Monday, December 9, 2013

Mom's house at Christmas

Mom just loved her little house. She decorated it herself every year. She had planned on spending her last days here but that didn't work out for her.

Christmas Card part 2

Christmas Card 2013


Saturday, December 7, 2013

Ricky Arthurs Kids

Jacklyn (sp?) born 20 July and will be 7 and Shawn born Aug 29 will be 6.
These are Gertie's grandkids. My Dad was also born on 20 July.

Friday, November 22, 2013

JFK and Jack Ruby

Uncle Berle loved the mystery surrounding the JFK assassination. He lived in Ft Worth for many years both before and after November 22, 1963. Oswald's Mom lived not far from him and one day while I was visiting in 1964 (maybe '65) he took me to her house and I talked to her through her door as she wouldn't open it. He was embarrassed by my behavior but I was just 20 on Nov 22, 1963 (which was the second anniversary of our marriage). On that visit we also went to Oswald's gravesite, Ruby's nightclub (Berle used to drink there), Dealey Plaza, and the other sites. Hubert Humphrey was in town and spoke at the Texas Hotel (or Hotel Texas as I'm not sure of the exact name). I had an 8mm camera and I took some footage of Hubert and of all of the cops. Berle didn't want me shooting scenes because this was the first time the prez or vice was in town since the assassination and everyone was really nervous. Snipers and cops were all over the area. The white people lined up in front of the hotel and the black across the street. When his limo pulled up in front of the hotel he got out on the right side (white people) but he went around the car to first shake hands with the blacks. This is all on my film which is now on DVD. I shook his hand and smiled at him although I was a big-time Goldwater man (still am). Our third son, Doug, has lived in the Ft Worth area for over 30 years and we have spent many a Thanksgiving and  anniversary with he and his family over the years. I would always go to Dealey on the 22nd. I've met a lot of people there to include James Lavelle the guy handcuffed to Oswald when he was shot. This is a picture of us in '93, we talked for a while and his autograph is on to the famous picture. 

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Dillinger Picture

This picture of Dillinger (in the vest) reminded me of Uncle Berle.

Dillinger Movie

In the first few minutes of the movie "Public Enemies" a picture of this old house flashes on the screen. My grandparents used to live in the house known as the Cote Place in the 1940's. I took this picture, the house is now gone.



John Dillinger escaped from the Crown Point, IN jail 3 March 1934, Mom was 14. She told us many stories as kids and then when she was older we would drive the roads of Kankakee and Iroquois counties and talk about everything. Dillinger was one subject. Her Dad hated the banks and liked Dillinger and often said if he was on the run and came to his house he would hide him in his barn. John was seen coming in from Indiana crossing into nearby Wichert several times then he went north on to Chicago. When he broke out of the jail he broke federal law for the first time by transporting a stolen car across a state line. He went through St John, IN and crossed over the state line on the Kankakee/Will County Line road going west. Uncle Nels Nelson lived on his Dads farm on that same road near to the spot the hostage talked about in this newsreel. The Area Police Command Center for the Dillinger search at this time was in Bradley. The cops all reported in to their jails because Dillinger had previously raided some jails for their weapons. Grandpa said they really went there to hide out! Mom told these family stories many times. Many years later the movie about Dillinger, "Public Enemies", had a very brief flash of a big old house just south of Wichert that oddly, Grandpa used to live in back in the 1940's. It was the Cote Place, named after the family that owned the Tile Yard, a few other business and many, many acres of farmland. The scene is in the first few minutes of the movie and I'm posting a picture I took of it a few years ago. I remembered it well from my youth. It's gone now. We used to live in Ohio and I have an old newspaper from there, an EXTRA EDITION about the killing of Dillinger, hanging on my wall.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Matts bunch

The girls talk to Mom's picture in their living room as if Mom is there! So sweet!

Matt Walwer family.

Mom just loved every second she ever spent with these darlings. She loved all little ones!

Mom and Matt Walwer family



I had a banner made to use at Mom's birthday celebrations. The picture is from her 75th birthday party.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013


My Great-great grandfather's walking cane is displayed in a place of honor at a family members home!

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Woodall Twins

James Milton and William Henry Woodall (twins born 1844), were sons of Webster Woodall and grandsons of James Woodall and Mary Fears. William Henry Woodall married Elizabeth Chaney on 19 November, 1868. James Milton Woodall married Eliza Ann Burdine on 27 October, 1865. They were both veterans of the Civil War and have military headstones. William Henry Woodall spent time in a Confederate prison. William Henry Woodall died on November 20, 1929 and is buried in a family grave plot at Acorn, KY. James Milton Woodall died on April 20, 1921 and is buried in Bethany Baptist Church Cem., Burdine Valley.

W H Woodall married Elizabeth Chaney, daughter of Allen Chaney, in 1868. They had nine children: Mary Jane Woodall Whitaker Taylor, John Andrew Woodall, Nancy Elizabeth Woodall Arthur (Mom's Grandma), Temperance Catherine Woodall, Lucinda Woodall Whitis, James William "Jim Peg" Woodall, Henry Green Woodall, George Frank Woodall and Daniel Webster Woodall.

 Temperance (Tempy) married Andrew Pruitt and lived in Galesburg, IL. They had six children. He died 28 Jan 1938 and is buried there.

Nancy Woodall married John Ambrose Arthur on 2 June , 1892. John and Nan farmed on the bottom land of the Rockcastle River between Line Creek and Ano, KY that once was a part of the Evans Plantation.  (They had numerous children to include Mom's Mother Mary Etta, born 2 Mar 1897 killed 10 Oct 1952). She died on March 23, 1934, he 16 Oct 1951. They are buried in Arthur-Adkins Cemetery, Ano, KY which is across the road from their home place. My Grandparents, George and Mary Etta Arnold are buried right next to her parents; she wanted to be near them and he wanted to be in a high and dry grave.  — My mother Lucille Cousin, was born on 13  October 1920 in rural Somerset.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

William Henry Woodall (Mom's Great Grandpa)

By Denton Hargis
William Henry Woodall (1844-1929) Grandson of James Woodall and Mary Fears. W H Woodall was a Civil War Veteran. He married Elizabeth Chaney, daughter of Allen Chaney, in 1868. They had nine children: Mary Jane Woodall_Whitaker_Taylor, John Andrew Woodall, Nancy Elizabeth Woodall_Arthur, Temperance Catherine Woodall, Lucinda Woodall_Whitis, James William "Jim Peg" Woodall, Henry Green Woodall, George Frank Woodall and Daniel Webster Woodall. This photo courtesy of Mike Shaw, grandson of George Frank Woodall...

Monday, September 16, 2013

Mom 15 Sep 2013

She was having a good day.

Gramma Cuzz Sep 15 2013

Mom was sharp witted and strong this morning. We talked about her new cards and letters, new babies in the family and such. She likes to keep up with things. I can't remember ever seeing her without her false teeth but now she is dressed each morning for her comfort and choice not mine.

Geneseo Millers Card

They took the time to make her a card. She said "Now isn't that nice!"  She loved it!

Sunday, September 1, 2013


HAPPY BIRTHDAY AUNT TEVIS! Yesterday was Aunt Tevis' 79th birthday. Mom misses her every singe day. I was back to visit Mom yesterday and stopped in to see Uncle George to give him a billfold but he was out. I have what Aunt Dora and I believe to be a billfold full of play money that had belonged to Tevis in the 1940's. I also had a used 1951 St Anne Bank checkbook that I had thought was Grandpa's but while looking through it Aunts Dora and Dorothy said it was Aunt Velma's. Cousin Vickie will give it to her.

Picture is From left; Tevis, Dora, Velma.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Mom and Desirae Watson

Picture taken 8/5/88. Today is Desirae's 27th birthday

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Hometown History

This is from Jim Ridings newest book on Kankakee.
John B. Williams lived at 747 N. Evergreen Avenue.
On the morning of Feb. 25, 1943, he got on a Kankakee bus
that took workers to the arsenal at Elwood. He sat several
rows in front of other black men on the bus. The bus driver,

Curtis Norton, told Williams to sit in the back of the bus with
the other "colored" men. William refused. An argument began.
Norton called Kankakee police, and officers Jay
Cahan and Joseph Mathews took Williams from the bus to the
city hall for a hearing on the complaint.
In a brave act of protest, six other black men on the
bus got off with Williams and went with him to city hall. It was
an unusual act of defiance for the time.
Those men were Andy Franks, 952 E. Mulberry
Street; Willie Jackson, 733 N. Wildwood Avenue; R.J. Smith,
693 N. Wildwood Avenue; Sangster Theophilus, 694 N.
Evergreen Avenue; George Freeman, 747 N. Evergreen
Avenue; and James M. Morgan, 894 N. Evergreen Avenue.
Police Magistrate Edward Hoennicke dismissed the
case against Williams, saying that the bus driver had no right
to order Williams to change seats.
But Hoennicke chastised the others for coming along
with Williams, saying they wasted hours that should have been
used in producing material for the war effort.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Arnolds Christmas 1951

Back row,  Edith, Velma, Lucille, Dorothy, Gertie, Tevis.
Front row, Mardene, Berle, Etta, George, Welty, Dora.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Happy Birthday Phyllis Ann

She was born 19 July 1939. Picture was taken at the stone house along the Kankakee River.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Foltz Reunion 7 July 2013

Foltz Reunion 7 July 2013
               Charlotte Miller was born 12 Feb 1891 the sister to Luther Christian Miller, my Grandfather. She married Cloice Elwood Foltz 4 May 1915 and had 11 children. We went to the yearly Foltz reunion ever since I can remember. There were a lot of connections between our families beside that marriage. Mom's parents lived on the Taylor farm just north of the Foltz place. The younger Arnold's attended the Dunn one-room school across the road from their house along with the Foltz kids and other neighbors. Dad lived a few miles east and he met and married Mom then. Uncle Welty met and married Martha Howard, whose family lived across from the Foltz place. Aunt Edith met and married Sherwood Thorson from near Herscher.  And on and on.
               I was invited to this year's reunion and I had a good time and met people I hadn't seen in many, many years. Pictured is the family of Melvin and Louella Foltz Watson. They lived for a while near Edith's family in Bradley and attended the same school. The Watsons then moved to Kankakee and Sonny (the big guy in the front row) and I were in the same class. He married Pat Ducal who went to Clifton Central with Barb. Mom always attended the Foltz birthday and anniversary parties, wakes and such. Adele Foltz made it clear to Mom she was very welcome to come and that really made Mom feel good! And on and on.  

Friday, June 28, 2013

Dads Truck

Dad made a mistake and it cost him his life. We had been estranged for years mainly because of his second marriage and that situation. On Thursday 27 June 1974 I met him outside in the yard of his cousin Buck's house as I was leaving and he was arriving. He was never one to discuss anything, it was only: he spoke-you listened! But this day we had a real discussion about our relationship, family and such and I'm so glad we did because on Saturday 29 June 1974 I closed his eyes in the ER of St Mary's Hospital and said goodbye. Later I went and looked at the truck with it's melted wheels/tires and took his helmet which I still have. I thank God for that meeting and discussion.
  Dad was dumping gravel on the driveway of a new home. A state cop owned it and they were given "special favors" by companies to avoid situations. Drivers donated their time to avoid tickets. He was in a hurry because he had a frozen pizza business and he had to do his tavern route. The truck never touched the wires but it was close enough for the current to jump to it. The cop didn't attend the funeral but he went to the graveyard for those services although he stayed at the edge of the proceedings.
  I have the weekly paper from Clifton as well as the Kankakee paper from this date. I use to have a huge stack of newspapers but over the years it has shrunk; from moving, a flooded basement and I gave some away.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Rulo School picture


Subject: rulo    Rulo School, not sure of the date. Back row: Teacher Janie Hansford, Tilo McDonald, Bea McCalister, Liz Arthur, Nola Whitaker, Dice Arthur (Hargis), Frances Arthur; Middle row: Ted Arthur, Lina Whitaker, Cora Whitaker, Virge McCalister (Taylor), Rose McDonald, Burta McDonald; Front row: Earn Whitaker, Willie Arthur, Dave McCalister, Virgil Adkins, Henry Adkins, Jess Whitaker, Ida Adkins (Hash), Anna Arthur (Turner); and Rendy McCalister. -- Doyle Speaks
Lina Whitaker (1904-1994) married Grandma Etta Arthur Arnold's  brother Tom (James Thomas Arthur). Gramma's brother Alonzo "Ted" Arthur b. Jan. 26, 1903 d. Feb. 12, 1985  and sister Anna are here too. Tom and Lina were the first ones of the family to move to Kankakee. It was printed in the local newspaper when he left, I have the reprint here somewhere and it was about 1920.

Friday, June 14, 2013


Christine Arthur Woods on left, sisters Helen, Melba with Marlene and their Mother Lina Whitaker Arthur. Lina married James Thomas Arthur, Grandma Etta Arnold Arthur's brother. Another brother was Lincoln, Christine's father.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Barbara Owens

This was Mom's cousin, by marriage. Her mother-in-law was Sarah, sister to Grandpa George Arnold.


Obituary for Barbara Owens

Visitation for Barbara Owens, 88, of Bradley, will be from 9 a.m. Friday until the 11 a.m. funeral service at the Clancy-Gernon Funeral Home, Bourbonnais. Burial will be in Kankakee Memorial Gardens, Aroma Township. Memorials may be made to Vitas Hospice. She died Monday (June 10, 2013) at the Miller Center in Kankakee.

Mrs. Owens was a licensed practical nurse. She retired from St. Mary's Hospital, where she had worked at the Sisters Infirmary. She was born Aug. 30, 1924, in Pineville, Ky., the daughter of Estil and Maggie Murphy Gooch. Her husband, Clarence Louis Owens, whom she married March 23, 1946, in Harlan, Ky., died May 2, 1987. She was an active member and past oracle of the Royal Neighbors. She enjoyed traveling, reading, doing crossword puzzles and sewing.

Surviving are one son and two daughters-in-law, Doyle and Jackie Owens, of Bourbonnais, and Beverly Owens, of Evanston; one daughter, Ann Schroeder, of Bourbonnais; six grandchildren, Brandon (Cassie) Owens, Megan (Brian) Cooper, Scott (Marnie) Schroeder, Jason (Monica) Schroeder, Hillary (Nick) Owens-Limber and Blake Owens; and seven great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her parents; one son, C. David Owens; sister, Mabel Comber; and two brothers, Oliver Preston Gooch and Bud Gooch.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Mom, May 2013

Her mind is so much clearer since they reduced her medications.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Mom Having a Beer

After many years without she asked for a beer! Granddaughter Pam Walwer Burch brought her some.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

KCC Graduation

Mom and Marilyn Rose came to my ceremony and I still have their cards and pictures.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Pikes Peak 1968

Mom and Aunt Dorothy went up the mountain in 1968.

Monday, May 27, 2013

They honor their brother on Memorial Day 1985

 Aunts Dorothy and Tevis, Uncle Welty and Mom at Uncle Berle's grave.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Mom and Dad
Phyllis Ann, Marilyn Rose, Bill.
Dickie, Denny Ray. Probably 1948.