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


Saturday, June 16, 2007

Progress Notes

 Photo 01 -  John Adcock
Photo 01 - John Adcock
Another new download on our website by Peggy Hake is about the Adcock/Stillwell House of Tuscumbia. You can read it by clicking on the "Cultural" heading at the top of the website page and then clicking on "landmarks". I was sad several years ago that the old house had to be torn down to offer more room for the school addition, although as a graduate of Tuscumbia schools I certainly am in favor of improving the facilities available for our students. My Aunt Marie (Bear) Stillwell was married to Robert Stillwell, the son of Walter Stillwell, who was a well known attorney in Tuscumbia and owner of the house originally built by John Adcock (see photo 1), so I was very familiar with it. W. S. Stillwell's wife at the time I went to school (his first wife had passed away) was the former Sue Wells, daughter of J.R. Wells, owner of the J.R. Wells steamboat who also was a partner in the Anchor Milling Company. But my interest in the original builder of the house, John Adcock, was stimulated when I began dating my wife, Judy, forty years ago, and discovered that the house in which she lived on the old Tuscumbia/Bagnell road(see photo 2) was identical to the Stillwell house in town and had been built by the same man, John Adcock. Judy's parents, Holmes and Elva Steen, had purchased the Adcock "White Haven Farm" farm and house in the Flatwoods area between Tuscumbia and Eldon many years before in the early 1940's. When John Adcock built the house (see old photo 3 of house) , he duplicated almost every aspect of the town house, even including the engraved glass windows of the doors which remain to this day in the old house (see photo 4). John Wright of Tuscumbia, who was a well known landscape painter, was the engraver. Since it was built in 1909 it soon will be one hundred years old. Although the Adcocks didn't live in it nearly as long as the Steens have (and still do), they left many memories as recorded in Hilary Adcock Dunnaway's book, "Peace Beyond the Spring" in which she tells in great detail her experiences as a young girl living there. The book is a fascinating insight into the way lives were lived around the turn of the last century. Especially interesting was the way in which Hilary described "butchering day" in which the hogs were killed and butchered by the family and hired workers. John Adcock, who was a steamboat captain of the J.R. Wells (see photo 5), usually was on the river many miles away from Tuscumbia, but he kept very close control of the activities of the farm sending frequent letters home directing his wife on how to manage almost every detail of work to be done and preparations made for the change of seasons. The book "Peace Beyond the Spring" by Hilary Adcock Dunnaway can be found in our library at the Miller County Museum. As an interesting aside, John Adcock Jr. John's son, was a restaurant owner in Eldon and later Jefferson City where he established the "Adcock's Café", which was known for many years as being one of the better and more popular restaurants of the city.

 Adcock House 1909 in Flatwoods
Photo 03 - Adcock House 1909 in Flatwoods
 
 Adcock House 2007 in Flatwoods


Photo 02 - Adcock House 2007 in Flatwoods

 Photo 04 - Door Panel
Photo 04 - Door Panel

 Photo 06 - Steamer J.R. Wells
Photo 06 - Steamer J.R. Wells

Now we turn our attention to another recent addition to our website which is the story by Peggy Hake about the "Boyd Homestead". This interesting narrative relates Peggy's memories of the Boyd family and their old log cabin which existed for years in the Brushy Creek valley of the Big Tavern creek area of Osage Township. You can find the story by going to "Cultural Resources at the top of the webpage and then clicking on "landmarks." Interestingly, this historical piece by Peggy relates to the narrative I just finished above about the Adcock/Steen house. You see, Elva (Boyd) Steen (see photo 6), who is my mother-in-law and who now lives in the old Adcock home in the Flatwoods area, is a great granddaughter of Greenville Boyd, who is featured prominently in the story of Peggy's about the Boyd Homestead (I just love these segues!). In the photo of Elva, you will see she is working on making a quilt in the drawing room of the old Adcock home where she lives. Elva has made hundreds of quilts in her lifetime. One quilt which she donated to the "Relay for Life" auction at the Ninth Street Christian Church in Eldon was sold just a few days ago for three hundred fifty dollars (see photo 7). Another of her quilts is on display at our museum in Tuscumbia and is being sold at raffle as part of our fundraising drive (see photo 8). Drop by the museum soon and see it; it is a huge quilt with maple leaf design in autumn colors.

 Photo 06 - Elva (Boyd) Steen
Photo 06 - Elva (Boyd) Steen
 
 Photo 07 - Elva's Quilt
Photo 07 - Elva's Quilt

 Photo 08 - Raffle Quilt
Photo 08 - Raffle Quilt

And we segue again. Relay For Life events are being held at various places in Miller County this month with differing types of programs. I attended two this last week, one at Ninth Street Christian Church in Eldon and the other at the Mount Zion Christian Church south of Tuscumbia. Both locations sponsored very well organized programs which were successful in raising money for the purpose of providing cancer research and treatment. The one at Eldon, mentioned in the preceding paragraph, raised almost two thousand dollars with a silent as well as vocal auction. Entertainment was provided by the ladies contemporary Christian music quintet named OneVoice of Eldon (see photo 9) The other Relay for Life event at Mount Zion Christian church featured the talented gospel singing artist Frank Schlesinger (see photo 10), who is becoming well known locally as quite a talent. Frankie, as I knew him when he was in school at Tuscumbia several years behind me, is a very entertaining host who will have you laughing several times before he leaves the stage.

 Photo 09 - OneVoice Singers
Photo 09 - OneVoice Singers
 
 Photo 10 - Frank Schlesinger
Photo 10 - Frank Schlesinger

Progress in cure of cancer has occurred dramatically over the last half century, especially in the last ten to twenty years. In the 1940's, only one patient in four survived on the average. By the 1960's that figure was up to one in three and now has reached a 50% survival rate. It is interesting to compare cancer treatments of long ago with those of today. For example, in my family's copy of Dr. Chase's Recipes, 1906 edition (see photo 11 and 11a), which gives many hundreds of medical cures for humans as well as farm animals one typical example of a remedy prescribed in those days is what was recommended for breast cancer (p. 92):

 Photo 11 - Dr. Chase's Recipes
Photo 11 - Dr. Chase's Recipes
 
 Photo 11a - Dr. Chase's Recipes
Photo 11a - Dr. Chase's Recipes

"Take a white oak root and bore out the heart and burn the chips to get the ashes, 1/4 oz.; lunar caustic, 1/4 oz.; calomel, 1/4 oz.; salts of nitre 1/4 oz.; the body of a thousand legged worm, dried and pulverized, all to be made fine and mixed with 1/4lb. of lard. Spread this rather thin upon soft leather and apply to the Cancer, changing twice a day for three days; then apply a poultice of soaked figs until it comes out, fibers and all; heal with a plaster made by boiling red beech leaves in water, straining and boiling thick, then mix with beeswax and mutton tallow to form a salve of proper consistency."

Sometimes we look back to the "good old days" with nostalgia but aren't you glad they've dropped the "thousand legged worm" from the Pharmacopeias these days?

We are very appreciative of the willingness of our volunteers to serve as host to those who visit us at the museum. We are open 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Wednesday June 13 we were honored to have the women's group from Tebbets, Missouri visit us. About twenty five women in all came to browse through the museum as well as attend an enactment of old time cabin life as lived many years ago in the Lupardus cabin which now is located on our grounds as performed by Sharon Holder(see photo 12). Our hostess for that day was Nadine Hachler of Eldon (see photo 13).

 Photo 12 - Sharon Holder
Photo 12 - Sharon Holder
 
 Photo 13 - Nadine Hachler, Eldon
Photo 13 - Nadine Hachler, Eldon


Progess is continuing in the construction of our new addition to the museum. We now are putting the siding and roof on the building (see photo 14). Financial support continues to be encouraging as we move along on the project. If you would like to help with your financial gift, please mail your donation to:
Miller County Museum Building Fund
P.O. Box 57
Tuscumbia, Mo. 65082

 Photo 14 - MCMHS New Addition
Photo 14 - MCMHS New Addition

That's all for now. See you at the Ice Cream Social Saturday, June 16 at the museum.




Joe Pryor



President's Message of 06-16-2007
President's Message of 06-09-2007
President's Message of 06-06-2007
President's Message of 05-28-2007
President's Message of 05-25-2007
President's Message of 05-19-2007
President's Message of 05-16-2007
President's Message of 05-05-2007
President's Message of 04-29-2007
President's Message of 04-22-2007
Here We "GROW"


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