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Joe Pryor - News Tribune Article Monday, June 04, 2007

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Progress Notes

The last week has been a productive one for our construction crew on the new museum addition. We now have walls and the roof has been started and will be completed by the end of the week (see photo). Although rain has been off and on, the work crew has managed its hours to continue the building process one way or another. A very interesting touch has been utilized for the main floor west wall where the original field stone of the original structure was exposed to the interior in three large picture frames which adds interest and retains the flavor of the old building.

 June 05, 2007
June 05, 2007

Donations are continuing to come in daily which is very encouraging to us. We will need to change the barometer sign along the highway soon to reflect the next increment level as we race toward our goal of one hundred fifty thousand dollars. We are receiving many donations which are not always large amounts but their number soon adds up to provide significant sums. So we don't hesitate to encourage the small gift; everyone can be a part of this project which is meant to represent all Miller Countians, their culture and their history.

The address to which donations should be sent is:

Miller County Museum Buildng Fund
Miller county Historical Society
P.O. Box 57
Tuscumbia, Mo.

I would like to point out some interesting new additions to our website in the last week. The Tuscumbia Centennial of 1937 was added to the "Events" page of the "Yesterdays" heading at the top left. The most interesting thing of many of that event was the thought that Charlie "Bird" Parker, the famous Kansas City jazz saxophonist very well could have been part of the band which is pictured in the Musser's Resort float (see photo). My mother was pictured in another float advertising local Tuscumbia businesses. She is the fourth from the left sporting a banner draped across her right shoulder advertising the general store her father, Madison Bear, owned in Tuscumbia (see photo).

 Musser's Resort float - 1937 Tuscumbia Centennial
Musser's Resort float - 1937 Tuscumbia Centennial

 1937 Tuscumbia Centennial
1937 Tuscumbia Centennial

Also new in the "Events" page is an article about the dedication of the new bridge over the Osage River in 1933. Many people are still around who remember that celebration. Once again, Squire John Ferguson of Iberia was master of ceremonies. My father and his brother owned the farm which was north of the bridge having bought it from Wiley Berry in 1951. Wiley was the owner of the farm, which originally was part of the old Goodrich estate, in the late 1920's when the state began negotiating for the land upon which to build the bridge and road leading up to it. Wiley, however, was not very receptive to the state taking his land, especially because so much was needed in order to build the road up several feet due to the frequent flooding of the Osage River. He fought the state in court but lost, eventually having to settle for less than what was originally offered. However, now that the state is going to build a new bridge (thank goodness!!) the extra land will be helpful to give enough room to build the entrance road to the new bridge which will be located just upstream of the present bridge. Hopefully, this will be accomplished soon because the present bridge surely appears as if it's on its last legs (see photo of bridge when new).

 Dedication of New Tuscumbia Bridge
Dedication of New Tuscumbia Bridge

Another of the several additions to the site this last week was the history of the Burris Hotel written by Peggy Hake. This article can be found under the heading "Cultural Resources" in the subsection titled "Landmarks". You will find in this article that the Burris Hotel of Eldon was the inspiration for the old Sixties TV show, "Petticoat Junction" written and produced by Paul Henning, originally from Kansas city, who also produced "Beverly Hillbillies" among other popular TV shows of that era. But did you know that Paul Henning, who at one time was really a very famous Hollywood personality, was buried in the Tuscumbia Cemetery in the Burris grave plot after his death in 2005? Read all about it in Peggy's story.

We are having an "ice cream social" at the museum Saturday, June 16, beginning at noon. Entertainment is planned as well. Come to Tuscumbia and see us as well as take a look at our new construction project for the museum addition.

"This year's annual Ice Cream Social at the Miller County Museum will have more for visitors than ice cream and country music. Local artists will be setting set-up their easels under the trees around the museum to paint and show their wares in a Heritage Art and Artist's Paint-in. Saturday, June 16th. Artists will begin at 10AM and continue through 4PM. Ice Cream, cake and cookies will be sold from noon until 3PM. The Kallenbach family built wagon over 100 years ago will be displayed. Joe Jeffries musicians will play inside. Any artisan wishing to participate may call the museum at 369-3500."

Joe Pryor

President's Message of 05-28-2007
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Here We "GROW"

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