wedding photo taken about Dec 1908

The Oscar Showers family

In 1924 Oscar and Ellen Showers moved into Densmore, Kansas, so that their son, John, could attend high school. They also had a seven year old daughter, Mildred.

Oscar was the son of James Henry and Eliza Jane (Judd) Showers. He was born and raised in Lanark Township, north of Stockton, Kansas. Oscar married Ellen Charlotte Griffin from Logan, Kansas on December 30, 1908. Her parents were Samson and Kezia Isabella (Howes) Griffin.

Oscar and Ellen lived on a farm southeast of Densmore and their children had attended Whitfield country school [in Graham county] before moving to Densmore. Three to four years before moving to Densmore, Oscar had helped his brother, Tom, by taking his place working on the bridge gang southwest of Logan, Kansas, that were building a cement bridge with steel beams in it. It was Election Day and Tom wanted to go vote. While Oscar was working in Tom's place, a swinging 2000 pound steel bridge beam came around and while it was still in the air, it hit Oscar's foot. (Had it been on the ground it would have cut his foot off.) It crushed all the bones behind his toes. He waited to go the doctor, because he didn't know what doctor to go to, plus he didn't feel like they could afford it. Infection set in and he had to do something. He went to the doctor in Logan, and ended up in a hospital in Salina, Kansas. They took bones out of his shin and implanted the bones to replace the ones that were crushed. It never did do right and hurt him all the time. He was on crutches for eleven years. He eventually went to Waconda Springs and took hot mineral baths, then he came home walking. He never limped and walked fine the rest of his life.

When the Showers family moved to Densmore, Oscar was on crutches. After his injury his son, John, at the age of ten, had to work to help support the family.

While in Densmore, Oscar first worked at sewing and fixing harnesses, repairing shoes and he sold farm seed such as cane and corn. Later, Oscar ran a creamery, he bought eggs, chickens and turkeys. He even ran a route to buy poultry clear down to Nicodemus. When Mildred was older, her father had her help start a dry goods corner in party of the creamery.

The Showers family increased while they lived in Densmore, when their son, Kenneth, was born October 24, 1924.

After John graduated from high school, the family moved back to the farm. 

Later, when Mildred went to high school, she lived with the Woodgard [Woogerd] family. She enjoyed participating in school plays, basketball and was a cheerleader her junior and senior years. She graduated in 1935 and was salutatorian of her class. Her favorite teachers were Rachel Bales and Maxie Klagg, whom she corresponded with as long as they lived.

Mildred remembers when she lived in Densmore that Ralph Griffith ran the Densmore Garage, Mrs. Bartels ran the hotel, G.J. Archer ran the lumberyard and the Coal and Grain Store. Mullen's Store and the post office were together. Nora was post mistress and James ran the store. On west was a barber shop and then a cafe owned by Cal Mullen, brother of James. Also, Stepper's had a hardware store and beside it was Kitzke's store.

Later, Mildred married Wayne Thomas from Palco, Kansas. She lost her husband in December of 1977. As of 2004, she is still living on their farm.

Mildred is the only surviving member of her family. She lost her brother, John, in 1977 and her brother, Kenneth, in 2004.

2004 Mildred Thomas and Jeanette Haskett - jeanettehaskett at hotmail.com

Last updated 22 February 2005