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00:00:00 - Moved from Tulsa

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Partial Transcript: EC: Let's see. Now your name is Wendell List, right?
WL: Wendell O list.
EC: Wendell O List. And this is July the 16th. Why don't we just start then. Tell me how you happen to come to Bristow.
WL: Well, my dad and I bought the Ford agency here in 1923, and we took possession of it the 1st of October, 1923.
EC: Okay. Where'd you come from?
WL: We came from Tulsa.
EC: Okay.

Segment Synopsis: Wendell moved to Bristow from Tulsa after he graduated to help his dad run the Ford Agency.

Keywords: Ford Agency; Tulsa

Subjects: Ford Agency; Tulsa

00:00:46 - Tulsa Race Riots

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Partial Transcript: And that was the, the year that they had the race riots.
EC: That's right. Okay.
WL: And I, the, the race riot has become more and more wild and wicked. Ever since that time. I was all through the whole thing.
EC: Oh, were you?
WL: Yes.
EC: Well, that didn't have much to do with Bristow, but tell me what you do know about it. I've heard some of those conflicting stories.
WL: Well, the latest story I've heard was that there was 39 people killed in the Tulsa race riots, and I can almost guarantee that there was only three.

Segment Synopsis: Wendell talks about witnessing the events that occurred during the Tulsa Race Riots in 1921.

Keywords: Brady Theater; Greenwood; McNulty Park; Palace Clothiers; Paul Jankowsky; Standpipe Hill; Tulsa Central High School; Tulsa Race Riot, Tulsa, Okla., 1921

Subjects: Tulsa Race Riot, Tulsa, Okla., 1921

00:09:00 - Acquiring the Ford Agency

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Partial Transcript: EC: Well, getting back to Bristow there. How did you, your father, happen to pick Bristow? Was it just because the agency was available or was there some other…
WL: No, actually, an aunt of mine, I got a call. My aunt's [indecipherable], Mr. EM Vanderslice (ph) was a Ford dealer in Tulsa, the only Ford dealer they had at that time. He also owned Ford agencies in Claremore and Pawhuska and Claremore. And I believe another one or two at that time you could, yeah, you [indecipherable]. And he also had the Ford Tractor Agency for area. And so he got killed in an accident in a freight yard.

Segment Synopsis: Wendell talks about moving to Bristow to partner with his dad to run the Ford Agency in October 1923.

Keywords: Claremore; EM Vanderslice; Ford; Harrisonville (Mo.); Pawhuska; Tulsa Central High School

Subjects: Ford Agency

00:11:14 - Oil Boom

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Partial Transcript: EC: Was the oil boom still on in Bristow?
WL: That place the oil boom is pretty well over by that time, however, most of the oil field work was still being carried on with teams. And they had these big groups of people who were [indecipherable]. They had like that type work and they had a lot of cases of photos here. Can't remember, I can't remember his name right offhand this little [indecipherable], you know, to remember.

Segment Synopsis: Wendell remembers the oil boom coming to an end around the time he moved to Bristow.

Keywords: oil boom

Subjects: oil boom

00:11:54 - Wrestling

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Partial Transcript: WL: But he was quite a well-known fellow and there was a fellow here named Williams. It was a [indecipherable], and he was also a wrestler and they had professional wrestling in Bristow at the time. And most of the wrestling was [indecipherable] on at a building, which is now the J&J Cafe down on south main.
EC: Yeah. Right.
WL: And then they also had some of their, their wrestling matches in the theaters. The old Walmur Theater is where the Community State is now located. And at that time, why they were all silent movies

Segment Synopsis: Wendell remembers there being professional wrestling in Bristow.

Keywords: J&J Cafe; Walmur Theater; professional wrestling

00:12:35 - Movie Theaters and Entertainment

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Partial Transcript: EC: That's the, I'm gonna ask you. I don't know for sure when, which movie started. I've heard of the Walmur . I've heard of the Princess, the Star, and I don't know which one.
WL: They were all here as I remember. I believe they were all here at the time that I was here. And then the the Walmur Theater had vaudeville quite a bit of the time. And they had regular vaudeville shows came in here. And then they had these touring shows came through.
EC: You were still young enough. Were you married by then?
WL: No, I, I was.
EC: Okay. You were young enough and single. What did a single young man do in Bristow for entertainment or,

Segment Synopsis: Wendell talks about the various movie theaters around Bristow and the things they did for entertainment, such as swimming at Cole's Park.

Keywords: Cole's Park; Joe Orr; Laurel Hotel; Louie Meyer; Princess Theater; Sapulpa; Star Theater; Walmur Theater; silent movies; swimming; vaudeville

Subjects: entertainment; movie theaters

00:15:40 - The Depression

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Partial Transcript: EC: Right. What about oh, I guess jumping ahead a little bit, but what effect did the Depression have on Bristow?
WL: As far as we were concerned, we never did notice it too much. The [indecipherable] business fell off and everybody, everybody came tightening their belts and all that sort of thing. But actually, most of us was somewhat of a primitive type and the Depression didn't hurt us too much. Of course there was lot people, [indecipherable]. And we had to do what they called their soup lines with the merchants around town.

Segment Synopsis: Wendell remembers the Depression as not having too great of an effect on him. He did say merchants would get together and provide soup in soup lines since there was no public assistance at that time.

Keywords: The Depression; public assistance; soup lines

Subjects: The Depression

00:16:40 - Radio Station

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Partial Transcript: EC: Backing up a little. You hear when the radio station was over here?
WL: Oh, yes. Yes. Ed Rollestone, [indecipherable] and previous to him though they had a radio station right down here in the old Chevrolet building they had up here on the second floor, this building right down here.
EC: They had one first.
WL: Yes, they had one first, a small one. And I don't know whether Ed was financially involved in that one. I'd rather think not, but it was in the second floor of the three-story building right here at Mercer's.

Segment Synopsis: Wendell recalls the radio station being in town, KFRU.

Keywords: Boyd Delano; Chevrolet building; Ed Rollestone; Jimmy Wilson & His Catfish Band; KFRU; KVOO; Mercer's; Merritt Delano; glass plant; radio station

Subjects: KFRU; KVOO; radio station

00:19:31 - First Radio

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Partial Transcript: WL: I had the first portable radio in this town.
EC: Did you?
WL: In an automobile? At that time, all of the receivers were these high price, expensive [indecipherable] or I forget the name of the other one, but they were very complicated. [Indecipherable] had about a dozen dials on them. And you got more static than you got sound. And they were tremendously difficult to operate. Oh, almost took an engineer just to operate one. They had a big harness set up on top and, but all, all of us kids found out that the that you could make a crystal set. Now, I don't know whether you ever saw a crystal.

Segment Synopsis: Wendell tells about having the first radio in an automobile in Bristow.

Keywords: Ford Coupe; radio

Subjects: radio

00:22:20 - World War II

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Partial Transcript: EC: Okay. Well that, that's interesting. What effect was any particular effect of World War II on Bristow, other than just what you'd expect?
WL: Well, they made a great deal more ceremony out of out of the war than we have in any subsequent time. At that time, whenever a group of boys were going to the army they always had the band out and they gave 'em a big sendoff and they always transported them on the train nearly always. And everybody in town would be the station.

Segment Synopsis: Wendell recalls there being quite a send off for troops heading off to war.

Keywords: WWII; train depot; troop trains

Subjects: WWII; troop trains

00:23:22 - Bristow Business - Cotton & Peanuts

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Partial Transcript: EC: A business like Bristow, it went through its cotton days before you came, really.
WL: And at the time I came here, I believe there were seven or eight cotton gins in operation. The biggest thing, yeah, two biggest ones were Kelly's that's Albert Senior and he was, one of them was down on the south lane, right there at the railroad track, and the other one was down here on east seventh street. The building is now destroyed there.
EC: And then of course, the oil business came in and after...
WL: All business is already pretty well established. I think our main oil boom in Bristow was somewhere around 1921, 22 I think.

Segment Synopsis: Wendell remembers cotton and cattle being good business for people of Bristow, but also, peanuts added to the economy during that time.

Keywords: Chamber of Commerce; allotments; cattle business; cotton; cotton gin; garment factory; oil boom; peanut mill; peanut washing machines; peanuts; row cropping

Subjects: Bristow business

00:26:26 - Land & Housing

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Partial Transcript: EC: Well, has there been or have there been obstacles which you're aware [indecipherable] Bristow, I've heard, for example, there have been problems with housing [inaudible] its size [inaudible].
WL: RL Jones, who lives right out the edge town out here were principle land owners around here. RL owned nearly all the land west of town around the the city park and all out through there. And Albert Kelly and RL Jones had the growth pretty well shut off on the north and they wouldn't sell any land to anybody. So the growth had to be constrained to was constrained to just south and east pretty well. But they were both real civic minded in a way, except that they wouldn't sell their land.

Segment Synopsis: Wendell recalls RL Jones and Albert Kelly being prominent land owners.

Keywords: Albert Kelly; RL Jones; housing; land

Subjects: housing; land

00:27:53 - Bank Failures & Other Events

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Partial Transcript: EC: Well, have there been any particular events that you either witnessed during this time, heard about that maybe not everybody knows about that are worth recording, preserving? You weren't involved in any of the bank robberies or?
WL: Well, I was here when they happened and I was here when two of the banks went broke. The First National went broke there, hit [inaudible] and I can't remember the dates of any. But the first one that went broke was the First State Bank over on the corner where, Pacific Finance is over there, the corner of Seventh and Main on the east southeast corner. And that was a bank in there and it went broke.

Segment Synopsis: Wendell remembers there being several banks that failed in Bristow, and Clad Purdy ran an insurance agency and had influence in the town.

Keywords: Clad Purdy; Ed Rollestone; First National Bank; First State Bank; Groom Bank; Groom Brothers; Mr. Freeland; radio station

Subjects: Clad Purdy; bank failures; radio station

00:30:59 - Newspapers

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Partial Transcript: EC: Speaking of newspapers, I, I'm supposed to talk to Mr. Cook,
WL: Who's IL Cook who ran the paper here for years.
EC: Well, what's the story? I've heard that Cook and Nichols had quite a fight going over something. I don't know what.
WL: The main deal over that was that Cook put in a competitive newspaper.
EC: Ah.
WL: And Nichols tried to run him out of town.
EC: I see.
WL: But, but IL survived him and finally bought his old newspaper after he died.

Segment Synopsis: Wendell remembers the competition between rival newspapers owned by IL Cook and LM Nichols.

Keywords: IL Cook; LM Nichols; newspaper

Subjects: newspaper

00:32:36 - Politics

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Partial Transcript: EC: What about politics? You ever get involved in politics in Bristow?
WL: No, not particularly. I run for mayor one time and they beat my tail, but I was very unhappy with a lot of the things that were going on, and I thought that I could put the city of Bristow on a business basis, rather on a political basis, but they didn't agree with me.
EC: So as politics, as far as city elections are concerned, has it been a, a partisan thing or just an individual thing?
WL: I think probably more of it is between Democrats.

Segment Synopsis: Wendell remembers politics in Bristow being rather nonpartisan. He also ran for mayor and lost.

Keywords: OG Ross; elections; mayor; nonpartisan; politics

Subjects: nonpartisan; politics

00:34:13 - Race Relations

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Partial Transcript: EC: Now we started talking about the Tulsa race riot. How have race relations been in Bristow?
WL: Race relations in Bristow have never been strained in any manner. My wife was teaching school here when the integration came to the school. And there's never been a, an incident of any, of, any consequence at all as far as the integration of the, of the races at all. Now, of course they do have, they did have a few little difficulties with maybe blacks, so that they had the same number with the whites, but the black schools over here, way over here on west tenth,yeah, I guess they're on west tenth.

Segment Synopsis: Wendell didn't feel there were any strained race relations in Bristow. He recalls the excitement of going to basketball games during that time.

Keywords: Haskell Thompson; basketball; integration; race relations

Subjects: race relations

00:35:23 - School Athletics

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Partial Transcript: EC: Well, I understand high school athletics have been fairly important to a town like Bristow.
WL: Bristow has been fortunate in either having good coaches, I think Hafer of course was the forerunner of our better athletic team. See, Hafer, who was still alive, I think saw him now over a couple years ago, and he lives in Edmond at present time. But EC Hafer is who our football field is named after. And, after he started this football going in a big way, we've had some excellent football teams. The fact is we've won the championship and been in the playoffs year after year years. Any football season is a highlight of Bristow and I think.

Segment Synopsis: Wendell recalls school athletics being a big deal in Bristow. He remembers Sapulpa being Bristow's biggest rival in football and champion hurdlers, Jack Carman and Sammy Allen.

Keywords: HC Hafer; Jack Carman; Sammy Allen; Sapulpa; athletics; football; hurdlers; rivalry; state championships

Subjects: Sapulpa rivalry; school athletics

00:37:57 - Highway Markings

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Partial Transcript: EC: Well, I know that there are a lot of things that I haven't touched on. Is there something I should have asked you about that comes to mind that ought to be preserved?
WL: Well, and one thing that you might be interested in, when I first came to Bristow, there were very few highways around here except just dirt roads. One of the first highway markings, I believe, was the old Ozark Trail. . And all it was, was a band of green and white paint around a tree or a fence post with [indecipherable] printed on this. And that was the original marking for any highway around Bristow. At that time, you could get lost a half a dozen times going from here to Tulsa. Because you just went on the section line roads.

Segment Synopsis: Wendell talks about the first highway markings on Ozark Trail. He remembers it was tough to get around and easy to get lost on section line roads.

Keywords: Ozark Trail; Sapulpa; Springfield, Missouri; highway markings; section line roads