Thursday, October 06, 2005


(Originally run 4/4/04)

Ernie Simpson

On old highway 67 (now Davis Street) two events occurred while we lived there in 1947, and I remember them both, but can't confirm either...

The Searcy Dairy was called a pasteurization plant, and was a highly technical business. Dad told stories of the importance of the quality control of that place, and how detailed it was. Looking for Marion Moye and 'Bunn' Benton, I found one reference: Dr. Muncey, in his book, says the plant burned in 1947, I vaguely remember that, because dad then went to work at the Searcy Laundry. The dairy was never rebuilt.

Also in 1947, Mr. W.L. Mason, the Superintendent of Searcy Schools died when his car hit the bridge just north of the fairgrounds, and drowned in the swollen backwater of that flooded creek.

Perhaps someone might remember that and confirm?

Looking back now at the time we lived out on old highway 67, my parents were true partners in many ways. Sometimes humorous, sometimes creative.

They had a project once when we lived out by the poor farm; I think now the solution was just the way things had to be done.

Dad had bought this old Model A, and it was a real dog. The exhaust system leaked, and the back floorboards were ruined from carrying blocks of ice home from the ice plant. You could see the ground going by looking through the big hole in the floorboards. While choking on the exhaust fumes, I might add. "Be careful, son, keep your leg out of that big hole," dad says.

Mom and dad brainstormed and decided to spiffy that car up a little. One nice summer day, in the back yard, probably on a Saturday morning, they took a tub of water, washed the old car, and wiped it down. Then they took a couple of quarts of glossy black paint and brushes and gave it a paint job!

I'm sure, standing several feet away, it wouldn't look too bad, but they just figured this was the easiest way to solve the problem of an ugly car. Surprisingly, dad got several offers from folks wanting to buy the shiny old car with the brush strokes on it, but he hung on to it.

Adverse times call for creative solutions. Don’t you wish you owned that car now? Speaking of which ….

Anita Hart Fuller

We're really enjoying your latest, Ernie.

Wasn't Bun Benton, the dairyman, the father of Harold Lee Benton - who during our early years was a classmate? Can't remember when he dropped out of school, or where he went. Bob and I remember his dairy was out beyond our house on Arch Street. I'm sure William Harold "Cotton" Fuller and especially Harold Gene Sullivan would remember. Maybe Don Thompson.

Bob and I, too, remember the flooding, in that our parents drove out there to "look at" the water!!!! I remember being in the back seat of our car -- don't we wish we still had those cars? -- and being sort of scared. Of what? I guess that we'd somehow float away with the tide.

Cliff Wiggs

What an interesting story about your Dad's dog. Reminded me of something that happened in my own life. Dad used to yell for me to get up and build a fire in the stoves, when I was a kid. I'd jump out of bed, run into the living room and build a fire in the heating stove, then proceed to build one in the cook stove. By that time, the heater would be just rip-roaring and puffing like a freight train, so I'd turn the damper off and go back to bed.

If Dad called, you never let him repeat. To do so, would be quite dangerous. Many is the time I have heard him call and awaken me from a sound sleep … after I'd married and left home -- and I'd immediately jump straight up in bed. How indelible some things become in your mind!

Ramona “Baby” Palmer Riddle

Ernie, I was reading your journal about the Crosby Community and thought I would add to it. My parents bought our farm on Crosby road in the 50's. We lived on Woodruff until the late 5o's then they bought another farm across the road and we moved to Crosby. I thought it was the worst day of my life moving to the country. The farm house on the land was not nearly as nice as the house in town but, as it turned out, all my friends loved coming there.

We had our horses and raised cattle, my brother Bo raised pigs one year for FFA. When it snowed. we built sleds and pulled them behind trucks or tractors. I am still amazed that we did not lose arms or legs because when we stopped the sled slid under the truck if the brakeman was not pretty fast.

In 1963, my parents built a new house on the original farm where they lived the remainder of their lives. Ironically, I am now living in the house on Crosby Road.

Did you know that in the 40's Crosby was considered strawberry country. There are articles in the White County history books about it. Most of the community as such is now history. The road is paved and most of the original families that lived here are gone. Troy Williams is still down there however. It seemed we were a very long distance from town back then but now it is almost in town. Such is progress. Crosby Road was once traveled very little and is now like a speedway all the time.

Anyway I just wanted to update you on Crosby progress in case you haven't been out this way in a while.

Dan E. Randle

Ernie, your mention of Wanda Skaggs caused a little chuckle. I use to date Wanda and still dated her after she recovered from her bout with polio. Seems that we had similar taste in our girl friends, Lois and Wanda.

I wonder what ever happened to Wanda. Do you know?

Enjoyed your 3 part history. I guess I should put together something similar. Mine would be a trip from Wilson through West Memphis, West Memphis to Searcy. Of course all are located in Arkansas.

Tom Pry

We note with regret that Comer Boyett, husband of Susie Hoffman Boyett, died April 1, 2004. I never had the pleasure of meeting Comer but, as Susie is a special lady, her husband must’ve been a special man.

Our thanks to Roland King for letting us know about it.


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