Saturday, June 18, 2016

A Trip to Mineral Wells - Looking Back and Forward at 2016 Reunion

Mineral Wells High School
Class of 1962
Fifty Year Club Meeting 
Saturday June 11, 2016
Grace and peace to you fellow classmates. Heading west on 180 from Weatherford I saw a railroad bridge going over the highway. I could make out on that bridge the fading big letters in white: “H O M E” and I knew I was nearly there. Placed there by members of the class of 1960 to honor an English teacher who drove over from Fort Worth, it had once completely read “Melvin Go Home,” about 50 something years ago. The complete details of the painting are locked in Mr. Frank Waddy’s mind somewhere. The other side of the trestle said: “Melvin Stay Home,” until it faded away.
I drove into Mineral Wells from Dallas a little after eight in the morning. I noticed the big cross on the hill and the helicopter display just as you turn into town. I wanted to turn off and visit Clark Gardens but did not have the time. I noted where the new high school was as I drove west into town. The welcome sign seemed so big and I stopped by the old cemetery to get a photo. As I drove by the banks at Oak and Hubbard I remembered that a year ago I was looking for tornado damage, but did not see much then.

At Fourth and Hubbard a Texas flag and a Confederate battle flag flew from a well kept porch and I snapped a picture of our junior high a block west from there.

My goal, of course, was Jones’ Cafe and breakfast. Lots of trucks in front, baseball hats on customers that were not turned backward, and very efficient waitresses. I saw that the final bill was about a third less than what I pay in Dallas, and the food and coffee were great. Chicken fried steak was going to be the lunch special! I drove out SW 5th Avenue past our high school, now the school district headquarters, and ended up at the Woodland Park cemetery where it took me about ten minutes to find my parents markers that were completely covered with grass.

From there I headed north on Oak until I was at the 200 block of North Oak where my folks had their store. I spent a minute there looking around and headed on north to the Famous Well on NW 6th Street. I got some water and a birthday present for my wife there, looking at the historical items there was special. A block away on 7th Street I got out at our old house and picked up a few bluebonnet seed pods from the front yard and put them in the back seat to plant at home. I wondered at the transformation of the old Waddy house and grounds across the street. It looked like a movie set from the 1930s, but brand new. I told Frank at the reunion later how much it meant to me to be able to walk through their kitchen when I was a kid and have his mom, Gertrude, hand me a piece of her wonderful fried chicken.
About ten as I walked in the new high school someone from the 1967 greeter table handed me a program and tried to sell me a raffle ticket. Lots of people filled the entry hall. I headed for the coffee.


As I rounded the corner to the table area I was first greeted by Bill McQueary and Tom Shaw who were at a table with a 1962 Ram sign on it. Also, there were Suzanne Cliett Marsden and her husband, and soon Asher Cohen, Jr. and his wife, Kathy, joined us. Then Glenda Johnson came up and we all visited for a while. Sheriff Ray Patterson was the last to show up. Sitting at our table was Linda Taylor from the class of 64 and Bill’s wife, Barbara Ward, from 1965. Ms. Taylor asked me if I used to teach world history at the high school and I said “no, that was my brother.” She said she had taken history from him.
Wish I could give you a transcript of the very focused conversations at the table, it was fun visiting. Topics like Elmhurst, ballroom dance lessons above the Penny’s store, lost friends, the local draft board (think Vietnam), Jannelle White’s brothers, previous reunions, flooding in the Crystal Canal and whether or not you swam in it, stories of a number of unanswered marriage proposal letters to a certain class member, etc.

I thought I better register and went to the table controlled by Nancy Martin Buzbee, Linda White Moore, Melody Tuggle Carroll, and Lynn Tompkins Waddy. They showed me a list of who was registered, and said that Pallin Lee and Sue Hill were there the previous night, but would not be at the Saturday event. I noticed that some names on the list I had not seen yet. Because I had put Ms. Primm’s name on the back of my registration form for the award, I asked Nancy about the teacher who got the fourth teacher Hall of Fame award, and was so pleased to hear from her that Ms. Primm had won a close race for it! Registered, but so sorry I did not see you were: Lynda Lee Fox, Judy Smith Lee, Monty Sanders, Delores Bailey Sybert, Tommy Youngblood, Jim Hughey, Mike Hopkins, Delores Bolton Ayers. Like I said, Pallin and Sue came on Friday. So over twenty registered or attended. More than last year. Pretty, pretty good. Wait till 2017 and let’s all show up.

The class group headed into the comfortable auditorium about 10:45 and the program started. We got all the 1962 people in one area, a row or two, and took a couple of photos. The speech by the representative of the class of 1966 was about twenty five to thirty minutes long. Officers for next year for the 50 Year Club were named and someone from the class of 1962 named “Waddy” was mentioned, I think, it was corresponding secretary, probably Eugene. The pledge to the flag and singing the Alma Mater were memory lane stuff. Each class stood up with their class representative as the roll of classes was called, and a list in the program told who had passed since June 2015 from each class. That meeting was very efficiently run but there were no stage lights so people on the stage were in the dark. President Hank Gayler gave a report on the progress restoring the cottage, mentioned money a few times, and adjourned us to lunch. I asked Hank how close the Primm vote was after the meeting in the lunch area and he said that the board had to break the three way tie. The previous winners that she joined were Mr. Pat Simmons, Mr. Curt Scharnberg, and Mrs. Winnie Fiedler.

In the lunch area appeared a healthy happy Jessie Wright Teddlie, and after a few words with her I hit the way back to Dallas and as I passed the Fort Wolters gate and by that cross, I pondered that it was a fun trip, and I wondered how many more times the Lord is going to be willing to allow me this yearly road trip back H O M E, before I’m called home.
Bob Samuelson
Wuz Up? Class Reporter
June 12, 2016

Jewell Primm, Inducted into 2016 Teacher Hall of Fame

Jewell Van Landingham Primm

Perrin School Faculty - 1947
Mrs. Primm taught a group of the class of '62 in English year after year. We were very fortunate to be part of that group. She was organized and out to inspire us to explore new and old worlds. She was a handsome woman and very elegant, eloquent, prim, and proper. She stood, we sat, for years. She introduced us to the dark dysfunctional aspects of human nature with the Greek plays and stories of human fear like those of Poe and George Orwell. She taught how history and literature go hand in hand, and she took us by the hand with great energy and led us on a life long journey through the history of England and more.
She had me memorize a passage from one of our study books from 1961 and 62, Tennyson's Idylls of the King, from The Round Table section: "Man am I grown, a man's work I must do. Follow the deer? Follow the Christ, the King, Live pure, speak true, right wrong, follow the King -- Else, wherefore born?"
Lyda Jewel Van Landingham was born in Wise County on October 25, 1909. She grew up and went to school in Jack County. In 1910 her father, Addison Garland Van Landingham (age 34) from Arkansas and her mother Anna Whitaker Van Landingham (age 26) were living in Precinct 2 of Jack County. 
Children in the home besides Jewel were Addison E., age 11, and Jeral Dene born in Feb. 1907. In 1918 the roll of the Perrin school lists Jewel Van Landingham in the third grade and brother Gerald in the fourth. One can debate about her birth year, the "09" is whited out on the death certificate and a handwritten "10" placed as her birth year. The headstone says 1910. But the census taker Jesse E.
Terry, in Jack County dated his record May 5, 1910 and said Jewel was 7/12 of a year old on that date. So, if she was born in October 1910 she would not have been there for the census taker in May 1910. 
Jewel's father was listed as a farmer. Addison Van Landingham was a step brother to Jewel as the Van Landinghams were married about 1905. Anna's brother, Fred (Jewel's uncle) and his wife Mary Whitaker and their little girl farmed on the place next to the Van Landinghams. The census of 1930 taken in Jack county on April 30, 1930 shows Jewel Van Landingham, single, age 20 living on state highway 24 with her 23 year old single brother Gerald. Both are listed as public school teachers. Gerald was teaching in Weatherford in 1940, married in 1934 to Aline Corry with one child, Jewel's nephew, James Stuart Van Landingham born in 1939. James died in 2009.
In a 1940 school yearbook she is listed as Jewel Primm, an Elementary teacher in the Perrin School faculty. Who Mr. Primm was and what was his fate after 1930 remains a mystery. She is pictured among the faculty in the 1942 Perrin School year book. Her 97 page thesis for a Master's Degree in Science was presented to the graduate council of North Texas State Teachers College in August, 1945. It was titled: "The Relationship Between Mental Ability and Reading Achievement." See the text at: The 1948 yearbook lists her as an eighth grade teacher. By 1949 she is listed as the elementary grade school principal as well as teaching eighth grade. In 1953 a Burro yearbook shows Mrs. Primm as the English I teacher for Mineral Wells High School.

 Mineral Wells High School Faculty - 1962
She died of cancer after a twenty day stay in St. Joseph Hospital in Fort Worth, Texas on February 29, 1968. She is buried along side of her mother, Anna, in the Perrin Memorial Gardens Cemetery on March 3, 1968. Her last residence was listed as 511 West Hubbard, Mineral Wells, Texas. In 2010 she was nominated by Bill Ansley, MWHS class of 1961 for the MWHS Teacher Hall of Fame. Quoting Bill: she "taught us good manners, honesty, decorum, and ethics." He described her as "an outstanding teacher," providing "invaluable council and encouragement" and a "skill" teacher. Jewel's mother outlived her to be 96 and died in 1980. Her father died in 1962. Jewel's headstone displays an Order of the Eastern Star emblem with the motto (FATAL); "Fairest Among Thousands, Altogether Lovely." A good fit.

By Robert J. Samuelson
Source: Subject: Wuz Up? MWHS Class of 1962 - Isabelle Has Fallen and
Lyda Jewel VanLandingham Primm Date: February 1, 2015 6:18:56 AM CST

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

2016 Reunion Registration and Membership Dues

For the June 10 and 11, 2016 MWHS 40th Reunion

Send the following information to
MWHS 50 Year Club
215 N.W. 5th Ave.
Mineral Wells, TX 76067

Your Name and Class
Phone # and E-Mail

Membership Dues for 2016: $20.00

Associate Dues for 2016: $5.00
(Anyone who wants to be a member but did not attend MWHS)
Your Name 

Lunch: $20.00 each
Noon on Saturday

Please consider a donation to the Lillian Peek Home Economics Cottage Renovation and/or the Scholarship Fund.

Make checks payable to 50 Year Club. Credit Cards not accepted.

Don't forget to mail check/money order into office so we will have it in our office by May 27, 2016.

NOTICE: Your membership card and lunch ticket(s) will be held for you at your Class Registration Table. For those not attending, your membership card will be mailed upon request. Your check is proof of payment.

QUESTIONS: Please contact Corresponding Secretary Marguriete Crum
Club Office: 940-325-5600 TUES. and THURS. 10:00 A.M. - 2:00 P.M.


MWHS 50 Year Club 40th Reunion - June 10-11, 2016

This year's MWHS 50 Year Club 40th Reunion is scheduled for June 10 and 11 at Mineral Wells High School, 3801 Ram Boulevard. Friday evening's registration will begin at 5:00 p.m. and end at 7:30 p.m. so the ones working the registration tables can enjoy visiting also. Light refreshments (not a meal) will be available in the food court beginning at 5:00 p.m. Saturday's fellowship and registration will begin at 8:00 a.m. with coffee, juice and light breakfast. Registration will end at 10:30 a.m. so we all can attend the induction program for the Class of 1966 at 10:45 a.m. in the High School Auditorium. A catered lunch will be served at 12:00 noon in the food court.

In order for the handicapped to be served first, you are asked to please adjourn to the food court to sit at your respective class table(s) until your class is called to line up for lunch.

The Class of 1967 will be greeters Friday evening and Saturday morning; Class of 1965 is responsible for Friday evening's snack, drinks and Saturday morning coffee, juice and light breakfast; Class of 1964 is responsible for decorations.

Once again this year, we will be having a Split the Pot Benefit Drawing. Tickets will be $1.00 each or six for $5.00. The drawing will be at 1:00 p.m. Saturday. You must be present to win!

  • Only approximately 22% of our members paid their dues last year. We cannot successfully operate at this participation level. PLEASE PAY YOUR DUE (even if you can' t come.)
  • As you may know, we now have title to the Lillian Peek Cottage (Old Home Economics Building) and the Amphitheater. What you may not know is that we are renovating the cottage to preserve our heritage, offer a public venue for events and provide a permanent home for the 50 Year Club. The total project is at an estimated cost of close to $250,000. The good news is we have already raised and expended close to $135,000 to further this project. But we need your help to finish raising the balance to complete the job in a manner we can all be proud of. As a model for your action, the Class of 1960 raised and donated $11,999 to complete the foyer. Please come see our progress and please help us with a donation.
  • Our 3rd Annual Mountaineer Classic Golf Tournament is being held at the Holiday Hills Country Club on Friday, June 4, 2016. Please put together two or three teams (individually or from your class) for a 4-person scramble and help us with this major fund raiser! 
  • We are a 501c3 charitable organization and all donations are tax deductible.   

We look forward to seeing each and every one of you!

Hank Gayler, President

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Executive Board Meeting and PRC Meeting Scheduled

MWHS 50 Year Club
Executive Meeting

10:00 A.M.
Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2015

PRC Meeting following Executive Meeting

Lillian Peek
Home Economics Cottage
215 N.W. 5th Ave.
Mineral Wells, Texas

First Meeting of our New Fiscal Year

Please Try to Attend
Hank Gayler
Class of 1957

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Thank You to All America's Veterans

Veterans Day History

World War I – known at the time as “The Great War” - officially ended when the Treaty of Versailles was signed on June 28, 1919, in the Palace of Versailles outside the town of Versailles, France. However, fighting ceased seven months earlier when an armistice, or temporary cessation of hostilities, between the Allied nations and Germany went into effect on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. For that reason, November 11, 1918, is generally regarded as the end of “the war to end all wars.”
Soldiers of the 353rd Infantry near a church at Stenay, Meuse in France, wait for the end of hostilities. This photo was taken at 10:58 a.m., on November 11, 1918, two minutes before the armistice ending World War I went into effect.

In November 1919, President Wilson proclaimed November 11 as the first commemoration of Armistice Day with the following words: "To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations…"

The original concept for the celebration was for a day observed with parades and public meetings and a brief suspension of business beginning at 11:00 a.m.
The United States Congress officially recognized the end of World War I when it passed a concurrent resolution on June 4, 1926, with these words:
Whereas the 11th of November 1918, marked the cessation of the most destructive, sanguinary, and far reaching war in human annals and the resumption by the people of the United States of peaceful relations with other nations, which we hope may never again be severed, and
Whereas it is fitting that the recurring anniversary of this date should be commemorated with thanksgiving and prayer and exercises designed to perpetuate peace through good will and mutual understanding between nations; and
Whereas the legislatures of twenty-seven of our States have already declared November 11 to be a legal holiday: Therefore be it Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives concurring), that the President of the United States is requested to issue a proclamation calling upon the officials to display the flag of the United States on all Government buildings on November 11 and inviting the people of the United States to observe the day in schools and churches, or other suitable places, with appropriate ceremonies of friendly relations with all other peoples.
An Act (52 Stat. 351; 5 U. S. Code, Sec. 87a) approved May 13, 1938, made the 11th of November in each year a legal holiday—a day to be dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be thereafter celebrated and known as "Armistice Day." Armistice Day was primarily a day set aside to honor veterans of World War I, but in 1954, after World War II had required the greatest mobilization of soldiers, sailors, Marines and airmen in the Nation’s history; after American forces had fought aggression in Korea, the 83rd Congress, at the urging of the veterans service organizations, amended the Act of 1938 by striking out the word "Armistice" and inserting in its place the word "Veterans." With the approval of this legislation (Public Law 380) on June 1, 1954, November 11th became a day to honor American veterans of all wars.
Veterans Day continues to be observed on November 11, regardless of what day of the week on which it falls. After a brief period of changing the time of observance for four national holidays under the Uniform Holiday Bill in 1968, the restoration of the observance of Veterans Day to November 11 not only preserves the historical significance of the date, but helps focus attention on the important purpose of Veterans Day: A celebration to honor all America's veterans for their patriotism, love of country, and willingness to serve and sacrifice for the common good.

Office of Public and Intergovernmental Affairs: History of Veterans Day


Tuesday, June 30, 2015

MWHS 50 Year Club Parlor of Lillian Peek Cottage

About $17,000 needed to complete Parlor!

Beth Ramsey Visentine
Class of 1960


The new chandeliers and wall sconces in the Lillian Peek Cottage were beautifully accessorized with drapes just before the 2015 Reunion. Just in time for visitors to admire the room and visualize the plans for the Parlor.

Beth Ramsey Visentine created the window treatment. The drapery fabric, shown in the third picture, and fabric for the sheers was provided by John and Jo Murphy. John Murphy and David Visentine installed the rod and draperies.

There is still about $17,000.00 needed to complete the Parlor. If you can help:
Restoration donations for Lillian Peek Cottage Home Economics Building Benefit by the MWHS 50 Year Club can be sent to:
MWHS 50 Year Club
215 NW 5th Ave

Mineral WellsTexas 76067

About $17,000 needed to complete Parlor!

Lillian Peek Home Economics Cottage Renovation; Digital Format used; originals owned and released for use by Murphy, John and Jo; accessed Judith Richards Shubert 2015.
Copyright 2015, Judith Richards Shubert