Crowd of 4,000 at Mobeetie Today for anniversary of Founding of Fort Elliott. This story transmitted through the courtesy of W. T. Beck of the Mobeetie Telephone exchange. By a staff correspondent
Mobeetie June 18 - Probably the greatest gathering of old-times and pioneers known to the Panhandle of Texas assembled here today to pay tribute to the pioneers who blazed this trail, making possible a fertile land of plenty where once was dessert and desolation. Today is the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of Fort Elliott. Nearly 4,000 persons are gathered here for the celebration.
Opening last night with the Old Fiddlers' contest, which was won by Shorty Loder of Mobeetie, the festivities were in full swing today. Barbecue, a baseball game between Pampa and Wheeler, a rodeo, a dance tonight and dozens of other features are on the program.
The speaking program opened this morning when F. P. Reid of Pampa introduced Henry Ansley of the Globe, who presided. A. B. Stinett of Amarillo paid tribute to Temple Houston, Woodburn, Browning, Willis, Miller and other old timers who made possible the settling up of the Panhandle country. He brought greetings from Amarillo, the board of City Development and the Tri-State Fair associations in particular.
Mrs. T. V. Reeves of Canyon, Secretary of the Panhandle-Plains Historical Society, and J. A. Hill, President of the West Texas State Teachers College told of the work of this society and of the college.
W. A. Palmer of Amarillo outlined the development of the Panhandle in the half-century. Mrs. Olive K. Dixon of Miami, widow of the famous scout and soldier, told of the Battle of Buffalo Wallow, the anniversary of which will be celebrated September 11 and 12.
All the old timers who have lived in the Panhandle for the last forty years were ask to stand and were introduced. Among them were Johnny Long, Richard Bussell, who drove a bull team from Leavenworth, Kansas to Salt Lake City across the Panhandle years ago. Ben Baird, Jeff Wynn, W. B. (Skillity Bill) Johnson, Mrs Kohny, Will Carter, G. M. Black, J. H. Ficke, D. C. Davis, H. B. Stiller, Vas Stickley, Wilson Harrah, Jim Stroope, L D. Miller, Aleck Melton, R. T. Alexander, Frank Young, J. M. Oakes, B. R. Lee and Ben Masterson, Jr.
Led by Mr. Ansley, the crowd rose and pledged themselves to carry on the great work of development and empire building begun by these and other pioneers in the Pandhandle.
The Fort Elliott Highway association is meeting this afternoon at Mobeetie and the Panhandle-Plains Historical Society will meet this evening.