Montgomery County Elk City, Kansas

 Elk City Quarterly News


    1st Quarter 2013
    January, February, March 2013

    A quick note, this web page is sponsored by Elk City PRIDE in connection with Kansas State University PRIDE Program and through the Blueskyways Library System. PRIDE and the people of Elk City make up the content of this website.

Check It Out


PRIDE appreciated the monetary donations through the Verna Meise Memorial. Verna was an original member of PRIDE and she was a wonderful supporter through the years.

PRIDE agreed to join with the SEK-CAP seniors helping put together an Elk City community auction on May 4 with proceeds going to the upkeep and repair of the Community Building.

PRIDE also appreciates all the donations. The donations go towards the newsletter, the recycle project, community flower beds and trades day.

PRIDE is still sponsoring the recycling project the first Saturday of each month. We are still getting a lot of recycling material, they collect cardboard, newspapers, junk mail, magazines, tin cans, #1,#2 and #5 plastics. There must be an awful lot of this stuff polluting the landfills. We fill barrel full after barrel full of these things with 25 to 30 people who come the first of the month. They also collect pop and beer aluminum cans but we give them to the fire department as one of their money making projects.

PRIDE Awards Banquet and Soup Supper

The Annual PRIDE Awards Banquet and Soup Supper was held in March at the Community Building with over 60 in attendance. After the prayer given by Rev. Terry Marta, yummy soups and the fellowship was enjoyed by all Elk Citians attending! The PRIDE award this year went to the farmers of the area. Although we all know the wives are what make the farm run! 13 farmers who farm large acres were honored.

Today, the average U.S. farmer feeds 155 people. In 1960, a farmer fed just 26 people. Today’s farmer grows twice as much food as his parents did – using less land, energy, water & emissions. In 2008, the state of Kansas was the largest wheat producer in the United States .Kansas is number one in flour milling in the United States. Kansas produces enough wheat each year to bake 36 billion loaves of bread and enough to feed everyone in the world, An acre of Kansas wheat produces enough bread to feed nearly 9,000 people for one day. Farmers in more than 30 U.S. states grow soybeans, making soybeans the country’s second-largest crop. Soy ink is used to print textbooks and newspapers. The U.S. produces about 40 percent of the world's corn – growing five times as much corn as they did in the 1930s —on 20 percent less land. Farmers are appreciated!

Keli-Mart Closes

As most of you know the Keli Mart closed for business on Saturday, January 12. I would like to personally thank all of you for your patronage over the years. Michele

First off, I think there are a few urban legends that need to be snuffed:
1. No, that's not a sold sign above the realtors sign, it says commercial property.
2. No, some big wig from Independence didn't buy the store nor did I trade one property for another.
3. No, I'm not selling the store off piece by piece so don't ask... As in it's a package deal, all or nothing, as in... No, the store hasn't been sold yet, it's still for sale..
4. No, I didn't sell the store to a foreign entity that is going to control the dog population in Elk City also. That's because the store is still for Sale... It hasn't been sold yet.

I do hope I have answered the rumor mills questions. Had someone just come and asked me personally I could have put the rumors to rest long ago.
Soooooooo, moving on....
The last week was actually a fun filled week. I can't think of a dull moment that was had. The big talk of the store was who would win the bidding war for Ms. Shell (a plastic dummy). Who's Ms. Shell you ask, well she was our local loiterer. She hung out in the store for hours at a time, she was the talk of the store. It was Decided to auction her off. The bidding was set to begin Saturday morning at 8am, the store was packed. The bidding process was intense and since the bid sticks seconded as a back scratcher it was hard to keep track of who was bidding and who just had dry skin .

Update on Elk City Model T Restoration Fire Truck

Eric and Jimmy have started work on their project with restoring the Model T. They were able to start tearing into the motor and transmission. They have discovered this project is going to take a lot more work and expense then they originally thought, but they are looking forward to the end result, preserving a part of Elk City Heritage.

Eric and Jimmy are still looking for any old pictures of the model T from the earlier years, please let them know if you have any. Melinda is working on a scrapbook, she would like to include them along with any documentation and tidbits. Melinda will post pictures of the guys progress on the Model T.

We would like to thank those who donated to the fund as well as knowledge from his past experience working on Model T's. Thank you to everyone that donates towards this Restoration project. All donations no matter the size are greatly appreciated. Please make donations payable to the Model T Fund PO Box 176. Elk City, KS 67344.

Church News

The United Methodist Church Women discussed the Cookie Ministry Schedule, the Prayer Chain, and the Elk City Trades Day. It was decided that the UMW will participate in the Trades Day activities by providing a Concession Stand in the Community Building and donating the proceeds to the Community Building account for repair and upkeep of the building.

A Living Last Supper Service hosted by the Methodist Church. was held during the Easter Week. It is a re-enactment of the Last Supper that Jesus and His disciples celebrated together prior to his death.

A Good Friday Concert was held at the First Christian Church Easter Week featuring the Anderson's consisting of mom, dad and seven children. They all play a variety of musical instruments and sing.

Easter Sunrise Service was held Easter morning. The serivce began with a drama presentation entitled "New Life" followed by an Easter Breakfast at the Community Building.

Memories of Treva Payne Vaughn

as told to Betty Ure

After graduating from high school I taught school in the one room rural school south of Elk City. The first was Fly Creek Rural School in Chautauqua County, Kansas. The school was seven miles from our home by the roads. However, going through pastures I learned that I could cut the miles to about five, but there were five gates to open and close on the way. At first I rode our saddle horse. One of the school board members lived on the route I took to school. One time he made the comment, "Treva would come flyin' by our place on a dead run" At times I was able to stay at a home nearer the school. The salary was $50.00 a month and it was teaching all seven grades. Later Dad bought me a car to drive back and forth.

I met Hobert at a dance the first year after I began teaching at Circle Valley in Montgomery County. At that school, I walked three-fourths of a mile each way each day. After Hobert and I were married on March 26, 1930, I continued to teach Circle Valley until that school was consolidated with Elk City. The Elk City district wanted me to teach in town. I didn't want to at first, but after the war I did teach a couple of years in Elk City. Altogether I taught school over 30 years.

My parents were James Austin Payne and Frances Virginia "Vergie" Boatman Payne. Dad's parents, Adonijah Ross Payne and Anna Elliott Smith Payne both were born in Georgia, homesteaded near Hale, Kansas in Chautauqua County in 1870. My brothers and sisters were Jeanette, Byrl, Floyd, Ava, James and Max. I was born on January 19, 1912 and was in between Byrl and Floyd in ages.

All of us walked to Hilldale School warmly dressed and wore asafetida tied around our necks in a small sack to prevent disease. Skunk grease was used to doctor colds. Snowdrifts were broken in the wintertime and we walked three-fourth of a mile, morning and evening, or else were taken in a wagon pulled by a team of horses. When a new school house was built the bricks were furnished by Dad from the farm where a compressor had previously been located. Supper was always ready when we got home from school. After changing from school clothes to chore clothes, we all helped with milking cows and feeding calves and pigs, and chickens. Cream and eggs were sold and horses used for farming and herding. Water was carried up the hill for all family uses. Wash water was heated outdoors the washing was done on a washboard and hung on a clothes line to dry. Every piece was ironed with sad irons heated on the wood stove.

Dr. Crandall of Peru was the family doctor. He came in a horse-drawn buggy and, if needed, would stay day and night. He always gave the children medicine (candy-coated sugar pills).

My parents first car was a "Bristo Touring".

When thunderstorms were evident, Mother always woke us up and took us downstairs to sit on a featherbed, as lightning "wouldn't strike feathers".

We attended Sunday School at the school house where Dad was one of the Sunday School teachers. Neighbors took turns inviting or visiting other families for Sunday dinner. Everyone had time to visit and help their neighbors. Literary, box suppers, Christmas programs, last of school dinners, and other programs were the social life of the community.

My brother James died as a baby. Mother died in July 1930, and was buried at the Caney, Kansas Cemetery. Dad later married Cora Reed. Dad died on June 6, 1949 and is buried at Caney.

Around Town

The annual Whole Hog Sausage and Waffle Supper sponsored by Carson Lodge #132 was held February 2nd. A large crowd attended and the food and camaraderie was palatable. A few years ago, the supper was held with ice, sleet and snow outside. This year it could not have been nicer, a beautiful evening unlike most February in winter.

Chans Cox, grandson of former residents Joan and Jerry Cox, was selected to play in the US Army All-American Bowl. After the game two little boys asked Chans for his cleats so he removed them, signed them, and gave each a shoe.

The Community would like to express Their thanks to the Ministerial Alliance for the food basket, Santa Claus, candy & fruit. Your thoughtfulness is so appreciated.

Elk City had some snow before Easter weekend. The kids took advantage of Spring Break and Snow to build lots of snowmen.

The Gingham Aprons FCE held the lesson "Looking Fit and Fabulous at Any Age" in February. Some ideas presented: bringing out a woman's inner beauty and a list of a few healthy stress-busters: Take time for yourself; Let whimsy be your stylist; surround yourself with people who like you, love to laugh; get plenty of rest; and care for all aspects of your well-being. Life is a balance of mind, body and soul. March Lesson was "Everyday can be a Holiday"

Elk City Rural Fire Department

The Elk City Rural Fire Department hosted a training class on January 10th. The class was called Operation Life Saver, it was taught by Donnie Howesdell. He is an engineer with the Union Pacific Railroad. Independence Rural Fire Department and Longton Fire Department attended the class as well as Elk City FD. Havana was on their way to attend, but got called away to help with an accident. The firemen learned about safety precautions when working a scene around train tracks, as well as how to stop a train during a fire or accident. Twenty-eight firemen attended the class. We can't forget to mention the delicious dinner that was supplied for the firemen prior to the class. The firemen would like to thank all the wonderful wives for the wonderful dinner, and also thank you for your patience. We know that being a volunteer firefighter means many plans have and will be cancelled and long nights with no sleep due to being on calls. Last but not least, we have joined the Facebook world, like us, Louisburg TWP Rural Fire Dept Elk City Ks.

This is the total call volume that the Elk City Rural Volunteer Fire Department ran in the year of 2012. They ran a total of 74 calls within this past year.

25 Medical Calls
8 Vehicle Accidents with Injuries
24 Grass Fires
2 Search and Rescues
4 Structure Fires
3 Illegal Burns
4 Car Fires
2 Weather Watches
1 Citizens Assist
1 Gas Leak

This year was a rather calm one and we are thankful for that!

Elk City SEK Seniors, PRIDE Org. and Community are having an auction for the upkeep and repairs needed on the Community Building. Elk Citians are donating items to be auctioned off. We are hoping for generosity in their donations and hoping to have a lively auction. May 4th is also the annual Trades Day, garage sales, and food in the Community Building.

Tid Bits by Jane


Did everyone survive ringing in the New Year? I learned that Max was so ornery last year; his wife had to take him to the hospital for an attitude adjustment! Glad to hear he’s home and doing much better. Several have been under the weather with the flu or etc., this time of the year. College students went back to school mid-January for another semester. We’re hoping this is our last semester for a college student at PSU! ? What a week with Michele we had during the last week the Mart was open. Monday she broke the sad news, wasn’t much laughing that day! ? I realize by the time this paper comes out, my column is old news… but it’s a sad time in the ‘ol town when the local coffee shop/grill/convenience store has closed. The Keli Mart was no more after January 12th. Those that gathered for morning coffee or pop, enjoyed Mike’s hunting & fishing stories; solving the world’s political problems or keeping abreast of the comings and goings of the town. How are Steve & Steve. going to get their farming done if they can’t discuss how it should be the done? I have learned so much history of the area from Joe & Bob as well as laughing at their stories of all the shenanigans they pulled as young’ens and what they don’t remember Steve, Jim & Tony fill in the gaps. We can always count on Frank & Norma to keep us straight and Michele to spice up the mornings with good times and nonsense. And whatever problems weren’t solved by the morning crew, the afternoon crowd finished up. There are many more that enjoyed each other’s company for coffee, pop or a hamburger.

Is it gossip to discuss how your neighbor is doing after a trip to the hospital or wondering if your friend needs comforting after a death in the family or sharing good news like a birth or wedding in the area? No, and those that considered the Keli Mart a house of gossip didn’t go out there often enough to realize the camaraderie we all shared.

The Keli Mart was the major communication hub of Elk City. Every town needs it’s “watering hole”. I am sad to think I won’t see those guys every morning or be able to go in for a hamburger when I don’t feel like cooking. An abundance of food was served to area farmers, ranchers, oil/gas field workers, travelers and locals and they will all miss the cooks or the waitress of the Keli Mart. I’ve only known the Keli Mart since Rick & Thresa owned & renamed it. Those of you who have known it as Bradley’s have even more memories of its existence. So, to those of you who are tired of the tidbits… you’ll get a break, but hopefully not for long. Keli Mart & the people that came thru the doors were my inspiration and source of fun tidbits. Maybe soon the doors will open again and people can once again gather to share the news.

What I learned this month: You can’t keep the morning farmers table down…. We rallied together to “catch” up (after all it had been a week) with cinnamon rolls and good conversation once again!!! (at an undisclosed location). ? AND there is plenty of gossip going around even with the Keli Mart Closed! Imagine that!


The Kansas Birthday Info is a little late, since it was in January, but couldn’t resist being proud to be a Kansan! Out my window I see the birds at the bird feeder, the wind blowing the top off my feeder and then it rained! So the bird seed is wet, but the birds don’t care, they are still eating it & the rain is wonderful!

The rain has washed the dust off all the vegetation, the wheat got a good soaking, maybe not enough for the ponds, but every little bit helps. I’ve heard it called the miracle rain, as forecasters weren’t expecting us to receive 2” +. Certainly been a mild winter so far for us, even the snows this month was sure pretty and didn’t last long! Except for the ice!

The farmers table met again for coffee and rolls catching up on farming, politics and town news! If we meet more than once a week we’ll have to go on a diet! I hear there are a few games of dominos going on in Bob’s shed….

We spent 5 days in Cancun this month with our annual farmer trip sponsored by Chanel/Monsanto. Sunny beaches are always fun this time of the year. Did your team win the Super Bowl? It was an exciting game this year and the commercials were good too. “On the 8th day God made a farmer”. ?

What I learned this month: Always keep in contact with close friends. Don’t let them slip away due to lack of communication, even if you have to be the one to do the communicating. And a wise man told me…. ‘don’t lose your Christianity over a pair of lost glasses” and if you get a snoot full o alcohol you’ll get silly”. There you have it folks…..


We heard tales of coon and opossum attacks, beaver sightings and catfish biting. The buzzards are back, the daffodils and hyacinths have popped out all over! Do you ever notice some days when there is a little moisture in the air, it just smells like spring!! Except Winter Storm Virgil took the spring out of our sails! Allison reported a snow-nomi in KC !

Sad event took place on Mar. 8th with the 2 car wreck at the corner. Two ladies were in a little car delivering the Indy reporter when they pulled out in front of a truck loaded with rock. The two ladies were critically injured and the truck driver was bruised & banged up. We pray for speedy recovery for all involved.

The rain on the wheat has been great & the farmers are getting their planters ready for corn planting. As soon as it dries up, they’ll be in the fields. I’ve planted spinach, radish, lettuce & onions I’m trying to plant by the moon phase, it’s hard to wait when the ground is dry & weather is warm when the sign is right. It got kind of cold after I planted and then a heavy snow. I hope they survive.

The snow storm made for a small crowd at the Mason Breakfast this month. It was a record crowd this time last year! What a difference snow makes!

I’ve learned this month: It’s not fun to get old if you don’t have good health and staying healthy when you’re young is a much better alternative to all the doctor visits later on, but alas, our bodies do wear out with age and as someone once told me, if we didn’t live so long our bodies wouldn’t wear out


Jones, Graydon Lee, age 86 died January 21, 2013. Mr. Jones graduated from Elk City High School in 1944. Burial in Oak Hill Cemetery.
Loether, Ruby Opal, age 81 died January 18, 2013
Hogan, Wesley Andrew Hogan Jr., age 50 died February 14, 2013. Burial in Oakk Hill Cemetery Elk City, Ks. Mr. Hogan graduated from Elk City High School.
Corbin, Chester Vern age 85 died January 24, 2013
Hoyt, Dean G. age 81 passed away January 26, 2013.
Schwatken, Norman L. age 74 passed away March 15, he was born in Elk City, graduated from high school in Elk City

The Good Old Days

taken from South East Kansas Tribune Newspaper dated October 14, 1903
Note: looks like mud slinging is nothing new

Elk City Post office Fight is On

Editor Wortman, of the Enterprise and postmaster at Elk City, is recovering his health and has the following to say under the heading of "A Falsehood:"

Two weeks ago Mr. R. T. Musson and myself held a conversation in which he informed me that he was an avowed candidate for the postoffice. I answered that it was his privilege to ask for it, but stipulated that there should be no mud slinging, falsehood or underground work. He agreed to this, but in a few days several indignant citizens dropped into our office and claimed that they had been induced to sign his petition by the false statement that I had resigned or intended resigning.

We have no intention of resigning. The office very little more than paid expenses when we took it four and a half years ago. We built a new office, secured three rural routes and secured its advancement to the Presidential class, and the man who gets it from us during the coming term will have to do it without our voluntary resignation.

Taken from the South East Kansas Tribune dated October 2, 1903

H. H. Woodring of Elk City couldn't resist the opportunity to come down and meet with the Old Settlers. He was one of them and has been prominent in the grain business and democratic politics for a quarter century.

Star Kansan dated August 21, 1891

Mr. Thomas Mitchell, one of the oldest and most highly respected residents of Montgomery county, died at his home three miles north of Elk City, on Tuesday evening, August 18th, from dropsy. He was 81 years of age having been born in Washington County, PA in 1810. He came to Kansas in 1873 and lived in this county ever since. The funeral took place from the family residence, on Wednesday, Rev. A. E. Lewis of the Baptist church officiating. The remains being interred in Oak Hill cemetery at Elk City.

S. E. Kansas Tribune dated April 20, 1904

Monday evening attorney S H. Piper received a telegram from Elk City, stating that Mrs. Ellen Woodring, an aunt of Mrs. Piper's had burned to death. She was one of the pioneers, the widow of John Woodring, was aged 68 years, and favorably known among the elderly people. While burning trash in the door yard that afternoon her dress caught fire and before assistance could get to her she had burned so that she died from the effects.

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April 10, 2013 / Elk City PRIDE, Elk City, Kansas /

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