A little family background first. If your not particularly in this way-back
stuff just skip it.
Robert Franklin Haizlip moved west from Chapel Hill, NC towards the end of
the 1800’s. He was with his two brothers William & (?). Both of his
brothers were trained Dr.’s. William went on south to Nederland, TX.
There are several Haizlip still in that area.
The other brother settled around Hot Springs, AR. There are likewise
several kinfolk around there. I do not know any of them but have met a few
of the older ones now gone as they visited here.
Bob (grandad) stopped a bit in Little Rock, AR. He joined a singing quartet
there & there is a picture of them around here. He was a very handsome
man & parted his abundant hair down the middle as was the custom of the
time…I part mine down the middle these days also.
Eventually Bob worked his way down into the Indian Territory town of
Idabel. Idabel was new then. He might have moved-on but had become
deeply in love with one Ruby Haizlip. Ruby had been born in 1888 and Bob
was a bit older having been around since 1877. They were married in the
opening years of the 1900’s.
An issue of the 1907 McCurtain Gazette of Idabel in the newly created
state of Oklahoma stated that Ruby and Robert Haizlip were currently
constructing a new home on Adams Ave.
Ruby Igo Haizlip (or Boob as nearly everyone called her for obvious reasons)
came from a long line of pioneers. Several branches of the Igo family can
be traced back to the original founders of America. Her father was
Garrett Igo; a rounder.
Garrett was born in 1847 in Boones Fort (Daniel), Kentucky. In 1850 his
father loaded the family (around 9 of them by then) into the wagon and
they moved to the NE Texas community of Vesey. In 1860 at the ripe old
age of 13 Garrett enlisted in the 1st Texas Legion Mounted (Calvary) to
fight the Yankees.
He fought through several bloody campaigns and was eventually bottled-up
at Vicksburg, MS with the western Confederate army. Forced to surrender
he was sent to a Union prisoner of war camp in Illinois. He was paroled in
1864 by promising to never bear arms against the United States again.
He returned home to Texas and promptly broke his word to “them damn
Yankees!” by signing up with another Texas regiment. Fortunately for us,
he was too late to go back into action before Robert E. Lee surrendered.
After the war Garrett put his hand to virtually everything to keep his
family fed. He had a country grocery in Ackworth, TX. He was also a
farmer, wrangler, hunting guide, surveyor and many other things.
Amongst his children he and wife Mary were known as “Good Papa” and
“Good Moma”. They were always called such by everyone in the family.
Garrett was also known by everyone as a mean old man. After going through
several years of brutal civil war he probably was.
Around 1895 or so Good Moma had had enough of him. She moved the kids
and herself north across Red River into the then Indian Territory.
Settling on the same city block where she raised her children, Ruby raised
her children and my own mother spent the rest of her life after retirement.
Garrett did love his family in his own gruff, rough manner. He moved to
Idabel also. Seeing that Good Mama had no intention of taking him back he
remarried and had two more children one of whom died in infancy
Ruby had married Bob and they built house #2 on the family lot. There
would eventually be 4 Igo/Haizlip homes built there. The original Igo home
burned some years later. Boob & Bob removed their first home and built a
more substantial house around 1930. Bob would never allow Boob to build
another, but after his death in 1959, she immediately had the old house
moved & built her own little home which is still standing.
Aunt Gera (Gig) was the oldest of the three Haizlip sisters…Gera, Thalia &
Eloise (mom). Born in Idabel she went to the then all-girls teachers college
at Chickasha. She taught home Economics. at Idabel for several years.
Thalia married Dwight Anderson. Dwight was a watch-maker. He eventually
owned Idabel’s only Jewelry store. Thalia raised her two daughters Andrea
and Sylvia while working at various jobs. Dwight bought Veston’s share of
grandad’s place (see below) years later and built a dairy on it. He went
back to the jewelry business later still.
Veston was from Sand Springs (near Tulsa). His folks, Mom & Pop Gardner,
were an all-American set of parents. Pop loved to fish; mom loved to cook.
They moved to Idabel after he retired.
Veston was a born horse trader. He told me several stories about trading
while he was growing-up, however, I sadly can’t remember any of them.
Ves was a businessman most of his life. The first I recall was delivering
gasoline for a gas & oil distributor, Denison Oil Co., partly owned by
grandad, R.F. Haizlip, Bob.
Grandad later opened an Oliver tractor dealership. He & Ves were partners
in this somehow. Grandad retired while doing this but kept the shop open as
a point on the local “spit & whittle” club of old men. Prior to all the nursing
homes, there were always a few dozen old men working their way up/down
main street. They would stop & talk, move-on & talk to someone else. Bob
kept several lawn chairs in front of the shop for ‘visitors’ and in winter
they all sat around the fire inside.
By the time the Oliver shop evolved into a retirement center Ves was into
freight hauling which occupied the rest of his working life. In those days
prior to Fedex & all the other delivery services, all freight came into
McCurtain county through one of Ves’ trucks. He saw an opportunity for an
monopoly and got it locked-up after a few years.
Eventually, he (& Gig) owned all the freight business from Ft. Smith down
through McCurtain county over to Durant and down to Sherman-Denison TX.
That was a huge job & he was gone from before daylight to after dark for
several years.
He also partnered with brother in law Dwight Anderson in raising cattle for
many years. Grandad Bob owned a big place south of town where he allowed
Ves & Dwight to raise cows…because they were married to his daughters.
We, the family, built a big cabin on that place where we all would spend
nights & have big parties. It had an outhouse complete with spiders & an
old well you had to use a bucket to draw water. I loved it out there!
And in addition to all this work, Ves was constantly building houses. He
would get on far enough along for them to move into, move their belongings
& sell the old house. He did this several times. One summer Gig was off to
OSU for a teacher continuing education course for a month. She told Ves
there better not be another house to move into when she got home…or
She left & with Dwight & Diane’s help & everyone else he could Shanghai,
he got the new house finished-in one month!! He then worked his butt-off
to have them moved before Gig got home & made it by the skin of his teeth.
“Never more!”, Gig said & this time Ves agreed. That was the last house in
town he built. I believe that most of them are still standing. But, he always
used wood cut in local saw mills which was not kiln dried as it is now. Also it
was various thickness & width. Sometimes as the wood cured through the
years the house would become “sway back”.
Sometime after 1952 (when Diane & Avery were married) Ves & Gig traded
their house for T-Bone Hill. An 880 acre heaven for me to hunt & fish &
explore. I loved that place. I had been spending summers with Boob (Ruby
Igo Haizlip-grandma). Veston would pick me up every day to go hauling
freight with him. Somehow he could always get me to do hard jobs & come-
out having fun.
They split the cow herd with Dwight & Thalia, moved the cabin to T-Bone &
set-up shop there. We all built another house about 40′ over for Diane &
Avery. Over the years the parking spot between the housed became a
covered carport & finally received a concrete floor. It was enclosed to
become more bedrooms for kids. It was a fascinating labyrinth of a house.
I became a T-Bone Hill employee about the second year after they all got
moved-in. I’ll cut-off this background as this is about where the stories
about Diane & Avery begin.


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