Alex Oklahoma Historical Events Profile and Resource Guide, City or community of Alex, Oklahoma Historical Events and Facts, Information, Relocation, Real Estate

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Alex, Oklahoma Historical Events



1930, January 28
"Vault That Wouldn't Lock Changes Robbers Plans - Twice"
The Alex First National Bank was robbed on Jan. 28, 1930, according to a report in the Alex Tribune. The loot was reported at $2,166.75.

Three men drove up in front of the bank in a Ford sedan at noon. Two men entered the bank while the third remained in the vehicle. Grady Harris and Ethel Lawson were the only bank officials in the building. They heard "stick 'em up" and saw a six shooter in their faces. The robbers threatened and told them to lie on the floor. Miss Lawson was ordered to open the door and the bandits entered the tellers' cage.

Harris was ordered to open the safe and put the money in a bag that one of the bandits removed from the bib of his overalls. Some customers, unaware of the robbery, came into the bank and were herded with the officials into the vault. The vault wouldn't lock, so the bandits took Harris out, ordered him to get his hat, go out of the door of the bank, get in the back seat of the car and act as if nothing was happening.

Miss Hattie Jackson lived over the bank. She became suspicious because of the loud talking and cursing and went to the telephone office, also over the bank. Misses White and Jackson watched Harris get into the car and they saw the car leave the bank. They quickly set off the alarm.

Officer O.B. Klepper, Frank Williams and Emmett Drone, who was an Oklahoma City policeman, were visiting and parked across the street from the bank. They immediately gave chase and shot the tires on the vehicle. The bandits had warned Harris that should they be followed, they would kill him. Harris jumped out the window of the vehicle during the chase. The bandits were either glad to get rid of their hostage or shocked as they sped on without him. Harris made himself known to the posse before they shot at him. He had only been bruised from the plunge out of the car, so he joined the posse following the bandits.

One robber left the car, the other two turned toward Ninnekah. One-half mile north and one mile east on a temporary bridge of the tributary of the Little Washita, the car either caught fire or was set afire. The bandits fled on foot but were captured in Oklahoma City the following day.

Robbers entered the bank again on March 4, 1932. They ordered Harris and Laws to lie on the floor. S.L. Neill and R.W. McClintock were also in the bank. The bandits picked up the cash, ordered the men into the vault. The door wouldn't lock and the bandits ran out the front door.

Laws got the gun in the vault and ran after them. He opened fire. Neill followed with a 45 automatic and McClintock with a high powered rifle. The three ran down the street firing as the car was fleeing north and then lost it.

On a tip a short time later, several drove south to the White house and surrounded it. The robbers' car was on the west side of the house and was recognized by the bullet holes. The posse entered the house and found a trap door to the attic. They ordered the bandits to toss down their guns and come out. This they did. The money was recovered. The White family was not at home and missed the excitement.

Submitted by Shirley Bray.
This article was published by the Chickasha Daily Express in a special 1992 edition written about "Life in Alex. . ." It was given to me by my mother, Allie Stuckey-Horn, longtime resident of Alex, OK.



1903 - 1995
School in Alex
In 1903, a Community House was built in Alex on the lot owned by Mr. M. O. Foster. The Community House was the site for religious services, political meetings, socials, and school. Each child paid $1.50 per month. Patrons furnished lumber and made school furniture. The first teacher was Mr. Bass. In 1904-06, the teacher was Mrs. C. J. Taylor and in 1906-07, Mrs. Coghill.

In 1907, a new school site was purchased on the south side of town on the crest of the hill overlooking the business district. A two-story brick building with six rooms and a spacious basement was built. Mr. Cooley was the first superintendent in the new building.

in 1918, a tornado caused considerable damage to the school building. A new brick building was finally completed, consisting of four class rooms and an auditorium. It was located east of the business district. Mr. Pleasant resigned as superintendent and Mr. Hancock returned to that position.

By 1919-1920, Alex High School was accredited for twelve units with Mr. Jesse as superintendent and Mrs. Mary Vaughn as principal. Legend has it that a fence separated the playground of boys and girls.

1920-1923, Mr. O.E. Ooley, as superintendent, succeeded in getting the school accredited for fifteen and a half units.

1921-22 Alex had its first High School graduating class. A new modern wing of four rooms was added to the school. Enrollment at the beginning of the 1922-23 school year was three hundred fifty-four. A music program was added, as well as an Agriculture Department.

1923-23, football was started. The school was crowded and teachers were needed to accommodate the growing number of students, so the fourth year of study was dropped until space and money could be raised. Alex High School had the first graduating class in 1921-1922. In 1923, there was a faculty of eight teachers.

1940 - Twelve teachers and eighteen teachers thirty-one years later.

1947-1961 - School began Vocational Agriculture, Vocational Home Economics and reinstated their football and baseball programs. A building to accommodate Future Farmers classes was built. Barracks buildings, formerly used to house soldiers during WWII were brought to the campus from Camp Gruber, near Muskogee, for a teacher-age and Vocational Home Economics department. A building for music was constructed.

1954 - Bonds were voted for a free standing gymnasium with an attached lunchroom. The old gym was converted to an auditorium and a building for elementary grades was built in 1957. The Alex School library was rated as one of the best in the state during this period.

1961 - 1969 - Improvements were made to the physical school plant. The buildings exteriors were updated, new rest rooms added, a new cafe built, the auditorium remodeled and air conditioned. Kindergarten was started in 1969.

1975 - Alex School District acquired title for the fairgrounds and Little League Park area of approximately ten acres on the northeast corner of Highway 19 and 19c.

1975-1976 - Vocational-agriculture building and two metal classroom buildings were constructed for the technology department and the home economics department.

1985-1992 - Advanced classes were provided over satellite from Oklahoma State University.

1991 - New technology education laboratory developed for 7th and 8th grade. New fair barn constructed and a horticulture greenhouse constructed.

1992 - Applied Mathematics, Applied Biology/Chemistry and Physics classes initiated. A new lunchroom building constructed at Bradley one of the annexed schools of Alex School District. Title acquired to the Johnny Foster house, land and mechanic shop. A vocational business program started. An Interactive Educational Television network with three other schools and the vo-tech initiated.

1993 - Remodeled present gym.

1994 - Participated in a school-to-work consortium.

1995 - Alton Rawlins employed as superintendent of Alex School.

The citizens of Alex community point with pride to the accomplishments of its graduates. . .
Excerpts of Alex School History are taken from the book titled "TRAILS, RAILS, AND SCHOOL TALES, A History of 125 Schools and Communities of Grady County" written by Gwen Jackson, August 1995. Information provided for the Alex School article was gathered by Mr. and Mrs. Roy Peters. Mr. Peters was Superintendent of Alex School from 1947 to 1961. Mrs. Peters was a teacher in the Alex School system.

For more information on the history of Schools in Grady County or this book, contact the Grady County Historical Society, Chickasha.
Submitted by Shirley Bray



1878 - 1920 W. V. Alexander Credited With Founding of Alex.
"White settlers first came to the Alex area in 1878, published reports indicate. The town was named after W.V. "Uncle Red" Alexander, whose life is closely connected with the development of eastern Grady County area. He owned a huge ranch which covered a great deal of the county.
Uncle Red was born in Gordon Springs, AL in 1833. He came to Indian Territory when he was 18, where he spent several adventure-filled years. In 1857, he crossed the Rocky Mountains in a wagon train, going from Kansas City, KS to Salt Lake City, UT, then on to San Bernardino, CA. Later, he walked to Denison, TX.
Alexander enlisted in the army of the Confederate States of America and was made captain. He served with the second Cherokee regiment under Gen. Stand Watie and fought throughout the Civil War. Alexander was married twice, the first time to an Indian woman. Alexander acquired use of a huge tract of land. He had two children with his first wife, Mary (Chitwood) and Arthur. In 1874, he married Martha E. Davies at the old Choctaw Council House and in 1878 they moved to the Alex area, settling one-half mile west of the present townsite.
Uncle Red and Martha had six children -- Perry, Bert, Sheb, Leslie, Colonel and Robert.
In 1881, Alexander established a store south of his home. This was the only trading post for miles on the old Military Road. In 1885, he was able to get a post office established at the store. Settlers from miles around came to "Alex" to get their mail.
Alexander was a widely-known cattleman and was a strong believer in education. When Perry was ready for college, he bought a home in Norman. Perry was in the first class to start at the University of Oklahoma. For the next few years the family lived at Norman so Perry could attend school. However, he did not finish, as he preferred to work at the ranch.
Alexander knew the Younger and the James boys. It is said Jesse James spent a night at his home. In 1906 a tornado severely damaged his store, drugstore and house. About this same time, Sheb was bitten by a skunk while he was on a roundup.
Alexander died Jan. 23, 1920. A Masonic funeral was held at his home. He had been a 40-year member of the Masons and was a charter member of the Rush Springs Lodge. A special train carried his draped casket to be buried at Rose Hill Cemetery in Chickasha, OK."
This article was published on Wednesday, June 2, 1993 in a special Chickasha Daily Express edition headlined as "Life In Alex . . .History".
Submitted by Shirley Bray
The copy of this article was provided to me by Allie Stuckey-Horn, my mother and longtime resident of Alex, OK.

This page is for perpetual written accounts of historical events that have occurred in the city. Anyone who feels they have pertinent information may submit it. This includes all people in or out of Alex and could involve any interested adults or children with events or items that are of interest. Items may be submitted for publication on this page where they will remain as part of a historical archive for the city. Items of interest may include noteworthy events, special events of historical importance, information about area growth that pertains to the history of the city, and other pertinent notes. We hope to establish a large data base of information about the history of each city. Historical Societies are encouraged to open their own page on Key to the City for more extensive historical information.


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