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 Dallas Darrell Downs, Sr

Dallas Darrell Downs, Sr

Birth
New Lebanon, Cooper County, Missouri, USA
Death 29 Aug 1938 (aged 62)
Tryon, Lincoln County, Oklahoma, USA
Burial Tryon, Lincoln County, Oklahoma, USA
Memorial ID 6628396 · View Source
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Dallas was a carpenter by trade. He was married about 1895 to Philena WATERS. Dallas & Philena were my grandparents. Dallas and Philena homesteaded land in Woodward Co., OK about 1896. He purchased a combine by using his farm as collateral. For whatever reason, his venture failed and he lost both the farm and the combine.
They moved to Tryon, Lincoln Co., OK about 1904 and then, about 1906 or 1907, they moved to the Big Pasture area that was to become Grandfield, Tillman Co., OK.
Eschiti was one of the five townsites that had a federally approved charter in the Big Pasture. The other four were Randlett, Apheatone, Quanah, & Isadore. Only those townsites with a federal charter were given post offices.
An "unchartered town" in the Big Pasture had been named Kell City after Frank KELL, one of the owners of the Wichita Falls & Northwestern Railroad. The town had been built literally on the railroad's right of way.
The Interior Department refused to give Kell City a post office because it was in competition with Eschiti. Eschiti had a post office but no railroad.
In 1908, Baptist Minister A. J. TANT, decided to divided his farm into a new townsite of city lots and sell them off.
Rev. TANT offered to give a lot to anyone who would move a business or residence to his townsite. He did this in order to try to settle the feud that was brewing between the towns of Kell City and Eschiti.
Rev. TANT's new townsite was called Kell. Since almost all of the residents of both towns had moved to Kell, the town's city fathers decided that the new town would need a post office. They asked the U.S. Government for a post office but were refused because Kell also was not approved as a townsite by the federal government.
Since Eschiti was an approved townsite, it was decided that the easiest way to get a post office was to take the existing one from Eschiti.
Some men from Grandfield simply went to the Eschiti community late one evening and moved the small frame building to the new city. They worked so quickly and silently that the postal clerk sleeping inside the building did not realize that it had been moved the two miles until he woke up the next morning.
The post office remained in town for only one day because U.S. Deputy Marshalls arrived in town and began asking questions about the parties who had tampered with a federally owned building.
Those involved with the move worked swiftly and the post office was moved back to Eschiti that night! The new town was still without a post office!
The incident about the Eschiti post office is related on page 22 of the book titled, "Grandfield, The Hub of The Big Pasture", written by Robert Lee Wyatt, 3rd.
Although no names were mentioned in the book, Dallas Darrell DOWNS was one of those involved in the post office "move".
In late 1908, the new town again approached the U.S. government about a post office. This time they had the help of the Third Assistant Postmaster General of the United States, C. P. GRANDFIELD.
Their efforts prevailed and the town was renamed Grandfield in honor of the Postmaster General for his assistance.
All of the government chartered towns withered and died while Grandfield flourished. Of course, it didn't hurt that the WF & NW railroad built a depot in Grandfield.
Dallas was a carpenter and building contractor in Grandfield and helped build the first school house in Grandfield as well as several private homes in that area between 1908 and 1930.
He built his own home on the northwest corner of the street 4 or 5 blocks due north of the water tower. A man by the name of Grady FUQUA bought it years later.
Dallas' son, Fred, had a photo taken of himself on top of the water tower about 1917-18.
Dallas built the ROSENBOOM house two blocks north of Jim and Ruth GIBBON's home. It is on the northwest corner of the street also. He also built the house straight across the street from the ROSENBOOM home.
He taught two of his sons, Howard and Fred, carpentry. Howard went on to become a master carpenter and cabinet maker while Fred went into the oilfields as a driller and toolpusher.
Dallas' carpenter's tools, including a wooden mallet, his framing square, and several different types of hand planes were found in Fred's garage on March 10, 1997, as well as a four volume set of books on carpentry. The copyright date was 1923. A receipt made out to D. D. DOWNS was found inside one of the books.
He built homes in Grandfield, OK & the Nichols Hills area of Oklahoma City, OK. He laid the ceramic tile in the lobby of the old Palace Theater at 300 W. Grand Street in Oklahoma City.
Dallas' parents were William Henry DOWNS & Frances Evaline (Eva) STEELE.
Philena's parents were Charles S. WATERS & Martha E. METCALF (MIDKELF).



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  • Created by: Fred Downs
  • Added: 22 Jul 2002
  • Find A Grave Memorial 6628396
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Dallas Darrell Downs, Sr (9 Feb 1876–29 Aug 1938), Find A Grave Memorial no. 6628396, citing Tryon Cemetery, Tryon, Lincoln County, Oklahoma, USA ; Maintained by Fred Downs (contributor 46545149) .