr. and Mrs. S.A. Scales; Mr. and Mrs. Carl Johnson, Willie and Charles Serfoss; Mr. and Mrs. Wilbur Serfoss; Miss Effa Serfoss; Mr. Serfoss and Rev. N.A. Phillips, of Hooker.
The young couple will make their home in Hooker, where Mr. Ansley will retain his position as bookkeeper for the Comley Lumber Company.
At a late hour the guests departed wishing Mr. and Mrs. Ansley a long and happy married life.