My dad’s Small Town World was Mannford, Oklahoma. Old Mannford, named after Mann’s Ford. By the by, Mann’s Ford wasn’t a vehicle.
Here’s the Wiki-definition. A ford is a shallow place with good footing where a river or stream may be crossed by wading or inside a vehicle. A ford is mostly a natural phenomenon, in contrast to a low water crossing, which is an artificial bridge that allows crossing a river or stream when water is low.
You already knew that. Right? 🙂
Anyway, Old Mannford was a town of less than 500 people. But believe me, they were wonderful, colorful people!
I know that, because a lot of my family lived there.
Back in the day when my dad was still a kid in school, the Men of Mannford lost their pants.
One night like every other night, everyone came in from work (well, Granddad and Uncle Frank, anyway. Not sure if Uncle Paul was still in school or old enough to work) ate supper, took off their clothes and went to bed.
When they got up the next morning, Granddad’s pants were gone. And Uncle Frank’s pants were gone. Not good, because back then people took off their pants with their stuff still in their pockets (change, wallet, pocket knife, whatever men carried) and laid them over a chair or dresser, ready to be put back on the next morning.
That’s right. Everyone wore the same work clothes several days in a row, because doing laundry was quite an undertaking. And new clothes weren’t easy to come by, moneywise.
Granddad was really unhappy about losing their britches. He asked around, and nearly every house in town had been entered and the men’s pants stolen!
Back in the day, people didn’t lock their doors when they went to bed at night. (Imagine that!) So someone waltzed in, picked up the men’s drawers and waltzed right back out. Someone who knew who had dogs that would rat them out and which houses had people who didn’t work.
The rest of the story? The town did find their stolen pants in a ditch on the edge of the city. But the pockets were empty. (Of course.) And their money gone.
While I believe Dad’s story about a pant-less town, I have a feeling SOMEONE knows the truth about whodunit!
Having heard stories from G-Man about kids who stole gas caps from all the cars in his Small Town World, I have a feeling it might have been a couple of high school kids who knew who lived where and maybe even where they slept.
Of course, I’m just guessing.
So . . . have you heard this tale about the pant-less town? Knowing the time it probably happened (late thirties, early forties) can you make a guess?
The statute of limitations has to have run out by now. Why not ‘fess up? I’ll never tell!
April 7, 2016 at 8:50 am
LOL I love it!! It gives a whole new meaning to being pants!!
April 7, 2016 at 8:51 am
April 7, 2016 at 1:16 pm
I knew what you meant, Holly. And so true!
April 16, 2016 at 6:49 am
April 7, 2016 at 12:13 pm
Interesting story! Thanks for sharing.
April 7, 2016 at 1:16 pm
I know, Lori. And fun to hear from Daddy. Still wondering who the culprit was. 🙂
April 7, 2016 at 5:30 pm
Mannford had a population of 205 when I was a kid (born 1-11-1939). The population sign was just east of the east driveway at Ray & Ruby Spess’s home on the south side of Highway 51 as you entered Mannford. (They had two driveways).
Ruby’s dad, N. S. Mitchell, ran the Texaco service station just about a block past their east driveway.
I spent many days in the house you reference because Ruby’s sister, Nola, had all girls and they would trade me for Phyllis during summer to get me kout of the house.
I have not heard the “Pants Less” story and enjoyed reading about it.
April 8, 2016 at 5:08 am
I remember those driveways and Granddad Mitchell’s station. I didn’t know the families traded kids, though, Eldin. Dad has great memories about time he spent with you. You might see a few Eldin Tales in the future. 🙂
April 8, 2016 at 10:52 am
There are many tales he will not be able to tell too. The most memorable was when Carl Flinchum hung me to a tree limb by my new WIDE leather belt and walked off with me screaming. Fun back then would be torture or child abuse in these days. Too bad!
Another time Carol was on a Ford tractor plowing while wearing his oilfield hard hat. I was in the shade of a walnut tree, threw a walnut and hit his hard hat. What an awakening!!
So many memories of a varied childhood back in the day.
April 9, 2016 at 10:02 am
I’ve heard the plowing story, Eldin. I’ll have to get dad to tell me again from his POV so I can share it here. LOL!