Hi everyone! So glad to have all of you back again this fourth of July week. We are truly blessed today to be living in a nation where our forefathers were willing to lose their wealth and lives to establish a new nation under God Almighty. Since January we have been reliving the lives of Johnny and Mary Lou who grew up near Sand Springs in northwestern Webster county. For many of us they have become our newspaper family. Our couple grew up during the 1850’s and eventually were married when our American civil war began. Our Johnny joined the Union army and Mary Lou stayed home living a life of mental anguish separated from her husband. Years pass and our Mary Lou has become the clerk and manager of the town's only Mercantile store with Mr Kissee as her boss and owner of most of the town.
At this time in our history personal travel and freight deliveries were limited to horses and wagons on the infamous Wire Road through our county. We learned last week that Sand Springs is planning the biggest event in its history. The St Louis -San Francisco railroad company is sending an executive to Sand Springs to explain the advantages of rail service through Webster county and then onto Springfield, Mo. Meanwhile: let’s be a little birdie peeking back into the past and observe and listen to what is going on behind the scenes on the day of the celebration. A new barn has been constructed to host the day's contest, fun and evening hoe down. The musicians are rolling in and practicing their songs. Aroma from numerous fires and spits cooking hogs and beef brisket can be smelled everywhere. Ladies baking pies, young boys squeezing the apples for fresh apple cider. Horses and wagons are rolling in from miles around with their families to enjoy the day of fun. Horse
shoe throwing contest, horse racing, pie eating, three legged races, anvil throwing, wild bronc riding and much more. Music will be heard in the air with cloggers coming all the way from Springfield to exhibit their fancy footwork. The day's fun will begin after Mr Kissee gives his opening speech to outline the contest and give everyone a warm welcome. ( Let’s take a peek at Mr Kissee and Mary Lou) Mr Kissee, (pulls out his pocket watch) “it’s nine thirty. We officially begin at ten o’clock sharp. Go tell everyone to assemble at the podium.” Mary Lou, “yes sir, Mr Kissee, everyone is waiting and ready for you. (Mary Lou points) “Look over behind the livery stable the men are already getting their horses ready for the big race after your speech.” Mary Lou, “Where is our railroad executive? Shouldn’t he be here by now?” Mr Kissee, “never mind about him he’ll be here! His introduction and speech isn’t until 6:00. Your job is to focus on keeping the contest going smoothly.” Mary Lou, (gives Mr Kissee a concerned and worried look.) Mr Kissee walks over to the stage and welcomes everyone and displays a list of events with the first exciting event to be the horse race with a new saddle as a prize for first place.
The contest begins when the horses line up and Mr Kissee fires his pistol into the air and the fun and excitement begins for the day. The hours of excitement, feasting and events continue smoothly until:( Ollie Rimzy-Mary Lou’s father) “Mary Lou, come here! Keester Shoehammer is waiting for you to accept his invitation to the hoedown this evening.” Mary Lou, I’m a married woman! You know that! Ollie, “He ain’t coming back! When are you going to forget that lousy yankee you married before the war?” Mary Lou, “leave me be!” (Mary Lou turns around and walks away from her father) O K my friends we have reached a quitting point for this week all too quickly! I thought we could meet the end with this edition but there were too many details to share. Next week there will be fireworks and hot tempers during the hoedown. The finish line to this story is close, do not miss what happens when Keester Shoehammer and her father create a bad scene at the hoedown next week!
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