September 19, 2007 Edition

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Frankly Speaking

John Bland

Historic WR photo featured in LR paper

Tom Waldron of Walnut Ridge received a copy of a recent Arkansas Democrat-Gazette from retired Judge Steele Hays of Conway. The newspaper's Arkansas Postcard Past by Steven Hanley featured the 1917 photo of H.L. Ponder in Walnut Ridge. He was standing in front of the log cabin where he was born.

At the time of the photo, Ponder was president of the state Senate. Hanley states that Ponder's father, Col. W.M. Ponder, had established Walnut Ridge in the 1870s. The town was named for a nearby ridge and the area's walnut trees. It was on the route of the St. Louis, Iron Mountain and Southern Railroad.

My hat is off to our three Lawrence County Election commissioners. They are John Allen, Lee Turnbull and Pat Whitmire.

From what we have learned, they put in many hours to insure that Tuesday's school election would be conducted smoothly.

That job includes many details, from complying with the ever-changing election laws, working with poll workers from various parts of the county and counting votes cast by a choice of paper or electronic voting. Our election commissions are under-appreciated, non-paid and often only recognized when something goes wrong.


64 Years Ago

In the Good Old Days, 64 years ago, The TD reported that an original idea was carried out in the celebration of the 83rd birthday of M.J. Kelley at Hoxie on Sept. 12.

Five cakes with a total of 188 candles were placed on the table for Mr. Kelley, Mr. M.W. Erwin and Marion M. Erwin, all of Hoxie, and Mike Massey and Jill Starr of Miami, Ariz.

The cakes and candles represented the September birthdays of four generations.

This month, Mr. Marion M. Erwin celebrates his 89th birthday. His Arizona nieces and nephews said, "If we were to have this celebration today, our family would have added one more September birthday, but only two generations would be represented. Now, there would be four cakes with a total of 297 candles."

They also wished their uncle a very happy birthday.

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