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Ponca City Information

Ponca City History

1952

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1952 – Voters approved a $220,000 bond issue for airport expansion. The city also received a $292,000 grant from the Civil Aeronautics Administration. Air passenger service from Braniff and Central Airlines came to Ponca City.

T.J. Cuzalina, owner of Cuzalina’s Drug Store, promoted Dwight D. Eisenhower when Ike was running for President of the United States. He reportedly was responsible for coining the slogan, “I Like Ike.” He finally met Ike in person at a golf tournament in Denver, Colorado. T.J.’s comment was, “You just have to look at General Eisenhower to see he is a good man and a natural leader, for he is as plain as an old shoe.”

In May, WBBZ Radio moved their studio from West Grand to 1601 East Oklahoma Ave. at Spring Hill. A new tower and ground system extended the signal farther into Osage County and southern Kansas.

A large granite marker was installed at the corner of Fourteenth Street and South Avenue, commemorating the “Big Spring.” The marker reads: “Located 200 feet west is the Big Spring used by Indians, explorers and cattlemen before the Cherokee Strip was opened to white settlement. After the famous run of 1893, this spring was the main source of water for early Ponca City.” Erected by the Ponca City Chapter, National Society of Daughters of the American Revolution, it was dedicated on September 16, 1952.

A severe drought across the entire state prevailed from late April until mid-November. The Weather Bureau listed it as the driest crop season in Oklahoma history. The dry, hot weather during the wheat harvest helped give Oklahoma its biggest crop in history, almost 108 million bushels. However, as the crop season advanced, Oklahoma had the worst corn and cotton crops in history. The state was better prepared to cope with the drought due to soil conservation programs.

On April 9, an earthquake rocked the state. It was felt in all sections except the two Panhandle counties and along the extreme eastern border.

On August 1, Frank Winsted resumed his duties as city manager with a salary of $10,800 a year. He had been called into military service on September 11, 1950 with the 321st Criminal Investigation reserve unit, assigned to duty in Germany. George Biggs, who had been acting city manager during Winsted’s absence, was given the new title of assistant city manager, devoting his attention chiefly to the management of the municipal airport.

Washington School was completed at 1615 N. Seventh St. Miss Madelle Hoffman was named as principal. To promote moral and spiritual growth, Washington initiated a Wednesday morning intercom devotional program.

In November, Dwight D. Eisenhower was elected President of the United States. The Oklahoma voters overwhelmingly went Republican in all political races.

Damage was substantial in a fire at Continental Oil Co. There were 1.25 million new motor oilcans lost, as fire destroyed the building where the cans were stored.