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100 Years Ago

From December 1916

Chief asks citizens to yield to fire truck

After the big new fire truck had narrowly missed striking a Mr. Dickson’s buggy in answering the second fire alarm Saturday morning, Fire Chief Beyette has appealed to the citizens of Denton to stop when an alarm is turned in until they see which way the run is to be made. There is an ordinance requiring this but the department has been reluctant to make complaints in the past.

“There have been delays on several of the last runs because of people getting in the way of the truck,” said Chief Beyette.

He added, “Traffic is required to pull to the side of the street when the alarm is sounded and it must comply with that requirement for its own safety and for the benefit of the property owners.”

Santa letters

Dear Santa Claus:

Please bring me a knife, a pair of pants, a new belt and some fireworks, all kinds of nuts. Some candy and some fruit and that is all I want this Christmas. Don’t forget the children across the sea.

Your friend, Carl Smith


Dear Old Santa Claus:

I would appreciate a book, fountain pen or a watch bracelet. Fruit, nuts, candy and anything you feel like leaving for me. Don’t forget my little sister Mary Joe, Mama and Papa. And all the orphans caused by the war. Also the poor and needy in our town and county. Good bye, Santa.

Georgia E. Blankenship


Dear Santa Claus:

I am a little girl 5 years old. I want you to bring me a doll and a doll trunk, nuts, fruit and candy.

Don’t forget my Sunday School teacher, Mrs. Jones. I love her.

Ida True Keller


Dear Santa Claus:

I am a little boy 6 years old and you are about all I can think about now. Please bring me a little wagon, a little boy doll, a little miller toy, a tinker toy, nuts, fruit, candy and fireworks.

Your little friend,

Wendell Whitehead

75 Years Ago

From December 1941

Congress declares war, Denton prepares

Congress voted a declaration of war against Japan today after President Roosevelt requested immediate action as an answer to Japan’s “unprovoked and dastardly attack” on Hawaii.

Preparations in support of the war are already under way in the city and county. Denton County Judge Gerald Stockard initiated the formation of 18 air watch units in the county a few weeks back.

City Engineer W.N. Harris has constructed a 1,500-pound portable power generator powered by gasoline that could be rushed to the municipal building to operate police broadcasts in case any breakdown occurred at the plant.

Denton Mayor Lee Preston immediately appointed a 12-member Denton Defense Council to coordinate Civil Defense efforts.

In addition to the mayor, the members are: Otis Fowler, Mrs. R.W. Bass, W.D. Barrow, Ben C. Ivey, Aldon S. Lang, Bullock Hyder, S.B. Graham, L.H. Ligon, Fred H. Minor, Mrs. L.H. Moore, and county judge Gerald Stockard, the county defense coordinator.



Government says no new tires now until Jan. 4 when rationing will be put into effect. Let us put “New-Treads” on your smooth tires. How do we do this? Buff off the old tread and apply the New-Tread.

Firestone guarantees thousands of miles left in your old, smooth tires. Sam Laney Tire Co., phone 67.

Santa letters

Dear Santa:

I want you to bring me magic skin doll, telephone that will talk back to me and I want you to bring me some skates. We have been singing some Christmas songs. I like to sing them.

Dorothy Jean Rudd, Krum


Dear Santa:

I am a little boy just 3 years old and I have tried awful hard to be sweet. Please bring me a steam shovel, sand digger and a tractor. I’ll need some nuts and candy, too. And don’t forget my little sister, Patsy Ruth, for she’s swell. I think a rattler would suit her.


Dickie Boner

PS — Don’t forget Patricia Ann this year. She’s away out in California.


Dear Santa:

I am a little girl 5 years old. I live at 1315 Maple. I will be happy with anything you give me but I especially would like a baby doll. We would like to have a blackboard and Bibles left at our house, too.

Gene Colette Parks


Dear Santa:

I am a little boy 7 years old and in the third grade. I would like a BB gun. Don’t forget my mother, daddy, sister, brother and all the poor children. I have tried and tried to be good.


Freddie Hopkins, Krum

50 Years Ago

From December 1966

City-County Day Nursery to move to church

Directors of the Denton City-County Day Nursery have accepted the offer of facilities from the First Methodist Church and plans have been made for the move around Jan. 1.

The nursery board voted earlier to close its facility at 327 W. Hickory due to unsafe conditions.

The nursery, for mothers who must work to subsist, will be housed in the church until permanent quarters can be established.

A fund has been created to build a new nursery. Contributions are being received at Denton County National Bank.



Christmas is happening at Skillern’s! Six-foot aluminum tree with 10-inch revolving tree stand and 12-inch revolving color lamp (bulb not included) for $10.88.

Denton County Carol Sing set for tonight

The spirit of Christmas in Denton will be demonstrated tonight when the second annual Denton County Carol Sing is held on the north side of the courthouse square.

It will start at 8:45 o’clock and end at 10.

Everyone in Denton County — and beyond — is invited to attend this event.

Trumpeters for the northeast and northwest towers of the square will herald the start of the program.

Leading the community singing will be two members of the North Texas State University School of Music — Dean Kenneth Cuthbert and Dr. Stephen Farish.


Note: There were no Santa letters in 1966 newspapers.

25 Years Ago

From December 1991

Landry recalls his B-17 days at UNT Conference

One of America’s most famous cowboys recalled his days as a World War II “fly boy” Friday during a University of North Texas conference.

Former Dallas Cowboys coach Tom Landry, a B-17 pilot in Europe during the war, was one of nine veteran pilots who discussed their roles in the war as part of UNT’s “1941: Texas Goes to War” conference.

Mr. Landry recalled one incident in which he and a co-pilot were flying back to England with little fuel from a mission in Czechoslovakia. When all four engines stalled midway through the flight they decided to bail out of the plane.

He said he then discovered some fuel in the plane. He then put the fuel in which restarted the engines.

“I don’t know how we survived,” Mr. Landry said. “The good Lord must have been with us.”

Mr. Landry said the weather often caused problems for pilots flying out of England because radar and other technological advances were just being developed.

But he credited the success of the B-17s in the war as a deciding factor in the war.

Santa Letters

Dear Santa Claus:

How are you? My cousin wants a toy Heather, she walks and she talks. I want a Barbie car and a sleeping bag.

Are you cold up in the North Pole? How is Rudolph? Is Miss Santa OK? Bye dude.


Catherine Holcomb


Dere Santa:

I want a bell from your slay and a ninetendoe and on Crismiss Pleas come to mie House.

Jeoff Hendrix


Dear Santa:

I would like a baby Dalmation. The rest is your decision.

From Amy Freidenberger


Dear Santa Claus:

Yo, man hi dude. Can I have a toy crossbow and a BB gun and a dart gun, Some Navy pants, and camouflage shirt. Also a yo-yo ball, a pistil and survival knife. And some cologne.

Love, D.J. Walli


— Compiled from the files

of the Denton Record-Chronicle

by DJ Taylor