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Ponca City Information

Ponca City History

196

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1962 — The Board of Education sought parent’s opinions about kindergarten in the schools and a hot lunch program.

J. Win Payne was reelected school superintendent, a position he had held since 1946.

The Post Office consolidated its services; all postal transactions, including money orders, were transferred to the front windows.

Gov. J. Howard Edmondson contacted the Ponca City News to report that, rather than removing the famous oil derricks that loom over Oklahoma’s Capitol Building, the state would “dress up and preserve” them. “Now, please tell your readers. Spare those letters,” Edmondson requested. Earlier, in an editorial, The News had proposed letters to the governor and others, protesting removal of the derricks. They were installed in the 1930s when E.W. Marland was governor and discovered oil on the capitol grounds.

Four local drug stores - Buck Rowe’s, Humes Rexall, Northcutt’s Rexall, and Walker’s Walgreen – agreed to alternate being open on Sundays, with one staying open each week.

On February 27, Army engineers of the Board of Rivers and Harbors approved the $78 million Kaw Reservoir project on the Arkansas River. Senators Kerr and Monroney announced they would try to get Congress authorization this year to provide planning funds. Kaw Dam boosters were jubilant. Army engineers planned to allot more of the water in the proposed Kaw reservoir for local uses, but they wanted more of the costs picked up by local interests. Engineers estimated actual work would begin on the project in five years, assuming Congress approved.

Joe Boylan filed as a candidate for mayor. A week later, Clifford Maple, Leonard Sherbon, and Fred Oliver also filed.

Bell Telephone Co. had a 3-day open house at its new building in late March. As a salute, Andersen’s Shoe Store, Troy Cleaners, Holland Janitor Supply, and Braudrick Printery, businesses in the immediate area, held open houses too.

On April 3, Joe Boylan was elected mayor by a landslide vote. Voters rejected two proposed charter amendments and approved one, that of lifting residence requirements of city department heads.

McKinley Eagle resigned as chairman of the Ponca Tribal Council and member of the Ponca Tribal business committee. He had worked for the Public Health Service of the Division of Indian Affairs since 1957, but according to the service’s policy, no employee is allowed to participate in tribal affairs. Eagle was the oldest living Ponca Indian tribal councilman, a hereditary chief, and had been on the council since 1932. His position was to be left vacant until the policy could be challenged.

J.D. and Downing Johnson of the local Softwater Service accompanied officials of interested companies to the Codding Armour Research Ranch near Foraker. Considerable progress had been made in a 2-year testing program of soft water as an aid to fattening beef.

The City Commission appointed L.A. Farmer, R.L. Bosworth, Mrs. Paul T. Powell, Mrs. Fred Dowling, Mrs. Frank Searcy, and Mrs. Allan Muchmore to the Hutchins Memorial Board.

The Chamber conducted a search for Ponca City’s friendliest, most courteous employee. Over 600 names were submitted and 27,000 ballots were cast. Miss Flora Cohlman, from Hickman’s Hardware, and Roy Webb, from Nuckols’ Service Station were winners.

Gordon Holland and Keith Wittmer were named team captains of the sustaining membership drive for Kaw Dam and Reservoir Assn.

The school board authorized purchase of ten acres at $15,500 for a new school on East Prospect.

Dr. John Gilbert, president of Kay-Noble County Medical Society, announced a mass oral polio immunization was planned. In three hours, 20,000 doses of the vaccine were given.

More than 25,000 people toured Conoco’s new $11,750,000 research center open house on May 10.

The Chikaskia River Bridge on the Ponca City-Blackwell shortcut road was officially opened. Named the Goodson Bridge, it honored Dora Goodson, area pioneer.

Miss Neva Bell Harrod retired from Roosevelt School after teaching for 44 years.

The Men’s Club held their annual Rose Show. The 510 entries were viewed by 1,200 people, with Ivan Berger winning top honors.

Six jetties were built in the Arkansas River using federal funds. They were to protect the city’s main water gathering line and water wells from washing away during floods.

On June 1, library patrons checked out 1,097 books during the 11 hours the library was open. According to Gertrude Sterba, librarian, this represented 100 books an hour or more than a book a minute.

Jim Morrison was named president of the 1962 Community Chest drive with Jack Bowker as fund drive chairman. The goal was $89,837 and they raised $94,694.

As of June 15, area elevators had received 1.9 million bushels of wheat, with an average yield of 25 bushels per acre.

The Traffic Authority was making a study of speed limits in the city and considering the possibility that speed limits were too slow.

The City approved Jaycees boat races at Lake Ponca on Labor Day.

On August 1, barricades were removed, and the Highland underpass was opened. Construction had begun in June, 1961.

Continental Bowl opened on N. 14th.

Jack Davenport donated the original ticket office of the famous 101 Ranch Roundup for the rodeo. A total of 7,000 spectators enjoyed the rodeo performances.

Ponca Military Academy had a capacity enrollment of 150 cadets representing 12 states and two foreign countries.

T.J. Cuzalina and Dee Sims chaired the first annual Cherokee Strip golf tournament at the Ponca City Country Club.

City Commissioners set a 10:00 p.m. curfew for minors at Lake Ponca.

Candy Stripers, the voluntary teen-age service group at the hospital, chalked up 1700 summer service hours.

Charles Stolper announced the formation of Temple Emanuel and the plans to build a Jewish house of worship.

Billy Jo Nimmo announced plans to build a 41-room nursing home for $25,000 on Airport Road. Glen Conklin was going to construct a $150,000 nursing home with housing for 56 patients.

In October, The Soroptimist Club hosted the first public major event, a style show, in the new Hutchins Memorial Auditorium.

In August, the Army engineers asked the Senate Public Works subcommittee to approve the $83,230,000 for the Kaw Reservoir. Over 70 businessmen and civic leaders met to kick off the fund drive to underwrite the project for the next three years. Congress authorized construction of the Kaw Reservoir on October 14, and sent the bill to the White House for a signature.

H.H. Patterson sold Pat’s Potato Chip Co. to Guy’s Foods. He had operated the business that his parents founded in 1927 at the Poncan Theatre.

In November, Oklahomans elected a Republican governor for the first time in history.

Paul Lawrence sold his Lawrence Concrete Co. on U.S. 77 to Chandler Materials Co.

Evans & Throop Construction started digging up and repairing portions of 14th Street from South Avenue to the north city limits.

The new Thunderbird 40-unit motel on South 14th St. had a two-day open house.

The city annexed 131 acres on the west side, including Hampton and Kupka properties, the Drive-in Theater and the Selvey Addition.