History

With politics in the air, I recall that casting my first vote in a U.S. presidential election in 1960 created a dilemma for me. Who should get my vote?” Two-term Vice President Richard M. Nixon or the dashing challenger, John F. Kennedy.    Wait a second . . . he’s not that old, you might be...
I've written previously about the Topaz community near the western side of Howell County in Douglas County. Northern Howell County has many ties to the place. Several families still living here trace their origin to the Norfork River, its headwaters, and the people who initially settled here....
Like Sherlock Holmes, the fictional English detective, I have an older, smarter brother. Jack will admit he is four years older but deny that he is smarter. Nevertheless, my observation is true. Generally, this has proved to be a blessing, but at times during my childhood, I would have cringed at...
For over a decade following the Civil War, parts of Southern Missouri and North Arkansas were plagued by vigilantism in various forms directed at African Americans. In Howell County, the conflict was primarily political, and violence was limited between white citizens of the Radical Republican...
In 1963, a changing tide, or, maybe, a small hurricane rolled in with the arrival of tough-as-nails Joel Case. Coach Case, another Mizzou football letterman, had a swagger that he imparted to the team. Fans started coming to the games again. My mom said part of the reason for the increased...
I am indebted to Dave Malone for the answer to a question I posed the last issue. Two separate groups of African Americans immigrated to Howell County after the Civil War. Roughly ten years separated them, and I puzzled as to how they might be interrelated. The answer is they were not. In 1869...
The State Historical Society of Missouri and the St. Louis Ambassadors are teaming up to develop a bicentennial time capsule with a goal to collect items that document Missouri's past, present and future. The two organizations are asking for public participation in this project. "The time...
In last week's edition of "The Way We Were" column, in the caption to the photo of Speedo Harmon and the 1950 Bear "bantam weight" backfield, I mistakenly identified some of the players by the wrong jersey numbers. The caption should have been: Sony "Buck" Stringer (20), Junior Christopher (22),...
The current news concerning whether football will be played in colleges this fall got me to thinking about football in Willow Springs back in my day—the Fifties and Sixties. During those decades, I knew all the coaches, and either played for them or had them as teachers. The boys who suited up...
It is my impression, based on source documents I've read in the old courthouse and county records elsewhere, the non-white population of Howell County continued to diminish after the Civil War. It remained low for decades, below one percent of the total population. Negroes freed after the war did...

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Howell County News

110 W. Main St.,
Willow Springs, MO 65793
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