Monday, September 1, 2014

Sheriff Candidates in 1962

Everyone wanted to be Sheriff of Lawrence County in 1962. Nine men ran on the Democratic Primary ballet and one on the Republican ballet to replace Eddie Ryan, the incumbent.  
Among those Republicans were: Rex Girton, Leo M. (Sarge) Cochran, Harry Stockfleet, Don E. Martin, Walter R. Bogard, Robert D. (Bob) Dickerson, Edward (Ed) Gates, Robert Lee Moore, and James (Jimmy Joe) Baker.
From various ads in the newspapers readers learned that:
·         Leo M. “Sarge” Cochran was born and reared in Lawrence County. He enlisted in the Army in 1924 and was discharged in 1927. He was called to active duty again by the act of Congress in 1941, having served in World War II and the Korean conflict. He received the Korean service medal with two bronze stars. He was officially retired from the Army July 15, 1959 as a master sergeant.
·         R.D. ‘ Bob’ Dickirson was 40 years old, in excellent health and had been married for 20 years. He had 2 children, 2 grandchildren, and worked in public works for 20 years.  He was mature with an everyday knowledge of the needs of the citizens and a desire to assist mankind in their problems with all sincerity. His wife, Hattie, joined him in the desire to prove that they could fulfill the obligations of the office of sheriff honestly efficiently and courteously and in such a manner as to make new friends and retain present ones. He was a native of Lawrence County, educated in Lawrenceville Schools, and a high school graduate.  He was also interested in the development and civic activities for the betterment of Lawrence County. He was  a veteran, a family man and industrious. He was also a Standard Oil Service station operator in Lawrenceville. 
·         Don Martin was a family man, a veteran, experienced in county government and qualified.

·         Harry Stockfleet was qualified and experienced.
  • Sherman Montgomery, Jr. announced that he would be a candidate  on the Republican primary ballot, and ran unopposed.   He was born in Knox County in 1924 and married Kathleen Henderson Montgomery. They were both graduates of Vincennes University. For more than eight years Mr. Montgomery was associated with Montgomery Buick and then was associated with McCormick Motors in Lawrenceville.  He was also active in promoting and managing Little League baseball in Lawrenceville. If elected he said the people of Lawrence County would have the assurance that he would not have any outside interests and would devote all his time to the job.


Don Martin
Leo Cochran
R.D. ‘ Bob’ Dickirson won the Democratic primary.   At the November 1962 election, Sherman received 4163 votes over Dickirson’s 3698.  Sherman  served one term as Lawrence County Sheriff. 

Sherman Montgomery Jr. 
Harry Stockfleet
Bob Dickirson

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Aldridge Marriage and Fillmore School


Ralph and Bobbie Aldridge were married December 22, 1956.
Fillmore School  Wildcats 1952
Front row:  Victor Shipley, Ron Barnett, John Cunningham, ? ,?, Richard Vandermark, Jr, David Cunningham
Back Row: Bonnie Puntney, Patty Newell, Dick Hodges, _Powell, ? ,Sam Phillips, Ralph Phillips, ?
Rear: Brad Schrader, Teacher
Thanks to J. Loos for making these identifications.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Frank G. Anderson, County Treasurer

Frank G. Anderson was born in Denison Township on Christmas Eve, December 24, 1886. His father John Anderson was a farmer who earlier held the office of County Treasurer and was a native of Lawrence County having been born here October 5, 1856. The grandfather of Frank G. Anderson, also named John, was a pioneer of the County having located in Lawrence Township and being one of the 14 earliest settlers of the County. His death occurred in 1873.

John Anderson (the second), father of Frank G. Anderson, attended the early subscription schools of his neighborhood and was brought up to farm life. He married Alice Harvey, who was born in Illinois in 1862. After marriage he moved to Denison Township, where he bought 40 acres of land, which he cleared off, placed under cultivation and made other improvements. He then sold this property and bought another farm. The children born to John Anderson and wife were: Janie, Sarah, James, Frank G., John, Edward, Joseph, Alice and Mary, all born and reared in Denison Township. John Anderson was a Republican while his father was a Democrat. The former took an active part in public affairs, served as Commissioner of Highways, Justice of the Peace, Supervisor, and then was elected County Treasurer.  He had served only one year and three days when his career was cut short by death in 1907, being then in his 52nd year. Fraternally he was a member of the Masonic fraternity, the Modern Woodmen and the Modern Americans. In religious views he was a Methodist.


Frank G. Anderson attended the district schools of Denison Township, and later took a course in the commercial department of the Valparaiso University at Valparaiso, Indiana. When his father died he took up the duties of the latter as County Treasurer, and was elected to that office at the following election.  He was nominated for the office on his 21st birthday, and took charge February 8, 1908, serving until 1910. Mr. Anderson was a Mason, an Odd Fellow of St. Francisville, and a Modern Woodmen. He also was a member of the Methodist church. Mr. Anderson was a single man at the time he succeeded his father and assumed the duties of the Treasurer's office. He married Miss Sarah Belcher of West Baden, Indiana on August 11, 1909 whom he had known from childhood and had formerly lived in Lawrence County.

The above information was taken from McCleave's 1910 History and  Biography book.  (We have a few of these still for sale at the museum and library.)

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Nationally Accredited Flower Show Judge- Thelma Akin

Thelma Akin 1978

Thelma Akin 1978

Thelma Akin 1978
After studying extensively, attending three special schools which encompassed five courses in flower show procedures, artistic design and horticulture and then successfully passing an intensive examination, Thelma Akin earned the title of “Nationally Accredited Flower Show Judge” for the National Council of Sate Garden Clubs.  She also helped reorganize a junior garden club in Lawrenceville after assisting some 4-H girls in her neighborhood with show arrangements.  Five of the girls competed in the Junior Horticulture Association Competition in 1986 and three of them were grand national winners—Maria Price, Courtney Koertge and Kelly Howell.  Amanda Dorney and Tracy Mitchell also entered. Mrs. Akin was married to Clarence Akin and the couple had  four children. 

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Shiloh Church Educational Building

(From the Bridgeport Leader June 8, 1961)
On Saturday, June 3, 1961 the Shiloh Baptist Church completed payment for its educational building. The modern, well-planned building was first used on the Sunday of Mother's Day May 13, 1956.

The building was erected at the cost of $20,811.22.  On May 1st, 1957 $8065.53 was owed to the First Federal Savings and Loan in Vincennes.

The mortgage burning ceremony constituted a part of the morning worship service on Sunday, June 11, 1961.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Bridgeport Bank Clock

Bridgeport Leader January 19, 1961
The First National Bank of Bridgeport informed citizens and visitors alike of the correct time and up- to- the -second temperature with the installation of another electric marvel. President W.B.  Gray of the bank placed the clock and temperature chart into service on Friday morning.

Many made special visits to the bank to see the new sign and admire the utility, thoughtfulness and usefulness of the gift to the community. Watches and clocks were checked as electricians brought the unit into perfect movement with the elements and the time.

A ‘small birdhouse’ was mounted on the roof of the bank building. Within this small box was the temperature register. Electronic impulses through the use of registers transferred the reading of the heat and cold figures for the electric sign to display. The chart recorded temperatures of 40° below and 119 above zero.

The movement of the electric clock has become a recognized unit and a necessity in many homes. Every 5 seconds the unit changed from time to temperature or vice versa. The sign was leased from the American Sign and Indicator Corporation with home offices in Spokane, Washington. The entire unit was designed and constructed for the First National Bank. It was visible in all four directions from the corner of the bank building. The building was jointly constructed by the Bank and the Bridgeport Lodge 368 AF & AM who occupied the second floor.

During clear weather the sign could be read for 2 to 4 blocks. It changed fast enough a motorist might catch the time and temperature while driving in one block. This was the first such clock -temperature sign erected in the surrounding counties according to reports given to this newspaper.



President W.B. Gray turned on the twin switches throwing 110 volts into the sign to bring it to life  Friday morning. The maze of wiring might be understood by some experts, but it seemed complicated to the uninitiated.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Sunshine Girls BTHS 1961

BRIDGEPORT LEADER MAY 4, 1961 Sunshine Student Aides Are Capped

The Sunshine Society of BTHS held their annual mother-daughter tea Friday, April 28 in the East Gym. President Jo Jayne Schrader welcomed the mothers, who were all introduced by their daughters. The new officers for 1961 – 62 were introduced. They are: Pres., Donna Doty, Vice Pres., Betty Jacobs; Sec., Ruth Houghtaling; Treas., Diana Lewis; and Historian, Kitty Eyer.

The new “Student Aides” program in conjunction with the administration of Lawrence County Memorial hospital, was explained by Mrs. Gloria Bousley, faculty advisor for Sunshine Society.

The capping ceremony was held by candlelight and was most impressive. Donna Doty read the poem “More Than a Nurse.” The Student Aides sang “I’ll Walk with God” accompanied by Dee Dee Glover at the piano. 

Mrs. Martha Ernst and Mrs. Barbara Gognat, instructors of the Student Aides, presented the caps and pins to the 13 Sunshine Girls who have completed the entire course. They were Judi Kay Barrett, Jane Ann Brookhart, Donna Doty, Christeen Fornshell, Carolyn Hesher, Laura Joiner, Ora Joiner, Elaina Litherland, Beverly Perry, Mildred Ridgley, Barbara Stoltz, Linda Summers, and Patsy Vinson.

The girls presented their instructors with yellow rose corsages and charm bracelets bearing the name of each girl.


Refreshments of punch, cookies and sandwiches were served by Betty Jacobs and Dianne Garrard.