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Ponca City Information

Ponca City History

1971

The Ponca City Information website is not affiliated nor associated with the City of Ponca City, the website is provided by the Ponca City Publishing Company, Inc. as an information website for Ponca City, Oklahoma.

1971 — The U.S. Corps of Engineers agreed to close 32 miles of roads, rebuild 19 miles of relocated roads, and build five bridges in the area of Kaw Dam and Reservoir.

James Buttram and Jerry Evans purchased controlling interest in Acme Foundry in Blackwell.

In January, Leon Nelson, City Manager, and Jim McNeese, mayor, visited the New York studio of the late Bryant Baker, sculptor of the Pioneer Woman statue. They returned to Ponca City with many items from the studio, including two bronze sculptures, 34 plaster maquettes, hundreds of photos and letters, pedestals, and tools.

The Ponca Indian Tribe voted to accept an award from the Indian Claims Committee for $991,514.96 as compensation for their former reservation in Nebraska.

Claude Braudrick received the first “Outstanding Chamber Member” award at their annual banquet.

The YMCA Board of Directors accepted the new “Y” building from contractors, Robertson Construction.

Jerry Runyan, assistant football coach at Po Hi for seven years, was named head coach.

In February, John W. Raley, Jr., local attorney, received the George Washington Honor Medal Award by Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge, Pa. for outstanding contributions to patriotism, humanity and citizenship.

John Terken, New York City sculptor, completed restoration of the sculptures in the Bryant Baker collection. They were then displayed in the former garage area of the Cultural Center in a replica of Baker’s studio.

Ponca City Hospital announced the establishment of a Department of Nuclear Medicine and X-Ray Therapy Services.

In March, Kay County residents gave overwhelming approval to the establishment of a vocational-technical school.

On April 6, voters went to the polls in record numbers to elect Ernest Trout Jr. as mayor, from a field of eight candidates.

Construction work on four-laning Lake Road from 14th St. east closed the area for several weeks.

The Government agreed to build a $445,000 school at the new Kaw City.

Midwest Creamery was sold, and eventually became a part of Farm Fresh Dairy.

From April 29 to May 2, over 150 Airstream trailers invaded Wentz Camp for a caravanners rally.

The city removed elm trees from the east side of Po-Hi campus to add another lane on 7th Street.

In May, the city annexed 68 acres, extending city limits to include six blocks north of Hartford between Pecan Road and West Lake Ponca. They also approved making Fifth Street four lanes.

Ray Lessert Jr. donated the land for five baseball diamonds to Ponca City Kids, Inc.

Mayor Trout appointed a study committee to review the proposed city charter amendments to enlarge the city commission to five and to provide for a runoff election when needed.

In August, Gov. Hall appointed Lowell Doggett as district judge to fill the unexpired term of the late Lester Maris.

Planning commissioners approved the preliminary plat of Woodridge Place, two miles east of the city on Lake Road.

Enrollment in public schools was 6,647, down 126 from a year ago. Numbers include transfers from Unity High School, which closed, and the 7th and 8th grades at St. Mary’s parochial school, that eliminated its two upper grades.

In October, commissioners approved an ordinance establishing an animal control commission.

The local housing authority chose the site between 2nd and 3rd streets and Hazel and Broadway for a 120-dwelling unit low-rent facility for the elderly.

Fire destroyed the Long-Bell Lumber Co. store and yard in November. It had been in business since the land run of 1893.

The late Bill Pickett of 101 Ranch fame was enshrined in the National Rodeo Hall of Fame. He had originated the sport of bulldogging.

A community indoor swimming pool at the “Y” was being considered.