Miss Ruby Dittemore - Blackwell, Oklahoma


Retired city school teacher rites slated

Blackwell, OK Newspaper December - January 1974


Miss Ruby Dittemore, 80 retired Blackwell high school teacher, died at 5 p.m. Monday in Blackwell General Hospital after a lengthy illness.

The funeral for the Kay County native and longtime educator has been set for 10 a.m. Thursday in Roberts and Son chapel.  Rev. Lew Davis, pastor of the First Christian church, where Miss Dittemore was a member will officiate.  Burial will be in New Home Cemetery at Eddy.

Miss Dittemore retired in the late 1950's after teaching English and Spanish at Blackwell high school for 33 years.  Most of her life was spent training young minds and her interest in education never waned.

At the time of her retirement, she recalled her early days after being born April 6, 1894, on the claim her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Dittemore, staked 

12 miles southwest of Blackwell at the opening of the Cherokee Outlet.  Her birthplace was a half dugout sod house.

She attended school at Pleasant View, where Homer Chambers, author of "The Enduring Rock," was her first teacher.

Her parents left Oklahoma in 1904 moving to High River, Alberta, Canada.  They returned six years later to Blackwell.  As an eight grader she was a spelling champion. 

Miss Dittemore entered the old Ward school, later to be the site of the Lovett Junior high and graduated with the first normal training at BHS in 1916 as salutatorian with a two-year teaching certificate.  She then taught in Kay County rural schools for seven years and two in Blackwell grade schools under Superintendent "Daddy" Lovett before coming to the local high school.

During World War I (1917-1918), she recalled one of her most active years as a teacher for employees' children at the government Indian school at Chilocco.  The unusually cold winter left the Chilocco lake frozen for weeks giving the students and their young instructor a chance to ice skate before and after school and at recess.

Adventurous in spirit, she joined her father and brother (note: Percy Lee Dittemore) the next summer for a trip to Colorado to look for a homestead.  They traded their car and tent for a covered wagon and horses at Lamar.  The prospect of wintering in a high altitude and colder climate later changed their minds and they sold all their equipment returning to Blackwell by train.  A few days later, Miss Dittemore had an offer to teach at Excelsior school which she accepted.

As a high school teacher, she worked with Girl Reserves (later Y-Teens) since 1927 and held offices in the Oklahoma District of YWCA.  She attended a YWCA national convention in Chicago.  One of the first steps of her retirement was to attend the western tour of Oklahoma Education association delegates to the NEA convention in Los Angeles.

She was a member of the Oklahoma Retired Teachers association and the National RTA.  Her church membership was in the First Christian church and she belonged to the Christian Women's Fellowship.  Miss Dittemore was a longtime member of the Blackwell Business and Professional Women's club serving as president in 1953.

She is survived by two sisters, Mrs. Ivan (Ada) Warner and Mrs. Bert (Edna) Gibson, both of Blackwell and one brother, P. L. Dittemore, Ada.


 Ruby Matilda Dittemore, daughter of Joseph Ephriam Dittemore and Martha Jane Dawe, was born April 6, 1894 in Indian Territory near Eddy, Kay County, Oklahoma.  She died on December 30, 1974 in Blackwell, Kay County Oklahoma at the age of  80 years, 8 months, 24 days.  She was buried on January 2, 1975 in the New Home Cemetery in Eddy, Oklahoma about 2 miles from the homestead that she was born on.

This page is part of Renee's Family Genealogy

This page was created on April 25, 2002