The Allard-Wright's

Alletta Ann Brokaw and Arthur Elgena (Gene) Allard were married in 1897, in Roseville, Illinois. They came to Kansas in 1904 and lived on a farm in East Bolton township. In 1920 they moved to 702 South B. in Arkansas City where they spent the rest of their lives. Four of their children preceded them in death: Florence Josephine, Evelyn Loota, Ailetta Eigena, and Agnes Yingling Kahm. They are buried in Hope Cemetery as are Alletta who died in 1955 and Gene who died in 1957.

Other Allard children are David Clay of New Braunfels, Texas, retired oil refinery construction supervisor; Charles Arthur of San Antonio, Texas, retired Air Force officer, Mary Alice (Mrs. Ted) Raynolds of Tucson, Arizona; Elsie Louise who taught at Theaker, Guthrie, and Lincoln Schools before her death in 1968; and my mother, Celeste Genevieve (Sally).

My father was Stephen Spencer (Steve) Wright. Steve's parents, Albert Granfield (Al) and Pearl Blount were married in St. Joseph, Missouri in 1903. Al had served in the Spanish-American War in 1898-99, after which he was a traveling salesman for Wyeth Hardware. In 1921 the Wrights came to Arkansas City where he began business as Al G. Wright Hardware Company, which was later to become Wright-Burton Hardware at 220 South Summit Street. For many years Al was a director in the Western Hardware and Implement Dealers Association and was president in 1934. Al also served as president of both the Arkansas City Rotary and the Chamber of Commerce, and was a 32 degree Mason. Prominent in local and state Democratic circles, he was appointed by Governor Huxman to the office of Chairman of the Kansas Board of Social Welfare. Al died in 1938.

Pearl, an accomplished writer, was a columnist for the Arkansas City Tribune. She also wrote and published poems and short stories. Pearl and Al had two sons: Waymond Blount (Joe), who retired to Casselberry, Florida after a federal government career in Washington, D.C.; and Stephen Spencer (Steve).

After Steve and Sally were married in 1935 they lived at 901 North D in Arkansas City and had three children: Susanne, born in 1938; Stephen Allard, born in 1940; and Charles Spencer (Chuckie) born in 1942. Sieve served in the U. S. Navy from 1942 through 1944. It was during this time that a family double tragedy occurred. On August 1, 1944, Chuckie, aged 28 months, drowned in the A. C. Country Club pool. Less than an hour later as she was telephoning the sad news to her son Steve, who was stationed in California, Pearl suffered a fatal heart attack.

After his discharge, Steve returned to the family hardware business and purchased a home at 224 North Third Street where their family was raised. Steve was active in several local organizations, and served as President of the Arkansas City Junior Chamber of Commerce. Always an avid reader, he loved books and served many years on the Arkansas City Public Library Board. Both Steve and Sally enjoyed golf, and she was Arkansas City Women's Golf Champion in 1952, as well as three-time Arkansas City Country Club Women's Champion. Steve died in 1976; Sally died in 1989. They are buried in Riverview Cemetery.

Steve and Sally's son, Stephen A., graduated from Washburn University and became a career Air Force officer. He married Sharon Raynolds and they had three children: Julie Jill, Spencer David, and Celia Leann.

I graduated from Southwestern College, Winfield, and later received a Master's degree from Wichita State University. I married Tom Stark of Arkansas City in 1957 and we had one son, Trace Thomas.

I have been teaching English at Arkansas City High School since 1963. Trace, who married Libbe Green Dobson in 1988, received both his Bachelor's and Master's degrees from Pittsburg State University and is a teacher in Topeka.

Susanne Wright Stark Submitted by Susanne Wright Stark
Scanned out of the Cowley County Heritage book, pg 115.


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