What I Remember Of My Childhood

By Thelma May Bowe Dittemore

Transcribed by: Irene Dittemore

Copyright 2001 Renee Smelley




Thelma May Bowe was born on April 25, 1908 in Portage, Wood County, Ohio. She is the daughter of Frank Bowe or Bovie and Eudora Adelia Wixson. Thelma died on October 20, 1989 in Ada, Pontotoc County, Oklahoma. Thelma married Percy Lee Dittemore on July 7, 1923 in Medford, Grant County, Oklahoma. Percy was the son of Joseph Ephriam Dittemore and Martha Jane Dawe. Percy was born on January 8, 1901 in Indian Territory, Eddy, Kay County, Oklahoma. He died on November 29, 1996 in Ada, Pontotoc County, Oklahoma. Thelma and Percy are buried in Rosedale Cemetery in Ada, Oklahoma and this is her story.



What I Remember Of My Childhood



Childhood Memories

Daddy (Frank Bowe) worked for the Ohio Oil Co. We lived two miles North and West of Rudolph and 3 miles from Portage where we got our mail by horse and buggy first. We had a dirt road until after people started driving cars. The roads were graded up with deep ditches on both sides.

We lived in a white house trimmed in green. We had a horse named Babe which we raised from a colt. The mother, Doll, died from colic in the night. We had a cow and raised several calves. The cow was a big red.

Daddy brought home a little white and brown rat terrier. We called Fritzy. He was a lot of fun until he got older. He went to work with daddy who was a pumper for the Ohio Oil Co. They would bring home a rabbit in the Winter. We always froze them and mama would make pot pies.

We went to Sunday School in a United Brethren church a mile North when it was nice. We were always in the children's day program, wearing white embroidered dresses mama made and black paent slippers.

We had a lot of fun in the summer time playing house in the barn, cow shed or maybe under a big oak tree in the pasture behind our place where a drainage ditch ran through. We would sometimes fish with a bent pin for crawdads. The country was tilled throughout and once we had a bad flood that backed up to our place. We staid a week with some neighbors, Instones. They had four boys. The youngest was my age, Bernard. I guess he was my first boy friend. There was another boy who went tou our Sunday School and church, Mason. We all went to different schools as the four corners divided the district. We walked two miles to Rudolph when we couldn't cut across lots. I almost fell in the creek when it was at flood stage from a foot bridge. Another time I was almost struck by lightning walking along a fence in a Spring storm.

We had scarlet fever when I was seven. We were out of school through Christmas. Daddy got us our first Christmas tree. I thought it ws the most beautiful thing. I had a little red sled. Had a lot of fun sliding down the slope in the pasture. In the Spring there would be a million spring beauties under the oak tree.

Uncle Bill (Wixson) and Uncle Deloy (Wixson) worked in Yellowstone Park one year. Uncle Bill worked for the Sante Fe R. R. as a telegraph lineman. He married Lorraine (Carter) and they adopted a boy, Bob. They finally settled in San Angelo (Texas). Uncle Deloy went to St. Augustine, Florida. They had a girl and boy. (The Girl) Thelma died in a fire.

Mama (Dora Wixson) and daddy (Frank Bowe) always had a nice garden and canned and dired things. We would go to the fair in Bowling Green, OH in the fall and Mama always bought peaches to can. She always canned tomatoes and we would help slip the skins off for her. When we went to the fair we always took our dinner and ate with relatives. Before World War I we bought a over land car. We had always drove to town with Babe (the horse and buggy) and to my grandmother Krotzer,s (Lucy Ann Keller Krotzer Bovie/Bowe)18 miles away. Hazel and I had a little seat daddy fixed down in the front.

Grandmother Krotzer had a big farm with a beautiful 2 storied white house trimmed in green shutters. Tall pine trees lined the drive down to the road. A street car went pretty close by their side yard and a rail road tract a little farther over. We children would get so excited when one would pass. They always waved to us and threw the papers on Sunday.

Sometimes we walked two miles East and took a street car to Bowling Green, OH. My grandfather Wixson (George William Wixson) lived there. They sold out and went to Tennessee during the first world war to be near my uncle Deloy who was in the Army. My uncle Will was in the Navy. They both came through O. K. Uncle Deloy was my favorite. He always liked us girls and always brought us something. He worked with my grandfather as a carpenter.

There were four of us girls. We had a little brother just younger than me named William Russell (Bowe) born December 18, 1910. Hazel (Bowe) was three years younger than me. She was never very well. We had our tonsils out when quite young. Helen (Bowe) was 5 years younger. I was eight when Esther (Bowe) was born. We used to have a lot of fund with her. Took her every where we went. She could hang on to the swing when she was just a baby.

Daddy decided to go to Texas with a neighbor, Barney Wismer, to find work in the oil fields in Ocotber 1920. He finally got into rig building for Ed Tippit. We came out a year later and settled in Blackwell, OK. Daddy worked all around mostly at Three Sands South of Tonkawa and in Kansas. Made from $12 to $18 a day when the weather was right.


How I Met Percy

I started to school in Jr. High and went to the United Brethren Church. My best friends were Vera Rawlings and Florence Coleman Epperly. I became a Christian durig a big tabernacle meeting. The minister, a man by the name of Rayborn, held the meeting on South Main in the Spring of 1922. They started a Twilight ball league. Joe Morton, George Epperly, who got Percy Dittemore to play. Mrs. Morton introduced us at Sunday School. Eva Gills went with him a while. We had a neighbor, Lillian, I liked very much. We ran around together until they moved.

I started to go with Percy in the Fall. I was a freshman. He was operated on for a ruptured appendix in January. He gave me a ring in June. We went to Medford, OK July 7, 1923, and got married. We kept it secret until August. We got an apartment on North A St. He went to work at a grocery store and worked all Winter. He bought a delivery truck. When the grocery went broke, he went back to work at the glass plant.


Our Family

Dortha was born July 27, 1924. The plant closed down in the Winter. He went to work at a gasoline plant. Beatrice was born (private). My mother had a baby boy (Franklin Bowe) in December 1927 before Barbara was born (private). Irene was born (private) just before the market crash in 1929. We had just bought a Maytag washer. We had moved in a house of Ruby's (Percy's sister) on South Main




The Depression Years

Percy went to California with Ira Fox and Jess Lockhart February 1931. The girls and I went out with Mrs. Fox in May. I was seven months pregnant and Leo was born (private) We stayed out there until February. We wrote for a job in Ada, OK where they had opened a plant. We had quite a trip home. We had bought a model A Ford. The children and I stayed in Blackwell with my folks and Percy's until he could send for us. We moved into a furnished house on E. 15th. They opened the plant at Blackwell, OK every Summer. We bought some furnigure. We had shipped our washer out to California and back. We moved back to Ada, OK in the Fall of 1939 before Kennith was born (619 W. 16). Mrs. Tichnor stayed with me. Mrs Ina Ray was with me when Kennith was born. The children had the measles when they opened the Blackwell plant again. Percy went ahead and got us a house. Mama and Daddy drove our car back (to Ada) and got us. We lived on W. Blackwell.

That summer (we) moved back in time for the children to start school. We lived on North Francis. That winter we traded our car for a Ford V 8 and bought a Philco radio console. I kept two college girls that winter. One was Larrie Linker. We got acquainted with her folks. They lived at Tupelo.

They opened the plant at Blackwell and we lived on north 5th. There was a bad drout that summer, 1935. Kennith and the children had whooping cough and Kennith had bronchial pneumonia. 1936, we lived one summer on E. Padon, then W. 9th in Ada, OK. We moved back to Ada, OK in the fall (E. 7th and Hope Street). We had to sell the car. We lived there two winters. Barbara and Kennith had Scarlet Fever. Then they had the Mumps. The folks came down to see us that summer. There was an oil boom here in the 40's. We lived on Broadway and 16th in 1939. I had surgery in May. Kennith started to school in the fall.

We moved back to Blackwell for 6 weeks in the summer of 1940, then back to Ada, OK where we lived on West Main St. Dortha had been going with a boy, E. C. Perkins. He gave her a ring. (End)


50th & 60th Wedding Anniversary Memories



Dittemores Wed 50 Years Sunday

Ada Evening News

Mr. And Mrs. P. L. Dittemore, 525 W. 8th, will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary with a reception in the fellowship hall of the First Christian Church, today.

Hosts for the occasion will be the couple's six children. They are Mrs. Dortha Perkins and Mrs. Beatrice Brown, both of Ada; Mrs. Barbara Stokers, Ft. Worth, Tex; Miss Irene Dittemore, Pittsburgh, PA; Leo Dittemore, Eunice, N. M., and Kenneth Dittemore, Houston, Tex.

Mr. Dittemore was born to pioneer parents who staked a claim during the opening of the Cherokee Strip in 1889 near what is Blackwell.

Mrs. Dittemore's parents came from Ohio in 1921. Her father was a rig builder and worked around the Blackwell area.

The Dittemores were married July 7, 1923. He worked for the Hazel Atlas Glasss Co. The couple came to Ada in 1932.

Mr. Dittemore continued working for Hazel Atlas Glass Co. until it was bought by Continental Can and then finally became Brockway. He retired in 1969 after 47 1/2 years.

The Dittemores belong to the First Christian Church.

Friends and relatives of the couple are invited to attend.




Reception Will Be Held Sunday

The Ada Evening News, Wed., July 6, 1983

Mr. and Mrs. Percy L. Dittemore, 525 W. 8th, will be honored with a reception at 2 p.m. Sunday to clebrate their 60th wedding anniversary.

It will be held in Fellowship Hall of the First Christian Church, where they are members. All friends and relatives are invited to attend.

Hosts will be their six children, Dortha Perkins and Beatrice Brown, both of Ada, Barbara Ballenger, Fort Worth, Texas, Irene Dittemore, Pittsburg, PA., Leo Dittemore, Eunice, New Mexico, and Kenneth Dittemore, Houston, Texas.

The Dittemores were married July 7, 1923, and have resided in Ada since 1932.

Mr. Dittemore retired in 1969 after 47 years with Hazel Atlas Glass Co., now Brockway.

They have 15 grand-children, and four great-grandchildren.



Copyright 2001 This copy of What I Remember of My Childhood by Thelma Dittemore may not be reproduced for profit without the written consent of Renee Smelley. All copies made must contain this copyright information.



This page is part of Renee's Family Genealogy

Read The Story of My Life by Dora (Wixson) Bowe

Read 6 Generations of Daughters by Renee Smelley


This page was created on May 8, 2000

Last update was on March 12, 2001