The Bryan County Genealogy Library & Archives has a new book available. I bought a copy of “Caddo, I.T. - News of Yesteryear, 1901-1902” and I’m very pleased with it. I’ve already found some information and an obit that will be helpful in my family research. Rozell Sangster Thomas did the extractions and her work is always careful and accurate.
Here is a sample of the great articles in this new book:
May 16, 1902
Caddo three years Ago
A Comparison or Two by the Editor
It has been three years since the editor (J. S. Hancock) came to Caddo the first time and as our mind carries us back to that time, and we think of what our town is today , we are prone to say, the world do move”, paraphrasing, it would be, “Caddo do move.”
Three years ago Buffalo Street contained only five brick stores, and about a dozen wooden shacks, most of the business was done on Main Street.
The store of W. H. Ainsworth is the only one of the larger, better buildings left which was here then.
On Main Street we had the stores of G. W. Phillips, D. McCoy, W. H. Masterson, C. A. Hancock, W. H. Ainsworth, P. W. Arnold House & Health, Livery Stable, The Caddo Courier, Opera House, The Caddo Herald, and in the Hampton building near the Masonic Hall was the store of W. J. Moon.
On Buffalo Street were the establishments of W. T. Smith, F. S. Harvey, Franks Bros., E. T. Hamer, Ben Siegel, C. A. Manning, Homer & Elting, Dr. Long, R. T. Lynch, H. T. Ahrens, F. F Bryant & Son, E. O. Harrison, Smith & Sweeney, Farmers & Merchants Bank and The Racket Store.
Where Moon’s large brick buildings are now was almost a swamp, a two room residence occupied the lot on which Smith’s Pharmacy now is and where the Choctaw National Bank and the Dunlap Roberts buildings, A. S. Rutherford & Co. and John Droke are was a large deep pool with the McCoy Gin behind it. A. C. Pace and Smith & Belote occupied the iron buildings now occupied by Smith Cobb & Pace. Where W. T. Smith, W. P. Booker, Arnold & Attaway, Abney & Allen and the Herald now are were vacant lots with only the stone foundations laid.
There’s considerable change now; we have only one part of a block of the original frame buildings; others being replaced by imposing substantial bricks. We have a large number of new firms and new enterprises. We then had only one gin; now we have four. We had no telephone system, no graded streets, no adequate title to lots, no national bank, no power printing presses, no prospects for electric lights, no free schools, no 1500 population, not as good market for hay, grain, provisions, cotton or live stock. All those things have been added unto us in the last three years and we hope the next three years will bring us much more improvement.
We have other improvements than mentioned above; the new blacksmith shop of B. F. Self, and the brick shop of Peter Bloom. Leeper & Chiles were the only lumbermen. Others have come and gone. Now Arkansas Street has two fine yards, that of Leeper & Chiles and Rockwell Bros. & Co. J. F. Lamb was in the undertaking business but had not yet added furniture to his stock.
During these three years we had a cyclone, hail storm, green bugs, red bugs, humbugs, bad crops, good crops, fires, rains, drouth, heat and cold, yet we prospered.
Verily Caddo is a good place to live in, to work in, to thrive in. Our prospects are as good now as ever and progress is our forte. We predict as great progress the next three years as we made the last three.