THE GLENN & JEANNINE (DIGBY) BLAIR FAMILY
1923 - 2005 1931 - 2016
Robert Glenn Blair Wanda Jeannine Digby
LIFE BEFORE THEIR MARRIAGE:
|Robert Glenn Blair ("Glenn")|
|Glenn Blair Birth Certificate|
|Robert Glenn Blair birth record|
Robert Glenn Blair (“Glenn”) was born on May 15, 1923 at the foot of Sugarloaf mountain in Coryell county, Texas (about 10-12 miles north of Killeen, Texas).
|Halfway up Sugar Loaf Mt.|
Coryell county, Texas.
|Northwest to Sugar Loaf Mt.|
Coryell county, Texas.
|Sugar Loaf Mountain (mid left). Coryell county, Texas|
When Sugar Loaf was part of the Sugar Loaf Mortar Range, Fort Hood Army Base.
(View is south to north. Image by Billy Blair)
|Looking northwest to the|
community of Sugar Loaf.
Coryell county, Texas.
|H.O. & Bertie (Swan) Blair home where Glenn Blair was born.|
Base of Sugar Loaf Mountain. Coryell county, Texas
(now Sugar Loaf Mortar Range at Fort Hood Army Base).
Glenn was delivered at 12:00 am by a Dr. Woods from Killeen. Glenn said that he probably rode out to the family homeplace in a buggy. (Note: Glenn said that any other records pertaining to his birth or early childhood were lost in the 1933 fire that burned their home). Glenn’s parents were both 33 years old at the time of his birth. Aubrey, Glenn’s brother, said that Glenn’s name came from the following sources: “Robert” (after his grandfather, Robert Thomas Blair) and “Glenn” (after a friend who would always give his duck hunting catch to Aubrey because he didn’t want to clean them). Glenn’s father, Herbert Orlando Blair, was a farmer and his mother was a housewife. H.O. used to say the following about Glenn’s birth: “The buzzard laid him on a flat rock and the sun hatched him.” Glenn had the following memories of his early childhood:
1. “There weren’t many rooms in my parent’s house. They had a single wall, frame house that was very drafty. It was a small house, and you could see cracks in the wood shingles on the roof. I remember one year it was snowing in the winter; I woke up and there was a pile of snow on my bedcovers. It actually came in through a broken window.”
2. “I remember my father and some other men going up Sugarloaf mountain rattlesnake hunting. They would bring back a lot of dead rattlesnakes. They either used gasoline or dynamite to kill them; the snakes were just killed for sport. My father would also go robin hunting.”
3. “When I was about four years old, I was at my grandmother Blair’s house, which was about 200-300 yards up from our house. We were laying down on a quilt on the floor taking a nap. My sister, who was two years old, dropped a brick on my head. The brick was used as a door stop. It left a knot between my eyes for years.”
|Robert Thomas & Sallie (Whatley) Blair home.|
Sugarloaf Mountain, Coryell county, Texas.
4. “I stepped on an asp and was stung; I was sick for several days.”
5. “For fun, we would go to grandad Blair’s cow lot (pole corral). We would take pieces of the barn’s wood shingles that had fallen off and we’d swat big ol’ bumblebees with those shingles. Man, that was fun!”
6. "I remember a bunch of tarantulas in a huge ditch behind our house.”
7. "I wanted to go to granny Blair’s house one day. I kept pestering my mother and finally she said, ‘Go ahead’. I walked it alone, about a half mile. I was only a few years old.”
8. "We went to Brookhaven Baptist church in a wagon. I remember that my Sunday School teacher was a Culp girl (Note: Glenn was convinced it was Oveta Culp Hobby).
|Oveta Culp Hobby|
In 1927, Glenn’s family moved into a house in Killeen, Texas (It was aunt Molly Fergus’ home on Rancier Avenue. Molly Fergus owned the house, but didn’t live there). The house was large and had a Delco light plant (Note: In the 1920's, innovative farmers would pay the $ 250.00 for a Delco Light Plant, even though it was a lot of money at the time, just to generate their own electricity and store it in scores of batteries.
|A Delco Light Plant|
The Delco Light Plants would run lights, a few small farm machines, and early radios. Power for heavy farm inplements had to wait for REA in the 1930s to 1950s). Glenn’s family lived here about a year. Glenn’s father, H.O. Blair, worked for either one of the Bays or Norman families. They bought chickens, turkeys,....; it was a hardware business. There were no negroes in Killeen at the time. H.O. Blair owned a farm. This was the year of the drought and crop failure. They had less than a bale of cotton that year; they had to go to McKinney that Fall to pick cotton. Glenn had the chicken pox this year; his father bought him a tie because he was so sick. Glenn also had a stye on his eye that left a scar. Glenn’s uncle, R.G. Sutton, moved from the area around Killeen to Holland, Texas. R.G. went into the automotive garage business. On Valentine’s Day in 1928, Glenn’s family moved to Holland, Texas in Bell county; they lived in a stucco house on the southeast corner of . His father went into partnership with R.G. Sutton (still in 1927). The Blair family moved into a big frame house that was owned by Mrs. Sam Mewhinney; they later bought the house from her. (Note: This was the big house that burned in 1933). Glenn stated that he shot one buck deer in his life. He said he enjoyed seeing the deer alive a lot more than seeing it dead. He went with his father a couple more years, but he took a camera instead. The place where they hunted was a deer lease at “Twelve Mountains” below Marble Falls, Texas. H.O. Blair and R.G. Sutton would go each year. Several of the Suttons went the times that Glenn went with them (Note: The timetable for the deer hunts is unsure). One day when Glenn was picking cotton as a young boy, the cotton plants were over his head (Note: That was before they genetically engineered the plants to be shorter with more cotton). No wind could get through the rows of cotton due to the height of the plants; it was very hot work. Glenn remembered traveling movie shows. They would go to a field and tie a canvas in the trees to see the movies. Later, during the Depression, they would show movies in an old, abandoned building. The movies probably only cost a dime or quarter, but not many people went because they had no money. Glenn had a problem with sleep walking in Holland. Later, when he was going to school at the University of Texas in Austin, he was sleep walking. He woke up at 2 am on the U.T. campus in his pajamas.
1929 was the year of the Stock Market Crash. Glenn began the first grade. His teacher was Mrs. Connie Mewhinney and the school superintendant was R.E.L. Jones. Glenn was a sickly little weakling all through school; because of this, he spent more time reading than playing sports. Glenn usually had the top grades in his class. 1929 was also the year of the biggest snowstorm in Bell county history. The snow was probably 12" to 18" deep on flat ground. Glenn remembered: “There were several big cedar trees at our house. One night, I heard a strange noise, so I got up and went outside. I looked up and, in the large cedar tree next to the house, there was a huge, white snow owl. He stayed until morning and then flew off. It was a very spooky situation for a little kid.” (The first H.O. Blair home in Holland burned down. There were a row of cedar trees on both sides of the sidewalk. This is where Glenn saw the snow owl. Glenn’s room was on the east side of the house. The house was one story tall with 14' ceilings. They rented out the west side of the home: to Ruthie Cryer’s brother, Elmer Cryer (before he became the Postmaster at Bartlett), Robert Guess (“R.G.”) & Ruby Sutton, and Erma Lee Cryer (Ruthie's younger sister). This was also the year that Glenn had diptheria; Dr. Hamblen actually said that he was dead. The doctor said that he thought Glenn got the diptheria from a cat. Glenn’s father hated cats from that point until the day that he died. About 1931, Aubrey and Glenn had their tonsils out at the same time at Kings Daughters hospital in Temple, Texas. It didn’t bother Glenn very much, but Aubrey was terribly sick. Glenn made fun of him. Just about the time Aubrey got well, Glenn got sick and had to stay in bed about a week longer than Aubrey. Aubrey enjoyed getting even in that particular situation.
In 1933, the big house in Holland that the Blairs had been living in burned down. All of their personal belongings were destroyed except for what they had on. Glenn said that H.O. had the house burned so that he could get money to leave Holland. His wife was in the hospital in Waco, Texas and the kids were sent to someone’s home to spend the night. (Glenn said they were on their way to Dennison when his mother got very sick in Waco. They stayed in a motel on the north side of Waco. She began feeling worse, so they took her to the hospital in Waco. She had surgery quickly for a bad female problem. She stayed in the hospital a long time). They had a new home built on the same lot; H.O. paid the carpenter who built the house $ 100.00 labor. Glenn’s uncle, Earl Blair, was living in Houston, Texas, so he came up and painted and papered the house; he lived in Holland, Texas. People came from miles around to see how Glenn’s mother washed clothes; she had a gas line running under her wash pot by which she could heat her water. Glenn thought the carpenter who built the house probably made it. This was also the year that Glenn’s parents, H.O. and Bertie Blair, separated. H.O. had an affair with a married woman in Bartlett and left his wife. He moved to East Texas to the town of Athens. Glenn said that his mother was a very good mother, but was not affectionate. He never remembered her hugging or kissing him. Glenn never blamed his father for having the affair, but did blame him for not taking care of his family. (Note: A relative said that Wallace Windham cheated H.O. Blair out of some farm land in Holland, Texas, but I’m not sure what year this happened). Glenn had the following memories of grammar school:
1. “One Christmas, when I was about nine or ten years old, I woke up and there was the fanciest, most beautiful bike you ever saw. It was for me from my dad. I went riding on the gravel roads in Holland, turned a 90 degree corner, and slid on some loose gravel. I came home all bloody and crying because my new bike was all scratched up. My mom had previously warned me to be careful and not to go fast on gravel. I was only worried about my bike.” Glenn said that his father was gone from their home for many years (Note: not sure if this referred to the time he received the bike or in general).
2. “Aubrey and I used to go perching. Sometimes we would go perching or set out trot lines with dad. One day, we went way north of town (about 3 miles), close to Mike Carlisle’s place. We got home after catching lots of perch, and took a bath. Mom had a fit because we had tons of ticks on us. She would use alcohol on them and then pull them off.”
3. “One day we (Aubrey, Glenn, Bertie Pearl “sis”) went perching at a creek north of town under an old bridge. It was a creek on the road between Holland and Belton; it was a small creek which barely ran, but it had a deep fishing hole in it. Gene Swan went along. He was kinda mean and was about Aubrey’s age. Sis was always wanting to tag along, so she came too. There were water mocassins down at the creek. Gene saw one so he got an old cane pole and slipped it under the snake. He threw it over his shoulder and the snake wrapped around Sis’s neck. That was the last time she ever went perching with us! You never heard so much hollaring in your whole life!”
4. “Our family owned a cow; we had an old garage behind the house. The chickens that we had would lay their eggs between the bales of hay in the barn. My job was to gather the eggs. One day, I reached down between two bales and accidentally grabbed a chicken snake who was eating the eggs. I put it down real quick!”
5. Glenn said that when he was growing up, there were only one or two kids who had a car in town. Everyone else rode donkeys, horses, or walked.
6. Glenn remembered going on hayrides in Holland when a child.
7. The first play that Glenn was in was “Humpty Dumpty”. He had a speaking part.
8. “About 1933 or 1934 (when I was 10 or 11), I saw my first airplane. It was a biplane with a twenty foot wingspan. It was wood framed, oiled cloth. It landed in Sumbera’s (spelling?) cotton patch, a couple of blocks away from our home in Holland, Texas. The pilot had run out of gas. It’s amazing how far things have come since then”. (Note: This story was shared in December, 1998).
9. “Aubrey was athletic and he was always giving me the business because I wasn’t. One day, as we came into our house, I was so mad I got the ice pick (which was always slid into the frame of the refrigerator) and I threw it at Aubrey. Luckily, it hit him in the butt and sank deep. Thank God it didn’t hit him somewhere else! I learned my lesson about anger very quickly.” (Note: Not sure what age Glenn was when this happened. Story was shared on November 24, 1999).
There was a time, when Glenn was a child, when his mother was sick in Waco. He remembers the family going to Waco to see her. He remembers going to the McNeeley home, which was located on the west side of old highway 81 in Troy, Texas. There was only one lady there named Molly or Maggie. There were no men around. (Note: year is unsure regarding this event).
Other memories of Glenn about his childhood:
1. Glenn said that at his 50th high school reunion in Holland, Texas Burdell Sinclair said, “You’re the one that proved that the answer in the back of the Math book was wrong.” Glenn did do this. Glenn said it was amazing what she remembered after all those years.
2. Glenn’s next door neighbor in high school was Opal Davis (Jeannine said the girl was “Opal Gray”) and her family. Glenn returned her late one night from a date and her dad (who was a gruff man who weighed about 300 pounds) stepped around the back of the house with a double barreled shotgun. Glenn said the barrels of that gun were huge ! From then on he got her home on time.
3. A group of kids in Holland were roller skating. Glenn was learning how to skate, so he was in the back of the line of kids, who were all holding hands and lined up behind each other. They were skating on the sidewalk around the corner of First National Bank; the curb and sidewalk were high off the street. The kids whipped Glenn around the corner real fast and he went flying off the curb, landing on his knees in the middle of the street.
4. One of Glenn’s best friends in Holland was Rex Williams. Rex would never consider doing anything that was wrong. He was the halfback on the Holland football team.
5. Mrs. Boo Gray was an old lady who lived across the street; she was terrified of storms. Whenever a small cloud would come up, she’d get Glenn’s mother (“little granny” or “Bert”) and the kids and go to “little granny’s” storm cellar. The cellar was made of concrete. It had vines growing on the outside and hanging on the inside. It had shelves on the inside filled with canned goods. Mrs. Gray’s home fell down a long time before 1953. Mrs. Gray knew that Glenn collected stamps and she would save all her letters and let Glenn steam them off. Glenn sold and traded 1 and 2 cent stamps with other kids.
6. Glenn and Esta (Esther?) Mae competed academically in high school. At their 54th high school reunion she said, “Glenn, I used to hate you cause you’ld always make better grades than me.” Glenn said that she was very smart.
7. Two or three times a year, Glenn would go to uncle Bill Swan’s home to work (pick cotton and bale hay). He would stay for 1-2 weeks at a time. Three or four couples of us would go sit under the pecan trees and eat peanut butter and banana sandwiches. We’d slice the bananas and put em on. We would also fish. (Note: Jeannine’s family would always mash the bananas up into the peanut butter. This is the way Billy Blair remembers his mother making the sandwiches when he was growing up). One day, the Swans caught some fish and I decided to eat some because the Swan boys were bragging about how good it was. After I took 3-4 bites, a lady asked me how I liked it. I said I thought it was good. She asked me if I knew what I was eating. I said, “fish”. She said, “eel”. Glenn said there were eels in the Little River. (Will & Pearl Swan and two other couples took Glenn to the Pecan trees by the Little river - across from the race track. It was on someone else’s property. This is where Glenn tried the fried eel. One person jokingly said, “When it cools off, it begins to wiggle again.” Glenn said that Will & Pearl Swan were a great influence on him growing up. Will was a nice man with a dry wit. He was a father figure to Glenn. Pearl was a grandmother type; she would do anything for you. She made very rich ice cream).
1935 was the year that Glenn graduated out of the sixth grade; at that time, they didn’t have junior high. One day, his class was practicing their songs for graduation. The music teacher said, “Someone sounds like a frog singing. Glenn, why don’t you just mouth the words and not sing.” From that time on, Glenn never sang a note. (Note: Later in life, the family suspected that Aubrey was the one who couldn’t sing. Glenn has a fine voice. Billy Blair overheard him singing “Jesus Loves Me” to Lauren Blair when she was a baby). H.O. Blair came in from east Texas for Glenn’s graduation. He took Glenn to Charlie Cox’s store in Temple and bought him a double-breasted blue/ gray pen striped suit. This was the first suit that he ever owned; Glenn was very proud of it. Felicia Jones was his arithmetic teacher at Holland; she had a great effect on his life. While in high school in Holland, Glenn raised a white pig. It weighed 300 pounds because they didn’t castrate it. Their family killed and ate this pig. Beginning in 1936, Glenn was on the debate team; the team came to Mary Hardin Baylor College in Belton for competition. MHB was an all-girls school at the time. The team was in two cars and they stopped in front of the dorm. The girls came poking their heads out of the windows and said, “Men!” They came running from all over the place to see these boys from Hicksville.
|1936: Bertie Pearl, Aubrey, Bertie Bell, and Glenn Blair (right)|
|Glenn Blair's high school graduation picture|
Glenn grew 8" between the tenth and eleventh grades. He was 5'2" tall when he finished the 10th grade and was 5' 10" tall after the 11th grade. He was a “string bean” and didn’t weigh much. H.O. Blair was in the trucking business working out of the Rio Grande Valley; he would come by about every six months and spend the night. H.O. would send Bertie $ 20.00 a month to raise the kids. They ate a lot of beans and cornbread. Glenn was valedictorian when he graduated from Holland high school. His graduation photo was a proof because his family couldn’t afford to buy the actual photos. Glenn’s graduation service was held at Holland High School on Friday, May 24, 1940 at 8 pm.
|GLENN BLAIR - U.T. SCHOLARSHIP CARD|
1940 - 1941
Glenn’s College Experience at the University of Texas in Austin:
|University of Texas, Austin campus, 1943|
|Glenn Blair, 1940-1941|
(YEARBOOK COVER PHOTOS) Glenn went to the University of Texas in Austin, Texas in the Fall of 1940; he majored in electrical engineering. Glenn said that he was a lost little kid in a big city.
|Glenn Blair at 1943 U.T. , Austin class registration|
(Glenn at front center looking at papers; girl looking towards him).
(Source: U.T. 1943 Yearbook "The Cactus")
Glenn stated that if they (Glenn & Bill Tarnower?) had a dime, they would go to a hamburger joint on “The drag” (Guadalupe street) and buy a full size hamburger.
1. Glenn remembered that one of the boys in his engineering group refused to do any work except to type the reports. All of the reports were late due to his typing. (INSERT EXAMPLE OF REPORT). The policy was that everyone got the same grade that was in the work group. Glenn said, “We didn’t kill him, but we should have.” (This boy was not the Winegarten boy).
Below are some of the drawings Glenn did for his engineering class in 1940:
2. Glenn got a job working in the university library for 75 cents per hour. Glenn got the job through the N.R.A. (National Recovery Act). 75 cents was big money at the time. Judge Mallory Blair, who was on the Court of State Appeals and also a relative, helped Glenn get the job. He worked twenty hours a week and held the job for 2-3 years. (PHOTO OF INSIDE OF LIBRARY & PHOTO OF INSIDE OF LIBRARY BOOK) To qualify to work in the U.T. library, Mrs. Baker had a test for 10-12 students. Glenn and one other boy made exactly the same grade and made the same mistakes. Mrs. Baker thought they had cheated until she saw they sat completely across the room from each other.
3. Glenn talked about Winegarten being one of his “poker playing buddies”. He said that the boy came from a wealthy family and he had one of about ten cars were on the U.T. campus. His car was an old one which he drove when he had to. He could have afforded ten new cars if he wanted them. Glenn admired the fact that he didn’t flaunt his wealth. Winegarten was short and chunky and was on the U.T. track team. He won tons of races with those short, fat legs. Later, he became in charge of the whole Winegarten company in the Houston area.
4. Glenn remembered the fierce competition between Texas and Texas A & M at baseball games when he was at U.T. A hog wire fence was put up to the roof of the field so that students couldn’t throw fruit and vegetables across the field towards the fans of the other team (tomatoes, apples, and oranges). About knee high, there was a gap before the wire started. (INSERT DRAWING). A & M fans sat on the first base side and U.T. fans sat on the third base line. At one game, a few of the players stopped to look because so many oranges were being thrown across the field.
5. Glenn’s other girlfriends included: (INSERT PHOTOS & LETTERS).
1. Mary Ruth Brockette: 1939-1940 at Summer’s Mill in Bell county, Texas.
2. Mozelle Reed: 1940 in Holland, Texas.
3. Barbara Van Zant (“Babs”): March 4, 1942 and April 22, 1942. Ft. Worth. When in the trucking business, H.O. Blair met her and her mother at Carlsbad, New Mexico. Glenn went to Ft. Worth to see her. Mrs. Van Zant, from Ft. Worth, wanted Glenn to marry her daughter. She told Glenn that he would inherit all her money, that she would buy them a home in Austin, and that he could continue his education. Glenn wrote her the next day and broke off their relationship. (Hazel Van Zandt - was this Barbara Van Zant’s mother?). Glenn stated on Dec. 29, 2001 that Barbara’s mother sent her to Austin to see him. Glenn found out years later that his dad dated her mother at the same time. Barbara’s mother lived near Will Rogers Collesium in Ft. Worth, Texas.
4. Dolores Merton: 1943-1945 Tyler, Texas. (Same as Sylvia Merton photo from Tyler 1942-43?).
5. Mary Lou Cheatham: 1943 in Moody, Texas.
6. Mary Anne LeBlanc: (cousin?). April 7, 1943. U.T. and Ft. Worth, Texas.
7. Joyce Bean: girlfriend from Rogers, Texas in 1943.
8. Edna Jean Hanna (“Jean”): (1944 to 1946). June 7-8, 1945. Goose Creek, Tx. 1944; Baytown, Tx. U.T. Ft. Worth in 1946. (Note: According to Jeannine Blair, Jean Hanna was a very serious girlfriend). Jean’s folks lived around Bay City, Texas.
9. Unidentified photo of a girlfriend from Southwestern University in 1944.
10. Dottie Parish: April, 1945.
11. Dorothy Brumfield: 1945-1946 in Cleburne, Texas.
12. Alleen (Alline) Gillespie: May 23, 1946. Denton, Tx. 1945-46. While Glenn was at Consolidated-Vultee in Ft. Worth and T.S.C.W. in Denton, Texas.
13. Dorothy Wallace: Holland, Texas in the late 1930's.
14. Doris & Eleanor: “A couple of bats I knew in Houston”. 1944.
15. Helen Fender: Girlfriend from University of Texas, 1942.
16. Opal Davis: Holland, Texas high school graduation photo, 1941. (Note: This photo was in same group as girlfriend photos. Don’t know if she was just a friend/ classmate or a girlfriend).
6. Glenn had a “The Curtain Club” season ticket for 1940-41. He also had a Student Athletic Season ticket # 4620 (with photo) from the U.T. Athletic Council.
| U.T. Student Athletic Season Ticket|
7. Glenn had a Texas vs. Texas A & M Homecoming football ticket dated Thursday, November 28, 1940 at 2:30 pm. Section 37, Row 6, Seat 18 ( below). He wrote in pencil on the ticket: “Texas: 7; A & M: 0".
8. A note Glenn wrote on the back of an envelope: “Mike Flynn - shot down in World War II. Marine pilot. Very special friend.”
9. When Glenn was in college, he didn’t attend church anywhere.
10. Glenn had an old Indian blanket that he used all the time while at U.T. Jeanine later told her son Billy that a lot of the students had them.
|Glenn Blair's Indian blanket. 5 1/2 ' square. Photo taken on July 21, 2005|
11. Glenn smoked a pipe in college because it was “cool”. He had two or three pipes; one of them had a curved stem and one of them was straight. He also had a solid silver belt buckle.
|Glenn Blair (smoking a cigarette) and his daughter, Jeannie.|
Glenn also smoked cigarettes until research determined that they caused cancer. He gave them up “cold turkey” and threw the cigarette pack in the trash about the mid 1950's. Jeannine (Digby) Blair said he had to chew gum like crazy for about 3 ½ weeks until the craving for cigarettes went away.
12. When Glenn was attending U.T., he found out that his father was in the hospital in Temple, Texas undergoing gall bladder surgery. He found this out through a Holland, Texas football player, who was in Austin to play a game. Glenn hitched a ride back on the Holland Band bus following the game. He had to walk his date for the game across town back to her home first. He rode the band bus to Taylor, then hitched a ride to Temple to the hospital.
13. Glenn would hitchhike several times to get back home to Holland, Texas. Most of the people who would pick you up were drunks. One time, Glenn was riding with a drunk guy, so he told the guy that he lived in Salado just so he could get out of the car. Then Glenn called a one armed teacher of his named Mauriene Taylor and asked if she could pick him up and take him home. It was snowing at the time, but she never hesitated. She immediately went and got him. Glenn still holds a deep appreciation for this kindness. Mauriene and Glenn would play tennis together.
14. Glenn said his parents never wrote him a letter while he was in college. His father came to see him briefly ((5-10 minutes per time) towards the end of his college career. This happened when his dad, H.O. Blair, was in the trucking business. On his way back from hauling fruit from the Rio Grande Valley, he would pull his truck in the alley behind the boarding house where Glenn was staying.
15. Glenn went to the University of Texas because it was a good school for engineering and Glenn’s major was electrical engineering. His U.T. Engineering Lab book in 1943 listed his lab group partners:
July 13, 1943: Culbertson; Neisingh; Blair; Weingarten (Electrical Engineering 421A class).
August 9, 1943: Carleton; Mollenhauer; Pruett; Blair
September 13, 1943: Wilson; Kenyan; Blair.
Glenn's Electrical Engineering Lab. books had pages with Glenn's electrical drawings on one side of the page and the drawings Steve Blair (Bertie Pearl Blair's son) drew as a child on the other side of the page. Glenn told his son Billy that his parents didn't have extra blank paper lying around the house, so they let Steve use his Lab. books for his art work. (Note: Insert photos of these pages).
16. Glenn hitchhiked in college, but quit when he got a ride from a very drunk person that scared him to death.
17. Glenn danced a little in college.
Glenn lived at Ma Thigpen’s Boarding House, which was located one block west of campus, at the intersection of 24th street and San Antonio street (one block west of Guadalupe street “the drag”):
Memories of Ma Thigpen’s Boarding House:
During World War II, many of the on-campus men’s houses closed down or were converted to women’s houses. Many co-ops moved off campus and leased large houses from private landlords. University expansion and market pressures forced co-ops to move from rented house to rented house.
|Location of MaThigpen's Boarding House|
University of Texas, Austin, Texas
(Source: Billy & Susan Blair visit to area, June 5, 2005; Billy drew map)
According to Glenn, Ma Thigpen was a big, elderly lady. She weighed over 200 pounds and was over six feet tall. She was about 60-70 years old. She and her husband “Paw” had one son who was finished with schooling. Their son was married and had a child in his teens. The boarding house was a two story home with a two story garage apartment. This boarding house was located one block west of the U.T. campus. Glenn remembers this place for its good cooking. The first year he was in school, he had the best room in the house. Glenn had three meals a day, rent was $25.00 a month, and he had maid service. His roommate throughout college was Bill Tarnower; who later became a doctor with the Veteran’s Administration Hospital (“V.A.”). After Glenn’s first year in college,
$ 25.00 proved to be too much money, so he and Bill Tarnower moved into the garage apartment. It was in the back yard of the boarding house and cost only $ 20.00 per month (3 meals a day plus cleaning). (INSERT DRAWING OF HOME).
1. One of the boys who lived in the boarding house was Jim Kishe (pronounced Key-she; not sure of proper spelling). He was a big, nice Japanese guy. He would come into Glenn and Bill Tarnower’s room, which was the room on the first floor next to the front door. The room had solid wood floors and no rugs. It also had two solid oak chairs. Glenn and Bill would turn one of the chairs backwards and then hold it up. Jim would run full speed and hit the chair with his bare shoulder. He was a powerful man, but he never broke the chair. There was a fear at the time of Japan invading the United States through California. Jim’s parents were put into a detention camp. Jim quit school in order to find them and Glenn never heard from him again.
2. Two of the guys who lived in Ma’s garage apartments were: (1) Jerry Owens (who was a halfback on the football team) and (2) “Barefoot” Sanders (He was a future politician. He was a longtime U.S. District Judge and a counsel to President Lyndon B. Johnson. He was best known for overseeing the lawsuit to desegregate the Dallas ISD. He died on September 21, 2008 in Dallas).
(Source of image: University of Texas Yearbook)
3. Glenn said that Ben Jordan also lived at the boarding house. He was a big guy (not fat) and over six feet tall. The girls all loved him; he was a nice guy. Ben later became the mayor of Victoria, Texas and a prominent lawyer. A highway around the town was named for him. He was confined to a wheelchair. Ben became almost paranoid over global warming issues and was close to being placed in a mental hospital.
4. In a letter dated March 8, 1947 to Glenn from Bill Tarnower (INSERT LETTER), he stated that Ma Thigpen was no longer serving meals due to tomaine poisoning around the area. Glenn never knew if Ma’s cooking was the source of the poisoning. There was tomaine poisoning in the area and Ma was suspected of causing it. Glenn doubted that Ma was responsible because she was such a great cook. He also listed boys that were probably residents of the boarding house: Dan Hodges, Byron Clark, Bill Alexander, Scottie (of Scottie and Huddleston fame); these guys were rooming again at 2306. Bill also mentioned the following people in his letter: Mo , Ben Jorden, Roy and Ethyl Thigpen and their baby girl, Erple, and Raymond.
5. Glenn said one of the greatest lessons he learned at U.T. was not to drink alcohol. As a sophmore, people would call him from bars and tell him that a certain student was drunk and had said they could trust Glenn to take them home. He would go pick them up and they would have thrown up all over themselves. Cleaning up and sobering up the guys who lived at Ma Thigpen’s Boarding House convinced Glenn not to drink too much.
Glenn attended U.T. for four years, but didn’t get a degree due to his going to work at Consolidated-Vultee Aircraft in Ft. Worth during World War II. Glenn said that it was difficult being at U.T. during World War II if you couldn’t serve in the military since so many of the boys were in the military. The boys not serving were outwardly hated by others. The one advantage of this, however, was that girls tried to latch onto the boys who were left behind for husband material.
|Glenn Blair U.T. Transcript, page 1|
|Glenn Blair U.T. Transcript, page 2|
Glenn related the following story about U.T.: He and his father, H.O. Blair, went to a Rice vs. U.T. football game in Houston. They had lunch at a nice seafood place. Glenn ordered sweet milk with his seafood. H.O. warned him about tomaine poisoning. Later, Glenn began vomiting severely on a grassy area at the stadium. H.O. couldn’t find anyone that would help. People just thought Glenn’s vomiting had been caused by drinking.
In 1941, H.O. Blair, Glenn, and Aubrey were in Yosemite National Forest.
|1941: Glenn Blair & friend at Yosemite National Park|
|Aubrey & Glenn at Yosemite|
Consolidated-Vultee Aircraft Memories:
|Consolidated-Vultee plant in Fort Worth during World War II.|
In 1944, Glenn went to work in his first job after college for the engineering department of Consolidated-Vultee Aircraft in Ft. Worth, Texas (now General Dynamics). They were the largest manufacturers of bombs in the United States during World War II. Glenn worked as an electrical engineer on the B-36 bomber; his salary was $ 1.15 per day. The men on the assembly line actually building the bombers were lucky to make 75-80 cents per day. When Glenn was in Ft. Worth living at the downtown Y.M.C.A., he would cash his paychecks from Consolidated-Vultee at a big, locally owned store near the Y.M.C.A. (When Susan Blair mentioned Leonards Department Store as a possibility, Glenn said that was probably the store). Views of Fort Worth about the time Glenn lived there:
|7th looking east. 1940s|
|Main looking north. 1946|
|Main from 9th. 1940s|
Glenn worked at Consolidated-Vultee for about eighteen months. Glenn’s desire was to be a navigator. He took a special class in crypto-analysis/ decoder for World War II. He passed the class, but failed the physical due to a bad ear, bad eye, and problems with depth perception.
|A & M classes while at Consolidated-Vultee|
|A & M classes while at Consolidated-Vultee|
Notes on the B-36 bomber: The first flight of the B-36A was on August 28, 1947. It was ordered into production in Ft. Worth in 1948. Through 1954, a total of 285 planes were built. The B-36 could carry
72, 000 pounds of bombs. It had a sixteen person crew and two pressurized compartments. The B-36 could fly 12, 000 mile long missions. The contract for building this bomber was not done until the war was over. “On March 17, 1943, Consolidated and Vultee officially merged, creating Consolidated Vultee Aircraft Corporation, popularly known as Convair. The Vultee management resigned and Victor Emanuel of AVCO, who controlled the company, hired Tom Girdler as chairman, Harry Woodhead as President, and I.M. Laddon as Executive Vice President and General Manager”. (Source: U.S. Centennial of Flight Commission article on Consolidated Vultee Aircraft Corporation).
The following are U-Tube videos related to the B-36 bomber:
1. Glenn said there was a man named Andrew (he thinks) who brought two other men with him. They were leaders in their department and had come to ask Glenn why he didn’t just bypass the person above him and just send his drawings to be copied for the line departments. At Consolidated, they had girls/ women whose only job was to make about 50 copies of the drawings. This pleased Glenn that leaders in the company valued his work so highly.
2. Glenn came to Consolidated when they were finishing up the B-24 bomber (“Flying Boxcars”). They then began the B-34's - This was the plane that was on the assembly line when he was working there. Glenn worked on one model in the corner of the same building as the assembly line.
3. "We worked a 48 hour work week. We received “time and a half” for eight of those hours".
4. Glenn would carpool with other guys to work. One day, one of them looked out the car window and said, “Look guys, that plane has no pilot!” They all stared out the windows and, sure enough, there was no pilot. They found out later that it was the first test of a remote-controlled aircraft at Consolidated.
5. As workers at Consolidated were trying to perfect the B-36 fuel tank, they would put the currently designed tank on the runway and shoot tracer bullets at it. If the design was flawed, the tank would explode. Glenn remembered several times hearing the tank explode on the way to work and the guys would say, “Well, back to the drawing board.”
6. Glenn stated that as he was being escorted into the building at his new job, they passed through the computer room. He said there was one computer in the large room that went from floor to ceiling all the way around the room. He also said that the computer was incredibly loud.
H.O. Blair got in bad health in the Fall of 1945; he got Glenn to quit work and go to work for him in the trucking business. Aubrey had been working for H.O. before Glenn came. When Glenn came to work for H.O., they moved to Temple, Texas and lived there a couple of months. (Note: On May 17, 1949, Ft. Worth received 11" of rain, causing the Trinity river to flood on the near west side. Ten people were killed and there was over one million dollars damage in Ft Worth).
Memories of the Trucking Business:
|K-8 & Frulhairf Refrigerator Van at fruit shed, 1946|
|International truck Aubrey Blair drove - at Holland, Tx.|
1. Glenn was in the Lubbock, Texas area on a truck trip once. A tornado hit the town just after Glenn had stayed there.
2. Harry Stewart was one of the regular drivers who drove the trucks with H.O. and Glenn. He also worked at the gas station at Hill Top Courts. H.O. regularly drove the trucks and Glenn would occasionally drive. Jim Ponder and Louis Estell also occasionally drove the trucks.
3. “I got a broken ankle from tightening lug bolts on a changed tire when I was driving an 18 wheeler on a trip from San Antonio to San Marcos. This was after I was married to Jeannine. The accident happened in San Antonio; the lug wrench came off and I tumbled backwards. I kept driving to San Marcos and then called my dad. He and Billy Ed Wilson came up to get me; Billy Ed drove the truck back. I got the cast on my ankle probably at Dr. Kirkley’s office in Belton.”
4. H.O., Glenn, and Aubrey Blair worked for A & P grocery stores; they bought fruit and vegetables and sold them to individual stores. There were two bad freezes in the Rio Grande Valley, so the
A & P stores wanted them to start hauling fruit/ vegetables out of Florida. They didn’t want to go that far, so, in 1950, they quit the trucking business. They gradually sold their trucks to their drivers. The number of trucks they had varied, but at one time, they had up to five trucks. They would hire local truckers during the busy season around Christmas; twelve trucks is the most that they ever handled.
5. One time, Glenn was driving one of the trucks through the “drag” (Guadalupe street) in Austin, close to the University of Texas campus and a large hailstone smashed the front window of the truck.
6. Glenn’s truck route to the Rio Grande Valley was to go from San Antonio to Three Rivers, then through Alice to the Valley. Jeannine made four or five trips with Glenn in his truck before their first daughter, Jeannie, was born. On one of these trips, there was the worst fog they ever saw. Glenn had a spotlight on the truck so that they could direct it for clearer vision. The fog was so bad that they had to shine the light on the white stripe in the middle of the road. Jeannine took one trip to San Antonio with Glenn to get watermelons. He went to the valley more than once to get watermelons. One of the trips was after Jeannie’s birth. Glenn had been gone for two weeks delivering black eyed peas. Pearl and Mart Digby kept Jeannie so that Jeannine could go with Glenn.
7. H.O. Blair was driving a truck and Glenn was with him. An old man pulled out in front of them in a pickup truck. H.O. said, ‘That’s the end of your life, old man.’ Just then, a little boy’s head popped up inside the truck. H.O. used all his might and finally got the truck stopped in time. This happened prior to Glenn’s marriage.
8. Billy Ed Wilson used to work on H.O. Blair’s trucks. He would tinker around with them until midnight or even 2-3 am, but would always have them working before they were needed for the trips to the Rio Grande Valley to get fruit. The trucks would only go about 55 mph back then. Because of this, the trip was not made in one day. They would go down one day, spend the night, and drive back the next day. H.O. would tell Arthur Wallace, “I’ve got some crates of oranges. If you come by, I’ll give you two or three.”
9. Dick Jackson was a friend of Glenn’s who drove a truck. Jeannine Blair didn’t remember if it was one of Glenn’s trucks that he drove or not.
Herbert Orlando Blair married Loraine (Digby) Jones in 1946; he had known her a long time before he moved to Temple. Loraine (“Lottie” or “Aunt Lote”) used to live in Holland, Texas with Payne and Ted Mills when she was young. Loraine lived in Belton, Texas and ran an ice cream parlor across the street from Cochran, Blair, and Potts department store on Central Avenue. (Mary Blair Farris thinks that Glenn met aunt Merle when he was staying with aunt Lote (Loraine) one time). H.O. moved to Temple because of Loraine. (H.O.’s headquarters were in Tyler, Texas for about thirty years. Glenn believes that H.O. was born around Rogers, Texas). H.O. and Loraine got an apartment in a big two-story house that Emmitt Digby owned on 10th and Penelope streets (Fain Waggoner’s home). One day, Glenn was outside, and, in his words, “along came a cute-looking chick in tight blue jeans. This was the first time I met your mother.” (Note: Mom always stressed the point that they weren’t tight). Wanda Jeannine Digby was kinfolks, and she was over there one day with Mattie, Mart, Pearl, and all the others. Jeannine said, “The first time I saw your dad, he had on khakis.”
Jeannine Blair’s comment on June 3, 2005 about how she met Glenn:
Jeannine met Glenn in the summer (May/ June) of 1946. She was 15 years old at the time. Jeannine’s family lived in the house on Highway 190 at this time. Jeannine was spending the night with Lyndell and Merle (This was in a small house on the east side of Emmitt Digby’s two story house. Both houses were probably original to the owner of the property). Glenn was spending the night with H.O. Blair and his wife Loraine; Glenn had a bed under the stairwell. Glenn and H.O. usually left on Sunday pm for their truck trips to the Rio Grande Valley; this is the reason Glenn stayed with H.O. and Loraine. (H.O. and Loraine rented a downstairs apartment in Emmitt’s two story house. The house was located on Penelope street between 9th and 10th streets. It was across the street and about ½ block north of where Mike Cantrell’s rock house was when he was in high school. There was a porch on the front and side of Emmitt’s house; you could enter from either side. The house eventually burned to the ground). Glenn was walking back from town after getting a newspaper. He had on khaki pants and a khaki shirt. This was the first time Jeannine ever saw Glenn. They played rummy the first time they met. Gale (Digby) Cosper and Jeannine thought it funny that cousins, who were both sisters, were present when they both met their future husbands. Betty Jean Cosper was there when Joe and Gale met and Lyndell Cosper was there when Glenn and Jeannine met.
Jeannine’s father, Mart Digby, and Emmitt Digby were in the car business together (on the southeast corner of 2nd and Penelope streets; across from the Quality Discount; where the bank is now). Glenn bought a “top of the line” 1946 maroon Ford; he paid $ 1, 576.00 for it in Temple, Texas. People couldn’t afford these cars because they were charging twice as much. No cars were made for a long time because the metal was going toward the war effort. Dwayne Digby said that the car had a dimmer switch on the floor to adjust the lights, but he was impressed that it also had a dimmer switch on the floor that changed the radio stations.
Emmitt Digby always had a lot of ideas. They decided to put in a watermelon place at their car lot. The Blairs hauled watermelons for the Digbys. The watermelon booth was located on the lot where the First National Bank is now. Glenn had wanted to build a new bank on this lot for years. Glenn and Jeannine did some of their “courting” here. The booth had long tables with attached benches. When the Blairs would haul in the truckloads of watermelons, they would sell them to people by the slice or half slice. Glenn dated “aunt Doris” sometimes because Jeannine was too young; he began dating Jeannine in the summer of 1946. Sometimes when Glenn took Doris out and Jeannine questioned him about it, Glenn would reply, “Your dad wouldn’t let you go.” Jeannine and Doris lived close to each other; they would run over to the other’s house and compare notes after Glenn had dropped one of them off from a date.
Jeannine remembered “When Glenn and I were dating, my folks lived on the Ft. Hood highway. There was an upstairs apartment and a narrow staircase. I was very naive and asked Glenn to come up and see our bedroom. He did, but he told me to ‘keep the door open’ “. When Glenn and Jeannine were dating, Glenn had a terrible ear infection. He had a mastoidectomy. The doctor had to remove part of the bone in his ear to get the infection out. It drained for a long time. Glenn had to change the cotton balls in his ear constantly. Sometimes it would smell really bad and would be a very embarressing situation for him. Glenn recalled the following: “When Jeannine and I were dating, we were at her parent’s home one day. I was shooting my .22 automatic rifle at some bark on a tree and was bragging about it some, I’m sure. Your mother started giving me the business about it, so I said, ‘OK, let’s see how well you shoot. I’ll put a match in this tree and you see if you can light it up with a shot. Strike it and make it flare up.’ She picked up the gun and lit it up with the first shot!” (Note: Glenn told me he thought she was about 40 feet away from the match when she shot. He also said when she lit it up, he got in his car and left). Glenn Blair's .22 automatic rifle (photos by Billy Blair in 2005):
Glenn, Jeannine, Mattie, and Lyndell would all go out together. One day, when they had Mattie (age 13), they went to the canteen (a “hang out” place for kids which was located on the second floor of the public library, which is now the Bell County Museum). Glenn and Jeannine left Mattie there, went out, and when they returned, she was gone. Glenn took Jeannine back home in time for her curfew; her parents were asleep. He went back and found Mattie at the canteen. He snuck her in through the bedroom window which faced the front porch; this was at the home on Nolanville road. The first page of Jeannine Digby’s diary says:
“met Glenn - June 2, 1946
first date - June 16, 1946
Proposed to me - July 9, 1946
1st kiss - July 18, 1946"
A note in the diary on December 31, 1946 gives Jeannine’s description of Glenn: “Glenn Blair - My whole life and only love. Glenn - dark brown hair, fair complexion - green eyes - 6 ft. tall - 155 lbs. Nice looking - loads of fun so very sweet & wonderful.”
In August, 1946, Glenn and Jeannine took a trip to Galveston, Texas. They went to Calsbad Caverns, New Mexico prior to the Galveston trip.
Jeannine Digby (life before marriage):
|Jeannine Blair birth certificate|
|1931 Calendar, year of Jeannie's birth|
|Jeannine Digby birth certificate|
Jeannine was born on Thursday, January 22, 1931 at 2:45 am (birth certificate says 2:30 am) at her parent’s home in Belton, Texas (the historic Beamer-Jones home); her parents are Martin Van(n) Digby (“Mart”) and Pearl (Griffin ) Digby. Many years later, Jeannine would serve as a hostess at the Beamer home at the grand opening of its rennovation.
|Side view of the historic Beamer/ Jones home where|
Wanda Jeannine Digby was born. (View is SE to NW).
|Front of historic Beamer/ Jones home|
where Wanda Jeannine Digby was born.
(View is NW to SE).
The doctor was Dr. William M. Gambrell; the nurse was Miss Street. Jeannine weighed 5 ½ pounds at birth.
|Wanda Jeannine Digby|
The following information comes from Jeannine’s baby book:
A. 1 month: 9 ½ lbs.
B. 2 months: 10 ½ lbs.
C. 3 months: 12 ½ lbs.
D. 6 months: 18 ½ lbs.
E. 1 year: 23 lbs.
A. 1 year: 28"
B. 2 years: 33"
A. 6 months old: first tooth.
B. 8 ½ months old: 3 little teeth.
C. 1 year: 6 teeth.
D. 2 years: 16 teeth. The two lower front teeth are slightly croweded, causing them to grow crooked.
4. First steps: “Baby took her first little steps for uncle Emmitt when she was 11 ½ months old. She is walking about the house now pretty good at 12 months. She gets lots of falls, but will just get up and all the other folk think she looks terribly sweet totterin over the floor from one play thing to another.”
5. First Words: “At 12 months, baby can say several words. ‘Mama”, “Daddy’, ‘chicken’, ‘kitty’, and aunt Jewell taught her to call mother ‘Pearl’. She can go like the old cow and the donkey. When she sees a cow, she says, ‘moo’.”
6. First trip: At 10 months old, baby and mom went to Brownwood and spent a whole week with aunt Merle and uncle Leonard Cosper.
7. First sayings:
A. “Big bean says ‘somebody been eatin my toup.’”
B. “Daddy as one me?”
C. “Daddy dot boots, Emmet dot boots, Ata dot boots, Nannine dot boots too.”
D. “Over ook don’t !” (Meaning “Even you don’t bite my foot and socks”).
E. “Ook ittle angel”. (“You little angel”).
|Jeannine Digby - Cradle Roll Certificate, First Christian Church, Belton, Tx.|
Jeannine Digby was two years old before her hair began growing. All of the Digby children grew hair slowly. Jeannine's sister Mattie's son, David Wesson, was the first child to have hair.
8. First Christmas: Baby and parents went to grandmother and grandad Griffin’s Christmas Eve night and stayed all Christmas Day. Aunt Ivy, Edith Lynn, Bernice Lee, and Uncle Len were there. Christmas morning, all the children had something nice in their stocking. Baby had a big teddy bear, a rubber mouse that sqeaks, and fruit. When they got home on Christmas night, there were pretty things on a Christmas tree at grandmother Digby’s. We all went over to uncle Em’s Christmas night to a musical. Baby enjoyed it.
|Wanda Jeannine Digby and her little puppy.|
When Jeannine was a toddler and attending First Christian Church in Belton with her parents, she would try to go up 2-3 of the steps to the balcony in the sanctuary and her dad would have to chase her. At this time, the auditorium in the church was like it was during the 1800s when it was an opera house. The auditorium was round with a balcony all the way around it with a beautiful bannister (Source: Pearl Digby).
|Jeannine's Church Promotion Card|
|Jeannine's Church Promotion Card|
|Wanda Jeannine Digby|
Dwayne Digby told the story about how some of the relatives would kid around and call Johnnie Elsik a "fat-headed Bohemian". One day Jewell (Griffin) Elsik and her husband Johnnie came down to visit. Johnnie went up to Jeannine and said, "Give me a hug!" Jeannine, repeating what she had heard others saying, said, "No, you're just a fat-headed Bohemian". Jewell, when hearing the relative's comments, made matters worse by saying, "He's as good as any white man!" Everyone had a good laugh, then went on with their visit.
(Jeannine said she went to school in Belton, then Amity school, then Salado school, then Belton).
1st grade: Tarver school on the south side of town (Belton). Jeannine said that her family must have lived around Main street at the time for her to be able to go to this school.
2nd grade (1938-39): Tarver school. The teacher was Virginia B.Smith. Jeannine was 50-51" tall and varied in weight from 72-76 pounds.
3rd grade (1939-40): Tarver school. Her teacher was V. McMurray. Jeannine weighed 78-83 pounds and was 52-53" tall. (Jeannine thinks they only had grades 1 through 3 at Tarver and the 3rd grade was on the top floor.
|1941 Tyler Elementary School Picture.|
Jeannine Digby on second row from front; 3rd person from right (dark dress; white collar)
(Image supplied by Frances Barkley Willess, who is in front of Jeannine Digby in dark dress).
|ID for above photgraph from Frances Barkley Willess in 4th grade.|
|Wanda Jeannine Digby|
1. Belton Elementary. Her teacher was M.O. Biggs. Jeannine weighed 102-108 pounds.
2. (1941-42): Tyler school on East Avenue G in Belton. Her teacher was Cornelia Douglass. The principal was Lucile Morgan.
3. Amity School. A writing assignment done by Jeannine on March 16, 1942 lists the school as Amity and the teacher’s name as Ward (;last name?). May 8, 1942 - Pennmanship Progress certificate. Melba Ford was the teacher. The supervisor was R.E.L. Jones.
(Note: Jeannine stated that she remembers being in the 6th grade at Tyler elementary. She guessed that she went to the Amity school when their family lived in the house on Hwy. 81, which is now Interstate highway 35. On June 3, 2005, Jeannine said that she went to Amity School in the 5th grade. It was a two-room schoolhouse. Mattie and Jeannine were in the same classroom at one point. In June, 2007, Mattie (Digby) Wesson stated: “There were two school rooms at Amity school. Grades 1-3 were in one room and grades 4-6 in the other. We got coal from the coal shed and made a fire in the old stove. All the kids huddled around it until they were warm, then they began school”. Jeannine spent a half year in the 7th grade at Salado school. She also spent a half year in Belton school when her family moved back to Belton. Jeannine said that Mattie helped her figure out why she was in three schools in one year).
(Note: On 7-19-05, Jeannine stated that Edith Erickson was her 6th grade teacher. Edith later married Flint Porter).
Jeannine made the following comment about her name: “I went by ‘Jeannine’ until I went to Elementary school at Amity school. Lyndell Cosper went to Amity school and told her friends that her cousins were coming to school there. When the Amity teacher asked me what I wanted to be called, I said, ‘Could you please call me Wanda?’ I went by ‘Wanda’ while at Amity and later, Salado schools. My family then moved back to Belton and I went back to using ‘Jeannine’."
8th grade (1943-44): Belton Elementary. The teacher was Mrs. Edwin Cline.
|Wanda Jeannine Digby|
Jeannine (“Wanda” at the time of her baptism) was baptized at First Christian Church in Belton, Texas by Powell A. Smith on April 28, 1946.
|Jeannine Digby Baptism Information from First Christian Church, Belton, Texas|
Houses where Jeannine Digby lived prior to her marriage to Glenn Blair:
a. Historic Beamer-Jones house in Belton: Jeannine was born here. Her parent’s apartment was on the southeast side of the house. Lucille Durham’s sister lived on the other side. No one lived upstairs. This house is located just north of the Miller Heights grocery store on the southeast side of Belton.
b. Anderson Ray’s house (He was Alta Ray’s father. Alta was Emmitt Digby’s second wife; her second husband was a Mr. Lucas): This house was across from Johnny Mellon’s home on Avenue E (the Miller Heights area). (Another note says the house was by a tree in the road on Avenue J near the intersection of Walker street). Emmitt and Alta (Ray) Digby owned the home. Jeannine’s family lived here twice when she was young (between the ages of 4 - 6 and at age 6). It later burned down. Everyone called the Miller Heights area “Hungry Hill”.
c. South Main street: where the first Chicken eating place was located.
d. Hwy.190: Rock house with hen houses. Jeannine said this house had bedbugs when she was a child and Gale was a small child. Their mother Pearl would give Jeannine and the kids a paint brush and a small can with kerosene in it. The kids would use that to paint the legs of the beds every once in a while to keep the bedbugs off.
e. Hwy. 190: where Jeannine was a teenager.
f. Leonard and Merle Digby’s home (the house with the turtle racing track).
g. House at Amity: went to Amity schoolhouse until the 6th grade, then Salado school. (House on Hwy. 81, now Hwy. 35).
h. North Pearl street: East side of the street not far from the Baptist church. A little further up. Cody and Odell Hyer & Loraine and kids lived with them.
Jeannine’s best friends in school (Sophmore/ Junior years at least) were: (NOTE: Need photos)
1. Gloria June Cassil (“Gloria”).
2. Helen Reedy
3. Nellie Hemphill. She was not as close a friend as the other two. Her father owned the first golf course in Belton out on Highway 190. Nellie married Ben Chandler, who was a golf pro. He was on the tour for a while, but then had a stroke. They had several children.
|Belton High School when Jeannine Blair attended.|
1. When Jeannine was a toddler, age 2 or 3, she was putting little baby chickens in a little red wagon. They kept jumping out. She got frustrated, so she pulled their heads off.
2. When Jeannine was a young girl, she was ironing a shark skin skirt for the July 4th parade during World War II. When she lifted the iron, there was a hole in the skirt. It was ruined. Jeannine and her mother were both upset because life was tough during war time. (Another version of same story: “My mother made me a skirt to wear on July 4th during the war. Some water spilled on it, so I put the iron on it to dry it out. It burned the skirt.”).
3. When Jeannine Digby was a young girl, ages 4-6, her family lived in Alta Ray’s home east of the historic Beamer/ Jones home on “hungry hill” on the south end of Belton. Emmitt Digby and his wife Alta Ray (Digby) owned the home, which was directly south of the tree in the middle of the road. Johnny Melon lived directly across from them, on the north side of the street. He gave Jeannine the nickname of “nee nee”. Jeannine says she remembers playing with paper dolls Emmitt and Alta’s house. Jeannine’s family lived here twice (both times were between her ages of 4-6). The house eventually burned down.
4. “For Roundtable (at church), sometime after 1971, I was making some punch for someone’s birthday party. I poured pineapple juice in it. I noticed that it tasted terrible and had an oily film on top. I never could get it to taste sweet enough. I took it anyway. I also had a pint of chicken broth in the cabinet. I had mistakenly poured the broth in instead of the pineapple juice.”
5. “I had some kind of bee go up my pants leg while playing golf at Leon Valley Golf Course in Belton, Texas. I almost came out of those pants. I got stung several times, but finally was able to kill it.”
6. “The first dress I made Jeannie was a yellow dress. She didn’t like it, so she tore it up. This happened when Jeannie was a little kid.”
7. Some of Jeannine’s memories of her daughter Jeannie’s childhood:
a. Jeannie volunteered to make a model kayak out of plaster of paris. She was always volunteering for projects.
b. There was a project at Jeannie’s school to raise ants on an ant farm. Jeannie had to do something with the soil the ants were in and it was raining outside. We dumped the ants and soil on the living room floor. We were chasing ants everywhere.
8. Jeannine said they used to make homemade ice cream in ice trays before there were ice cream freezers. She would put the mix in the ice trays and then have to take it in/ out several times to stir it.
9. Jeannine said she enjoyed pitching in softball during recess and that she was pretty good, but that she wasn’t good at basketball in school.
10. Jeannine got her first kiss at a school party at Salado school. It was from a curly headed boy named Buddy Stanford. It wasn’t much of a kiss. They didn’t go to the party together.
11. After Jeannine and Glenn were married, there was a man who owed Glenn money and couldn’t pay it, so he gave Glenn a one bedroom house close to Jackie’s Beauty Shop. They rented it and then later sold it on contract. Jeannine went into the house one time after the renter left. She felt something on her legs and, when she looked down, she had fleas all over her legs. The man had some dogs in the house. Glenn had to have the house fumagated.
12. Jeannine said that Glenn taught her to drive a car by H.O. Blair’s old house just north of 13th street in Belton, Texas. It was a standard car and Glenn would lose patience with her when she was having difficulty working the clutch properly on the road’s slight incline. H.O. lived in this house before Billy Blair was born in 1953. Glenn also taught Pearl Digby to drive and he took Lucy Blair (Aubrey Blair’s first wife) to get her driver’s license.
13. Jeannine called “Mexican Hat” flowers “Nigger Toes”. She said they were commonly called this by everyone when she was younger.
14. Jeannine remembers having a high school square dancing party at someone’s house in the country. She went with Buck Bailey. He took 2-3 girls to the party. She said, “I didn’t date anyone until Glenn Blair.”
15. She went by the name “Jeannine” until she went to Amity School, which was an Elementary school. Lyndell Cosper had told all the kids at Amity school that “her cousins were coming”. Jeannine went by the name “Wanda” while at Amity and Salado schools, then went back to using “Jeannine” when her family went back to Belton and she returned to the Belton school (where she had previously gone by the name “Jeannine”). She had a crush on both Ilbert Louis Rose and Dorman Hunter in school.
16. While Jeannine was a little girl, she used to ride a horse named “Lucile”. (This may have been one of the horses that Mart Digby was always getting).
17. Jeannine said she swallowed a marble once and it got stuck between her swollen tonsils. Her mother had to dig it out.
18. Jeannine said that her father wouldn’t let her date. In high school, they had square dances at people’s homes. Grady Bailey (“Buck”) asked her to one at a farm in Nolanville. He took 2-3 girls; it wasn’t a date. Jeannine said that Grady Bailey was a nice boy, but not her type at all. Jeannine didn’t date anyone officially until Glenn Blair.
19. Jeannine said that when she was growing up, they would put wash tubs under the drains to catch rain water. They would use that water to water their house plants.
20. Jeannine said that when she was growing up, her father would make them pull all of the broomweeds out of the yard. She said that she thought it was because he wanted to give them something to do more than to get the weeds pulled up.
21. Jeannine made the following comment about her childhood: “Kids today have too many things. We would just play with our paper dolls under the trees and would use the roots of those trees for houses. We would also build houses out of rocks or check out the chicken coops for fun. We had a lot more to do than Glenn’s family; they didn’t have anything”.
22. Jeannine recalled two of her favorite memories as being (1). Roller skating down south Main street in Belton with Molly Brooks and (2). Playing with paper dolls at their home on Main street.
23. Jeannine said she had “crushes” on Ilbert Louis Rose (“Ilbert”) and Dorman Hunter in school.
24. Mattie (Digby) Wesson recalled the following at the Digby Christmas party on December 20, 2009: “When we were kids, Jeannine and I were having a terrible fight. I said, ‘I hope you fall down the stairs and die!’ About 30 seconds later, Jeannine fell all the way down the stairs. I rushed down the stairs saying, ‘Oh God, Oh God! Please don’t let her be dead!!’ I picked her up, carried her back up the stairs, put her to bed, and took care of her. At this point in the retelling of the story, Jeannine said, ‘I think you pushed me’ to which Mattie replied, ‘I didn’t push you’.
25. Jeannine said, “My father and Emmitt Digby had black boys who worked for them (Hoggy and DeWitt), but we all just considered them family. I didn’t really think of blacks being treated any differently than whites until our first family vacation, when I saw a black couple come into a restaurant and were refused service”.
26. Jeannine said, “When I was a kid, parents gave a silver dollar to kids on their birthday and they tried to match up the year with the child’s birth year. I remember getting some silver dollars when I was a child, but my dad had to borrow some on some years. He told us that we could buy a little pig when we had collected $ 5.00 worth. We did and bought a pig, but it got loose”.
27. Family members camped at Armstrong Crossing and on the Lampassas river across from Armstrong school. Odell & Cody Hyer, Dwayne & JoAnn Digby, Loraine Blair,... used to go, as well as others. When Loraine went, she was miserable and made everyone else feel that way also, so they all went home.
28. During the Great Depression, several family members would stay with Mart and Pearl Digby at different times. Some of these people were O’Dell & Cody Hyer, Leonard & Merle Cosper - it was Lindy who stayed with Mart & Pearl, and Billy Ed Wilson (whose parents had difficulty managing his behavior). Whoever had jobs and a house shared them until they all made it through the depression.
29. Jeannine made huge chicken fried steaks and would tenderize the steaks by beating them with the edge of a small plate. She said that her mother, Pearl Digby, did it this way all the time.
Jeannine (Digby) Blair’s Community Service:
1. Taught children’s Sunday School classes (not sure of years) at both First Christian Church and First Baptist Church in Belton, Texas.
2. Worked with Girl Scouts (not sure of years, but it was when her daughter Jeannie was in Girl Scouts). Jeannine recalled the following story: “When I was a Girl Scout leader, we went to Camp Tahauya in Belton for a week. We stayed in tents with wooden floors and canvas sides and roof. One night, we heard a terrible noise; it was a polecat (skunk) in our tent. The girls and I went nuts, but the skunk wandered out without spraying us”.
3. Leon Valley Golf Association: Held various offices from 1969 to 2000. In 2000, Martha Meyer was President, Jeannine Blair was Vice President, Nancy Hendricks was Secretary, and Oleta O’Neil was Treasurer.
|The Belton Journal, probably in the 1960s or early 1970s|
|Jeannine Blair "Hole in One" Trophy|
Golf trophies Jeannine won include:
a. Leon Valley Women’s Golf Association Ringer Tourney. 2nd flight, low net. April 14, 1970.
b. Leon Valley Women’s Golf Association Ringer Tourney. 1st flight, low net. February 12, 1973.
c. Leon Valley Women’s Golf Association Club Tournament. Winner, 1st flight. 1972.
d. Pitching Contest, 1970.
e. First Baptist Church, Belton Annual Golf Scramble. 1st Place. 1989.
f. Leon Valley Women’s Golf Association Ringer Tourney. 2nd flight, low net. 1970.
g. Leon Valley Women’s Golf Association Handicap Tourney. Runner up, 1st flight. June 18, 1970.
h. Leon Valley Women’s Golf Association Ringer Tourney. 2nd flight, low net. March, 1971.
i. 1st Blind Bogey, Belton. Belton Chamber of Commerce. 1970.
j. Jeannine Blair’s “Hole in One” trophy at Leon Valley Golf Course in Belton, Tx. Hole No. 6 on May 30, 1977. The ball used was a “Dunlop 4".
4. Various offices in the P.T.A.
5. At church, was on the Benevolence committee, was director of the Homebound Ministry, in the Prayer Ministry, and was a member of the Golden Age Club as long as health permitted.
Jeannine had rotator cuff surgery at Scott and White hospital in Temple, Texas on April 2, 2002. In March, 2008, Jeannine told her son Billy that she was under 5' tall. On an information sheet Jeannine filled out as a middle aged adult, Jeannine said, “I am a housewife. I raise chidlren, clean house, and do yard work. I like to sew and play golf”.
Life After Their Marriage
Glenn and Jeannine Elope:
Glenn and Jeannine eloped on February 11, 1947. (In a letter Glenn received from Bill Tarnower on March 8, 1947, he mentioned that Glenn owned a Ford car at this time). Glenn and Jeannine knew each other seven months before they were married. Jeannine was midway through her junior year in high school (barely 16 years old) at the time of their marriage. Jeannine carried her clothes to school one day because she supposedly was going to spend the night with her friend, Gloria Cassell. (INSERT PHOTO OF GLORIA CASSELL & SCHOOL). Glenn and Jeannine had the elopement planned for about ten days. Only Gloria Cassell and H.O. Blair knew about their plans. Later in life, Jeannine still couldn’t believe she had the courage to go through with it. Glenn picked her up at noon in front of Belton high school. They drove to Heartfield’s Forist where Glenn got Jeannine a beautiful white gardenia corsage. Jeannine was wearing her black and white polka dot blouse when they got married (She had a picture taken in this blouse before their marriage).
(This picture was taken when she was 15 years old just before she married Glenn.
He wanted a picture of her for either his birthday or Christmas)
|Jeannine Blair's original wedding|
ring containing diamond chips.
|Ribbon from Jeannine's gardenia|
|Loose page of Jeannine Blair's|
|Loose page of Jeannine|
Blair's diary (back)
|Glenn & Jeannine Blair|
marriage license (front)
|Glenn & Jeannine Blair marriage license|
They went to Temple, Texas and bought a lovely wedding band at the jewelers (in the building east of the municipal building). (Note: There was only a ring for mom; mom could not afford one for dad. Glenn admired a diamond ring that his father wore. His father promised the ring to him. When H.O. Blair died, his second wife Loraine said he had promised the ring to her. Glenn did not know whether H.O. had done this or not. In order to avoid family conflict, Glenn let her have it and pursued it no further. Years later, Jeannine encouraged Glenn to buy himself a diamond ring. He did and wore it until his death.
|Glenn Blair's ring.|
(on top of piece of lava he got from N. Mex.)
|Glenn Blair's ring|
Loraine had H.O. Blair’s diamond reset into a ring for herself; it was probably passed on to one of her daughters). Then they went to DaVilla and talked Johnnie Ruth Garrett, Jeannine’s cousin, into accompanying them to Holland, Texas. They all went to Holland to the preacher’s home, which was the parsonage of Holland Baptist Church). The pastor was Rev. G.W. Robbins (Glenn thought his name was Robinson in his later years). He was an old preacher that Johnnie Ruth knew well. He would preach in small churches around the county. Johnnie Ruth and the preacher’s wife served as witnesses to the wedding. They took Johnnie Ruth home and then went back to Bartlett. Jeannine had forgotten to bring her toothbrush, so Glenn had to stop at a dime store in Bartlett to buy one. Jeannine said that as Glenn was handing her the money to buy the toothbrush, he said, “Now I realize I’m married” (and he’s been dishing out money ever since). Glenn stopped and called his father; his dad kinda expected it. Glenn told him not to tell Jeannine’s folks where they were. He checked in by phone every day until things cooled off. Glenn said that Belton raised off the ground five feet when they found out about their marriage. Jeannine’s mother, Pearl Digby, said she went out and milked the old, brown cow and cried and cried when she found out they had gotten married. Jeannine’s dad, Mart Digby, tolerated it for a long time before he accepted their marriage. Glenn and Jeannine were gone about three days before they came back; their honeymoon was at Rainbow Courts in Rockdale, Texas (915 East Cameron).
|Postcard of Rainbow Courts in|
|Old business card for the|
Rainbow Tourist Camp
|Rainbow Tourist Camp, Rockdale, Texas|
Jeannine Blair said they stayed in a room that looked like the one pictured.
After three days, Pearl Digby told H.O. Blair to tell them to come back. Mack Digby had cooled Jeannine’s parents off. Rita, Jeannine’s sister, was three years old at the time; she would come out wanting to fight Glenn for taking her sister away. (Additional info from Jeannine Blair: "Glenn and I had our honeymoon at Rainbow Courts in Rockdale, Texas. It has been modernized, but is still there. No one knew of our plans to elope except for Gloria June Cassell and H.O. Blair. Gloria Cassell was my excuse. I had told my parents I would be spending the night with her. My father Mart didn’t want me to spend the night with someone on a school night. I still can’t believe I mustered enough courage to go through with it. Mattie Digby did not know about my plans to elope. I was 16 and Glenn was 23 at the time. Pearl and Mart both said that if they had had a gun, they would have shot Glenn").
|Card from Leonard & Merle (Digby) Cosper|
|Card from Lindy Cosper|
On February 11, 2007, Mattie (Digby) Wesson relayed a slightly different, insightful version of Glenn and Jeannine’s relationship. At first, Mattie said she never wanted this story told to anyone outside of Glenn and Jeannine, but then shared it with Billy and Susan Blair. She finally felt comfortable sharing the story since her parents were no longer living: “My daddy didn’t know that Glenn and Jeannine were dating. He thought they were just taking me out to the movies. They would just drop me off at the Teenage Canteen (which was at that time the second floor of the current Bell county museum), then go on a date. Once, I went down the street to a friend’s house and just sat around playing records. I ended up staying longer than I had intended and when I returned, the Canteen was already closed. Glenn had come to pick me up, but I was not there. He had to get Jeannine back in order to meet her curfew. He drove back to the Canteen and, by that time, I was there. He was mad at me, but I told him he couldn’t do anything about it because I was supposed to have been with them. Glenn drove me back home, but parked out on the main street. He walked me up that long, dirt road to our house. Jeannine opened the front bedroom window so that I could sneak back into the house”.
Jeannine recalls the following: “I cooked venison roast once shortly after Glenn and I got married. Glenn had invited one of his truck driving friends to eat dinner and spend the night. The roast needed to cook about two more hours. It was the toughest meat ever! I hope that man knew that I learned how to cook before he died. I also cooked oysters for Glenn once and when I finished, they looked like burnt English peas”. (Note: Jeannine was always questioning how good her cooking was, but in reality was a great cook. This must have been two rare exceptions).
Jeannine was baptized at the First Christian Church in Belton, Texas on April 28, 1946 by Powell A Smith. In June, after their marriage, they took a trip to New Mexico to see Jim and Ninnie Wallace. Mart and Pearl Digby and Glenn and Jeannine went to Carlsbad Caverns; they made the trip in Glenn’s 1946 Ford. Glenn and Jeannine’s first apartment was on the bottom floor of a two-story white frame house (where John Hood Garner’s house is now at 13th and Beal street in Belton); it was a terrible apartment. The oven and refrigerator wouldn’t work and the lady who owned the house wouldn’t fix them. They paid $ 35.00 a month for the furnished apartment and utilities. H.O. and Loraine found them an apartment at Madie Smith’s house, so they moved. Jeannine said that Glenn taught her how to cut up a chicken, but didn’t teach her how to cook. He was just patient with her until she learned how to cook, since she was just sixteen years old. They stayed in this apartment about a month, then they got an apartment with mom Brown and her daughter, Madie Smith. This house was on the corner of Pearl and 6th streets. Glenn and Jeannine lived here until 1950. Jeannine said that her parents gave them a card table the first year or two of their marriage. She would set that card table up all the time with mom Brown when Glenn was gone on long trips. They would play canasta, then rummy. Jeannine said that a soldier’s wife, who lived across the street, initially taught her to knit. Loraine and Merle Digby were the ones who taught her how to sew. When they lived in this house, Jeannine remembered that Madie Smith had purchased an old log cabin from somewhere out in the country and kept it in her back yard for years.
The summer after Glenn and Jeannine got married, they went camping on the Lampassas river just north of Summer’s Mill with H.O. and Loraine Blair, Cody and Odell Hyer, Merle and Leonard Cosper, and possibly Mart and Pearl Digby. They camped here for two or three nights.
|Glenn & Jeannine on trip to the Texas coast, Summer 1947|
Gloria Jean Blair ("Jeannie") was born on December 12, 1947, while Glenn and Jeannine were living at mom Brown’s home. (INSERT PHOTO OF MOM BROWN) She was born at Scott and White hospital in Temple, Texas. The winter of 1947 was cold, with much snow and ice. Jeannine said that she was so sure she was going to have a boy when Jeannie was born that when the doctor told her it was going to be a girl, she said, “Really?” (INSERT PHOTO OF HIGH CHAIR WITH FOLLOWING COMMENT: “Pearl Digby said that she bought this high chair, which was used by her children, Billy and Susan Blair’s children, and Jeannie and Lee Pittman’s children ..., at Henderson Hardware in Belton. This was located where the Judge’s Chambers Restaurant is located now.” Pearl said this in November, 2002). In 1947, Glenn was still in the trucking business with his father. This was the year that First Baptist Church in Belton burned down (where Dr. Kirkley’s office is) (INSERT PHOTO OF CHURCH BURNING). Glenn and Jeannine attended First Christian Church in Belton. Several times, Glenn would take his family to lunch at Avenue Café (which was on the northwest corner of Main St. and Central Avenue) after church. This was the main place in town for the locals to drink coffee and visit. It was great fun to listen to the old farmers, waitresses, and people who worked in the courthouse on the square share their stories with one another. Glenn was a Baptist in his early years, but transferred to the Christian church (Disciples of Christ) because that was where Jeannine’s family attended. Denominations weren’t important to Glenn. When he was in college, he didn’t attend church anywhere. Jeannine Blair said that Jim Sanders was Glenn’s best friend as an adult.
Emmitt and Mack Digby bought a place called Hill Top Courts in Belton in 1948. While H.O. Blair was still in the trucking business, he bought Emmitt Digby out and Glenn bought Mack out on September 21, 1949. Glenn paid Mack Digby $ 8, 084. 59 for half interest in Hill Top Courts, Café, and Station In 1950, H.O., Glenn, and Aubrey quit the trucking business.
About September, Jeannine and Glenn bought an already built (pre-fab) house that was 20 feet by 20 feet. It was a one-bedroom home; they moved it to Hill Top and that became their home. In 1948, H.O. and Loraine Blair moved into the stucco house at Hill Top after doing some work on it; this was the same time that he bought half-interest in the courts. Spec Washburn was the carpenter who worked on the first addition to the home at Hill Top; he died in 1985. Glenn remembered a bunch of rats running across Interstate 35 when it was being built. One time, he was fixing one of the water coolers in one of the courts. He was standing on a chair and opened a panel inside the closet; a large, coiled snake jumped out at him. This scared him half to death and he almost killed himself trying to get out of the closet. Jeannine used to make these foods at Hill Top Courts:
a. Spam (slice it and fry it). Billy liked it.
b. Enchiladas in a can with extra onion, cheese, and chilis on it.
c. Fried apple pies with dried apples.
d. "Gobbledy Gook"
|Jeannine Blair's "Gobbledy Gook" (vanilla waffers, pudding, blueberries, bananas). Yum!|
e. "Snicker Doodle" cookies:
|Jeannine Blair's famous "Snicker Doodles"|
In later life, Glenn would always buy a lot of "Little Debbie" snack food to have at the house when his kids and grandkids would be coming by. He always wanted the pantry to be full (Very understandable for those who lived through the Great Depression).
Billy Blair remembers the following about family moments at Christmas time while growing up at the home at Hill Top Courts:
1. Glenn driving the family over to Temple to see the live nativity scene downtown (Was this in front of the Kyle hotel?) and also driving over to Salado to see Christmas lights. We would always sing “Kum ba ya” or “Jacob’s Ladder” on these trips.
2. Waking up at 6 am on Christmas morning, clad only in red footy pajamas and uncombed hair, and running toward the living room in great anticipation.
3. Listening to Christmas carols on the record player by Tennessee Ernie Ford and also Alvin and the Chipmunks, while my father handed out the gifts.
4. Watching the adults drink hot apple cider while I ate far too many tootsie rolls and enjoyed every minute of it.
When Glenn and Jeannine moved to 504 East 24th Avenue in Belton, the following Christmas memories were prominent:
1. Singing around the piano at uncle Dwayne Digby’s home each Christmas Eve with the rest of our extended family.
2. Taking a late morning walk with my brothers and sisters while my relatives sat in the kitchen discussing current events, still dressed in their bathrobes.
3. Enclosing the garage and rolling out the carpet. Foam pads would be laid all out in the garage so that all the kids could sleep there. They had a blast being out there together each year. We would also have our family “Chinese Christmas” gift exchange in the garage each year.
In January, 1951, Glenn had an ear operation; the recovery took a long period of time. In 1953, Glenn also went into the insurance business to help feed all of his kids; he had his office at the Hill Top Courts office. He kept the insurance business until 1972 (One source says 1979). He still had the insurance company when they moved to 504 East 24th avenue in Belton; then he sold it to Bob Womble. (Glenn’s address at Hill Top was: P.O. Box 325. 817-939-2345. The P.O. box was in the downtown post office, across from the old public library). The family remembered that Christmas day in 1955 was very hot. In 1956, the family took a trip to Holland, Texas to see Bertie Bell (Swan) Blair, Glenn’s mother. Glenn bought a 1956 Chevy; he paid Mart Digby $ 2,000.00 for it (It was blue with a white top). The Blair family took their first major vacation in 1957. Billy remembers the family playing in the snow on the Continental Divide on this trip. Glenn, Bobby, and Billy had the mumps at the same time (not sure of year). We all sat on the green vinyl couch in the den and were miserable. In 1958, Glenn bought a piano for the house; his daughter Jeannie took lessons from Mrs. Haynes. This was also the year that Mart Digby bought Bobby and Billy Blair a model train for Christmas. Glenn mounted it on a board for them. 1962 or 1963 was when the last addition was made to Glenn’s home at Hill Top. Glenn told his mother, Bertie, that she was going to a nursing home while sitting in the car in Glenn’s garage. She cried, said she would be good, .... Steve Blair was a senior in high school when Bertie was put in the nursing home in Killeen. Bertie was a vegetable for two or three years after she had several strokes. Toward the end of her life, all she could move was her big toe. She would answer people’s questions “yes” or “no” by moving her toe.
Glenn was named “Most Outstanding Lion of the Year” by the Belton Lions Club in 1957.
Glenn was heavily involved in community service at this time; some examples of this include: scouting, Tennage Canteen, helping with the Lions Club Christmas float, being the “Lion Tamer”, serving as Director of the club, leadership at First Christian Church in Belton, Little League baseball, and Board of Directors of the Belton Chamber of Commerce (for which he received an appreciation award). In the 1960's, Glenn’s family owned a boat which they kept for several years; he didn’t use it the last three years he had it. Before having this boat, he had an aluminum boat. Glenn joined the First National Bank in Belton, Texas as a cashier in 1962. In 1963, the Blair kids made imprints of their feet in the concrete of the new back patio. According to Jeannine Blair, 1966 was a tough year: Bobby had knee surgery, Jeannie graduated from high school and had her first year at the University of Texas in Austin, Billy was in the hospital with a knee injury in football, Glenn was in the hospital with a hernia in his esophagus, Mary began school, and Jeannine’s father, Mart Digby, died in August. Jeannine said that she used to do Jeannie and Mary’s hair in permanents with rollers. They didn’t like it. Jeannie eventually learned how to do her own hair, but Mary didn’t. From January, 1969 to August, 1972, Glenn and Jeannine sponsored a foster parent child named Ricardo L. Cruz, who lived in the slums of Pasay City, Philippines. In 1971, Glenn sold the land at Hill Top to Texaco and built a new house at 504 East 24th street in Belton; he paid $ 45,000.00 cash for it (Jeannine thought it cost $ 35, 000.00). Glenn initially went to the Baptist church, then joined the First Christian church (Disciples of Christ) in Belton after his marriage to Jeannine. Glenn and Jeannine transferred their church membership from the First Christian Church in Belton to the First Baptist Church in Belton in March of 1972 (Billy thought the whole family transferred to First Baptist before his high school graduation in May, 1971). Jeannine remembered she and Glenn standing up at First Christian Church in Belton and voting against Francis Smythe becoming their pastor. They were the only ones to do so, although several members of the congregation felt the same way they did. They had nothing personally against him; they just felt he wasn’t the right man for their church at the time. Glenn was elected Vice-President and cashier at First National Bank in Belton in 1974.
First National Bank, Belton Memories:
|The bank as I remember it in the 1960's in Jr. High and High School.|
|EMPLOYEES OF FIRST NATIONAL BANK, BELTON, TEXAS|
December, 1974 (Taken in SE corner of the bank; view is west to east)
Identification for the above picture (Source: Glenn Blair, 1974 and Rita Digby Locklin):
Front Row (left to right):
Dr. J.W. Pittman: Vice-President (Inactive)
Dorothy Golden Burton: Assistant Cashier
Glenn Blair: Cashier
Owen P. Carpenter Sr.: President
Alton C. Martin: Vice-President
Jim James: Assistant Cashier
Second Row (seated, left to right):
Jo Ann Baird Burna
Linda Miller (Note: Rita Digby Locklin identifies her as: Linda Ratliff McCracken)
Rita (Digby) Locklin
Gloria (Jimenez) Zacharias
Zonna (Copeland) Chenoweth
Third Row (standing, left to right):
Clarinda ("Sissy") Brooks
Adrianne Lowey: Secretary (Note: Rita Digby Locklin identifies her as: Adrianne Lewey)
Owen P. Carpenter, Jr.
John P. Bloomer
Mrs. Mildred Pittman
Ed E. Franklin
Roy Cochran Potts
Noah L. Nelson: Utility Man
(Note: A.G. Vick was a director of First National Bank, but died in about 1960. Source: Ann Gael, granddaughter of A.G. Vick).
|Employees of First National Bank in Belton, Texas (Bell County)|
Identification of the above picture:
Front row (seated, left to right):
Owen P. Carpenter: President
Alton C. Martin
Mildred Curry Kaiser
Back row (standing, left to right):
Dr. J.W. Pittman
Roy Cochran Potts
Ed E. Franklin
1. Glenn used to walk from the old Post Office on Main street (across from the present Bell county museum) with white bags of money under his arm or swinging by his side. Sometimes, he would be carrying $ 100,000.00 in the bags. He walked, carrying these bags by himself for years.
|Belton Post Office|
(As it looked when Glenn Blair worked at the bank).
Their money for the bank came from First National Bank in Dallas to the main street post office in Belton. If bags of change came in, Glenn would drive over and get it,
|Bank bag for paper money|
|Bank bag for coins|
|This "coin bag" is filled with|
$ 150.00 of misc. change.
| Bank bag for coins.|
Used in 1950s - 1960s
|Bank bag for paper money|
2. Once, the armored car dropped off everyone’s checks that were to be posted against their accounts to the side door slot of the bank. When Glenn arrived that morning, the men in the armored car had not re-locked the slot. Glenn stated, “Checks were on the floor of the driveway and God knows where else.” Glenn ordered copies of all the checks sent from Dallas. At that time, people’s original checks were returned to them, not copies. We only had one or two people who wouldn’t let us post the amounts to their accounts”. Glenn had to talk to each of the customers to explain what happened. Glenn said that it was a very stressful event. He jokingly said that he probably lost half of his hair then.
3. Glenn said that they had an old knucklebuster safe at the old First National Bank building on Central Avenue which they kept cash in. He said, "When they were transferring everything over to the new bank, Jim Jones, who was a cashier at the time, shut the safe door. After a few days at the new bank, they realized that no one knew the combination of the safe and they couldn’t get it open. They called me after I’d been gone for a long time from the bank. Although I’d opened that safe a thousand times, I couldn’t remember the combination. I don’t know if they ever got it open. The people at the bank said they thought they transferred all the money out before the door got shut".
|Sample of a Belton Natl. Bank check|
from the 1800s.
|Sample of a First Natl. Bank check|
|Example of money used when the bank could print it's own money. |
Note that the five dollar bill has "The Farmers National Bank of Belton"
on it as well the signature of "Owen P. Carpenter".
4. One of the girl employees in the old First National Bank building on Central Avenue snuck a coke into the front area of the bank. They were supposed to drink them only in the break room. She accidentally spilled it into one of the machines up front, creating a huge problem.
|Inside First National Bank in the 1960s.|
Unidentified woman, Glenn Blair, and Rita Locklin (right) in teller area.
(View is NE to SW; Courthouse square seen outside windows)
|Alton C. Martin inside First National Bank in Belton.|
Judge Owen P. Carpenter in background in his office.
(View is west to east; Picture taken from teller area).
|Some of the girls who worked at First National Bank in the 1960s.|
5. Glenn said he never applied for a job in his life. Judge Owen P. Carpenter (President of First National Bank at the time) called Glenn while Glenn was hanging curtains at his home at Hill Top and asked him if he’d come work for him at the bank. Glenn told him no. When Mr. Carpenter asked him why, Glenn told him, “You don’t pay enough money, Judge.” He asked Glenn to come see him the next day and that maybe both of them would be surprised. Glenn did and they talked with some others at the bank. Glenn began to work for him the next day.
6. Glenn had his insurance agency at his office at Hill Top. First National Bank had insurance there. Judge Owen P. Carpenter was a lawyer; he didn’t know anything about running a bank. Judge Carpenter mainly took care of all the loan business. Glenn did all the rest at the bank, except for the loans, which he did later. Glenn and Jeannine had most of their money at People’s National Bank in Belton since Melba Ruth and Dorothy Nell worked there. Glenn and Jeannine did some of their financial business at First National in Belton.
7. People that Glenn worked with at First National Bank in Belton:
Andy Sebastian: He took a job around Ft. Worth.
Alton Martin: He knew Glenn from the Belton Lions Club. He was Glenn’s regular golf buddy for many years at Leon Valley Golf Course.
8. Jeannie (Blair) Pittman remembers Glenn writing notes to her on the deposit slips when he put money in her account.
9. Billy Blair remembers that Glenn would exchange $50.00 or $ 100.00 cash for bags of change at the bank and would bring the bags home for us to look through. We had coin collections and had a lot of fun looking through all that change while sitting on our beds. Then Glenn would return the change the next day and get the appropriate amount of cash back. Glenn accumulated a silver dollar collection between the 1960s - 1980s that he sold in the 1980s for several thousand dollars.
10. The old Belton Fire map that Glenn had came from lawyer Clem Countess’ office. Glenn made a deal with Sun Bright paper company in Waco for the paper in this office that the bank took over when Clem Countess died. The office was on the second floor of the First National bank building on Central avenue. Two other lawyers who occupied separate offices above the bank at approximately the same time were Arthur O’ Conner and J.W. Thomas. Jeannine Blair did not remember the years they were there.
11. The new First National Bank built after Glenn was President of the bank had the following address: P.O Box 658. Belton, Texas. 76513. (817) 939-3701. It was built on the same lot that the Digby’s and Blair’s had the watermelon stand (just south of Pittman’s Cleaners). Rita (Digby) Locklin said that they moved to the new bank location 300 East 1st street in Belton on May 8, 1980. It was re-chartered and the name was changed to First Texas Bank.
12. Glenn was promoted to Executive Vice-President of First National Bank in Belton effective March 1, 1977. His monthly salary was fixed at $ 1, 100.00. He was paid ½ of his salary on the 15th and the remaining half on the last day of the month. Jim James was promoted to Cashier at the same time with a monthly salary of $ 750.00. Their titles were “Vice President and Cashier” and “Assistant Vice-President”. Each man was granted $ 15.00 per month for bank expenses.
|Recommendation letter of Owen P. Carpenter to promote|
Glenn Blair to Executive Vice-President of First National Bank
in Belton and to promote Jim James as Cashier.
(Letter typed on manual typewriter on onion-skin paper).
13. Glenn didn’t care for R. Griffin Lord, President of 1st State Bank (1st National) because he wasn’t settled and invested in the Belton community. They got along OK though and in later years, Griff mellowed out and began to invest in the community.
14. First National Bank, Belton addresses:
a. February 1, 1991: P.O. Box 658. Belton, Tx. (817) 939-3701.
b. June 18, 1992: P.O. Box 849. 300 East 1st Avenue. Belton, Tx. 76513. (817) 939-3701.
|First National Bank baseball team, probably in the 1970s|
15. Names for First National Bank in Belton:
a. Farmer’s State Bank: Early name for the bank. (Source: as of December 30, 1905).
|Farmer's National Bank in Belton, Texas.|
b. First National Bank: (Source: from at least 1978 to 1991).
c. 1st Texas Bancorp Inc. & Subsidiaries: They bought the bank from Owen P. Carpenter. Bancorp made Glenn Blair President. A Georgetown employee came down to Belton and was the middle man between First National and Bancorp. (From at least 1978 to 1999). Jay C. Sloan was the Chairman of the Board, Chief Executive Officer for Bancorp (in a letter dated Feb. 5, 1980 to Glenn). 1st Texas Bancorp, Inc. 104 East 8th street. Box 139. Georgetown, Texas. 78626. (512) 863-2594. Austin phone: (512) 255-3627.
d. 1st Texas Bank: First National’s name was changed to this after Glenn Blair retired. Had the same address as First National.
e. The Belton National Bank: Check # 392 in 189__.
16. There were some banks that Glenn kept their yearly summary statements for comparison to First National. These banks included:
a. People’s National Bank: 1986-1987.
b. Central Texas Bank: 1978-1979.
c. Texana National Bank: 1986-1988.
17. Jeannine Blair said there was a lawyer named O’Conner that had his office on the second floor of First National Bank in Belton. She said she thought there were two lawyer offices up there. (Mr. O’Conner’s wife was the one who owned the land in Belton where Susan Blair went to Day Camps when in Girl Scouts). Tommy Thornton thought that his father, Raymond Thornton, had his lawyer office in one of the two offices when he first moved to Belton to set up his practice, but this hasn’t been confirmed. When Glenn Blair was cleaning out one of the lawyer offices and found the old Belton Fire Map from the 1920's, the second floor was being used for storage for the bank.
18. Rita (Digby) Locklin to JoAnn Spence Berna: "...Remember when they let us go to Britt's Drug Store and fill up bags of the mixed candy you bought by the pound? No wonder I put on weight. JoAnn replied, Yes... and all the Wesley burgers...right across the street (referring to the hamburgers that Wes Coppin made at the Hamburger King, just south of the bank). (Note: Rita Digby Locklin worked at First National Bank from August, 1967 to her retirement in 2012).
In response, JoAnn Spence said to Rita (Digby) Locklin: "...Remember when we sold football tickets at the bank? What a nightmare that was. People would call and order their tickets before the bank opened and by the time the bank opened at 9 am ... we didn't have any left...sure got lots of chewing out over that...".
19. According to Jeannine Blair, Alton Martin didn’t resent Glenn’s promotions at the bank. He had received more promotions than Glenn and was a Vice-President at the bank. Alton was the one who recommended to Judge Carpenter to try to get Glenn to work at the bank initially. Alton and Glenn were great golf buddies and Alton liked the fact that Glenn took work off of him, especially the insurance agency.
|Glenn Blair (left) & Alton Martin at Leon Valley Golf Course in Belton, Texas|
(View is NW to SE; Hole # 4 teebox. Background: Hole # 5 green/ Hole # 7).
Picture taken in April, 1964.
Memories of "Blair's Insurance Agency":
Judge Carpenter either owned the insurance company or it was in the bank’s name. It was called the “Belton Insurance Agency”. Glenn got paid extra money for managing this company at the bank. Glenn also got approval to have his own insurance company, but only for one year. When that time ended, Glenn was going to leave the bank and keep his insurance company if Judge Carpenter didn’t let him keep it. Judge agreed to let him continue with both. Glenn stayed very busy with his job at the bank, running the insurance company, managing Hill Top Courts, and working at the Hill Top Courts gas station when employees didn’t show up.
|Original masonite sign that hung outside Glenn Blair's Hill Top Courts office.|
1. Glenn was an independent Insurance Agent and worked with several companies:
a. Roberts & Rhea Texas Managers
1401 West Lancaster— Edison 6-9211(Note: This was the phone number: ED 6 - 9211).
P.O. Box 1198. Ft. Worth, Texas (As of 1968).
b. International Service Insurance Company (Same address as Roberts & Rhea; they were affiliated with them).
2. Blair Insurance Agency at Hill Top Courts: 1701 South Main. Belton, Texas.
3. Jeannie (Blair) Pittman remembers the following: "Dad bought the First National Insurance business (not sure about the date). I think that First National had to divest because of new Federal regulations at that time. This buyout made dad's insurance company so much bigger that Bob Womble approached him about selling his combined agency. I think dad decided to sell because by then he was making good money at the bank and because his insurance agency was so big it was demanding more time than he had. He had to do all of the insurance work after completing his hours at the bank. He could no longer do any insurance work at the bank. I think that his duties increased at the bank about that time also, but I'm not positive about that."
In the same year, Glenn received an appreciation award from the Board of Education of Belton schools for dedicated service. In 1977, he was elected Executive Vice-President of First National; he had been working at the bank for fifteen years at this time. Glenn joined First Baptist Church in Belton in March, 1972. On January 19, 1978, he was elected President of First National Bank. One newspaper article quoted the past president and owner of the bank, Judge Owen P. Carpenter, as saying, “...his banking experience, dedication to the Belton community and performance have earned him this position of trust and high stature. We feel the bank and the Belton business community both have benefitted from this move.” Glenn led the bank in building a new bank on the lot where the old watermelon stand was when he was dating his future wife. They did some of their courting here. Glenn wanted to build a bank on this location for many years. (INSERT PHOTOS/ DRAWINGS). The groundbreaking ceremony for the new bank was on Thursday, May 3, 1979; Glenn’s son, Brian, participated with him in the ceremony. (INSERT GLENN’S BUSINESS CARD).
|The main golf course the Blair family played - Belton, Texas|
|Leon Valley Scorecard - Glenn Blair|
|Leon Valley Scorecard -Jeannine Blair|
1. Glenn and Jeannine loved to play golf. Glenn’s trophies included:
a. 1st Blind Bogey (probably the 1970 Belton Chamber of Commerce men’s tourney).
b. First Baptist Church, Belton Annual Golf Scramble. 1st place. 1989.
2. Most of the time, Glenn would pick up broken pieces of used golf tees laying on the tee boxes that would still support a ball instead of buying new golf tees.
3. Glenn would enjoy picking up pecans on hole # 5 and 6 by the Leon river and eat them while playing.
4. Jeannine said, “In golf, I used to say ‘sh__’ as my occasional cuss word for bad shots. My golf partner, Martha Meyers, used to say ‘Hell’s Bells’ when hitting a bad shot. Glenn told me one day that he wished I’d stop saying my word and take Martha’s word back."
Jeannine enjoyed sewing and painting as well as playing golf.
|Jeannine Blair in her sewing room at their home at|
504 East 24th Avenue in Belton, Texas.
|Jeannine Blair painting|
|Jeannine Blair painting|
Jeannine also enjoyed playing "Chicken Feet" dominoes with family and friends, as seen below.
|Susan Blair, Jeannine Blair, and Gale Cosper (right)|
playing "Chicken Feet" at Jeannine's home on 24th Avenue
in Belton, Texas in 2005.
Glenn had headaches (not migraines) for many years. The headaches got much worse one year many years ago on July 4th. Glenn was at a stop sign in Belton and a black man in a pickup truck ran into his car. Jeannine didn’t know if maybe he got whiplash or something else jarred loose, but his headaches became much worse after that happened. Glenn retired in February of 1980. Glenn worked at Cochran, Blair, and Potts Department store in Belton from 1983 to 1994. (Note: This is the oldest department store in Texas). Glenn served as the executor of Wayne Skinner’s estate from October 22, 1991 to December 3, 1992. Alton Martin had declined and Glenn was the back up. Glenn charged $ 25.00 per hour plus $.20 per mile for handling the estate and preparing Mr. Skinner’s income tax return. In 1994, he began working at Pittman’s Cleaners in Belton, which is owned by his daughter, Jeannie, and her husband Lee. (As of November, 2003, he had been working for Pittman’s Cleaners for nine years). Glenn had prostate cancer surgery in October of 1995 at Scott and White hospital in Temple, Texas. Glenn and Jeannine had their 50th wedding anniversary on February 8, 1997 at 6 pm at the Wildflower Country Club in Belton. It was a small family gathering at their request. Jeannine had a cancerous kidney removed at Scott and White hospital on February 23, 1997. In May, 2002, Jeannine worried that her cancer was returning. On Christmas, 2002, Glenn and Jeannnie finally let their kids give them the gift of paying someone to keep up their yard, although Glenn just allowed this for one year and then took it back over. Jeannine said that Glenn was afraid to quit working/ going. He felt like he would die if he stopped. Glenn relayed the following story to his son Billy on December 31, 2004: “I was backing my car out of the garage. The ignition wasn’t working properly, so I laid down on my side to check under the steering wheel. I pushed the accelerator and the car took off down the driveway, barely missing the trees, ditch, and telephone pole. All this time, I was still laying on my side, working the accelerator, steering wheel, and brakes with my hands. The car was now off the driveway into the ditch. It wouldn’t start. I left the car there until the afternoon, then tried again. It started, but I backed it up so fast that he knocked several tree branches off and flew to the back of the driveway”. Billy told Glenn that if he told Jeannie that story, he would be driving a tricycle in the future. On February 11, 2005, about one month before Glenn’s death, he and Jeannine celebrated their 58th wedding anniversary quietly at home. Glenn died on Monday, March 14, 2005 of respiratory failure at the age of 81.
|Glenn Blair, Memorial Service program|
|Glenn Blair death certificate|
|Glenn & Jeannie's rose bush.|
Only rose left when Glenn died.
|Glenn Blair obituary|
|Glenn Blair obituary|
March 31, 2005
The Belton Journal
His memorial service was on Saturday, March 19, 2005 at First Baptist Church in Belton, Texas. He was cremated and his ashes were spread about 5:30 pm that afternoon in a beautiful field across from their home at 504 East 24th Avenue in Belton by his wife, children and spouses, and grandchildren. Gale Cosper graciously agreed to stay at Glenn & Jeannine's home with Jeannine until she decided whether to remain at their home or move into an assisted living place in Temple, Texas. About two years after Glenn's death, Jeannine made the decision to sell her home and move into the Garden Estates Assisted Living Facility in Temple, Texas where some of her friends lived. Eventually, the progression of her Parkinson's Disease made it necessary for her to move to Park Place Nursing Home in Belton, where she lived until she died from Parkinsons on May 26, 2016. Her Memorial Service was at First Baptist Church in Belton, Texas at 1 pm on June 11, 2016. Her ashes were spread that evening in the same location as her husband's ashes were in 2005.
|Garden Estates in Temple, Texas where Jeannine Blair lives.|
|Jeannine Blair's living room at|
Garden Estates in Temple, Texas.
|Susan Blair & Jeannine Blair|
|Jeannine Blair & son Billy Blair|
Jeannine Blair's grandson, Josh Pittman, posted the following, along with the above picture, on the social media website, "Facebook", the day after he helped spread Jeannine Blair's ashes:
"Yesterday we said goodbye to Grandma Blair. She fought Parkinson's for many years. She was a great lady who raised a great family. We spread her ashes under the same oak that we spread Grandpa Blair's ashes under. She wanted his ashes spread where she could see. So every morning she had her coffee while looking at Grandpa's tree. She is with him now. The strength of a tree is in its roots. Storms come and go, but the roots hold firm. This is our family. They were our roots".
Glenn Blair’s Community Service:
1. First Christian Church in Belton, Texas:
A. Early 1950's: Sunday School teacher for high school boys.
D. Chairman of the Board.
2. Belton Lions Club: He was a member for about 40 years (Director and Officer).
A. 1957: Named “Most Outstanding Lion of the Year” by the Belton Lions Club (Glenn said this was primarily for all the work he did getting the Cub Scout house set up/ maintained near the UMBH campus).
B. In the Lions Club Minstrel Shows for many years in Belton. (He was the chairman for publicity & programs in the April 14-15, 1966 “Dixie Showboat” show at the Tiger Gym). NOTE: Although inappropriate in today's world, these shows were supported by the whole community and raised money for worthy causes.
|Cover of the 1966 Lions Club Minstrel Program|
|1966 Lions Club Minstrel Program|
("Why" the program is held each year)
|In preparation for the annual Belton Lions Club "Minstrel Show"|
C. Helped with the Lions Club Christmas Float.
D. Was the “Lion Tamer”.
The following story was shared at the 2005 Lion’s Club Minstrel Show by Dr. Long (“Hypo”) following Glenn’s death: “We’ll miss Sharon (Schrimsher) Murrah (Dan Murrah’s wife), who played music for us all these years. We will also miss Glenn Blair, who was part of the minstrel for many years. I don’t think Glenn would mind if I told this story: One year my father in law came to the minstrel show. He was sitting up close in the audience and was heckling us throughout the show (which was expected at the minstrel). Glenn was opening/ closing the curtains between acts as well as other things. I told Glenn he needed to open the curtains now and Glenn, hearing my father in law continue to heckle, said, ‘I think we ought to do something about that drunk on the front row!’ He later said, ‘I didn’t know he was Hypo’s father in law!’”
Jeannine said that one time Glenn did a skit with some other men at the minstrel. They were “whistling tummies” where you had your chest shaved, wore a large hat over your head, and had a face painted on your stomach. You would push your stomach in/ out to give the appearance of whistling. Jeannine didn’t think that Glenn ever had his face blackened for the minstrel show.
According to Dr. Will Long, the following men had their faces blackened (“End Men”) in the minstrel shows and did most of the routines. Their stage names were:
1. “Knotty Pine” (Jim) Woodall
2. “Duck” Casey (Stan)
3. “Ready” K.W. Cawthon
4. “Dead Letter” Mulholland
5. “Bugger Bones” Lord
6. “Double Crease” (Jack) Pittman
7. “Glocoat” John Melvin
8. “Hypo” Long (Will)
9. “Currency” Cox (Halley)
10. “Blackboard” (Joe) Pirtle
11. “Rigor Mortis” Digby (Mart) (Note: He never had a speaking part)
|"Rigor Mortis" Digby prepared for the Minstrel Show.|
In his living room at his home on Beale Street in Belton.
13. “Mortar Board” (C.W.) Clements
14. “Round Man (D.L.) Petty
Some other names of the “End Men” from the April 14-15, 1966 “Dixie Showboat” Minstrel Show (which began at 8:01 5/8 pm) in the Tiger Gym included:
15. “Sweetbread” Benny Bay
16. “Foul Out” Bob McFarland
17. “Liability” Royce Smythe
18. “Butterball” Jerry Brentham (Billy Blair remembers him singing “Old Man River” some years).
19. “Power-Glide” Bill Pustka
At the time, the minstrel shows were the year’s most popular event in the town and blacks as well as whites attended. Although this type of event would never be held now, back then it was a fun time for all filled with laughter, candy, and door prizes. Billy Blair doesn’t ever remember hearing a word about race in the years he attended. Billy won a door prize one year and was thrilled until he realized it was a new school desk, probably donated by Griggs Equipment Company in Belton. Folded pieces of paper with numbers written on some of them were stapled to the bags of candy that were sold. Bags with numbers indicated you had won a door prize. It seems as though at least one year they taped a number under a chair in the audience for a special door prize.
Billy Blair remembers Glenn telling the story about Lion’s Club members being able to bring their wives to their meeting in the back room of Butch’s Café on Central Avenue (now Shouff’s Bar-B-Que). It was when Jeannine was pregnant with their son, Brian. This pregnancy was unexpected and Jeannine was older than most when she got pregnant, so when Glenn stood up to introduce her to the group, he said, “I’d like to introduce you to my wife, Sarah (as in Sarah and Abraham since they had Isaac at such an old age). The place broke up laughing. Billy said that Glenn and Jeannine had planned to have their first two children, but not the rest (He was also glad it worked out this way since he was number three)..
3. Boy Scout Troop: He was a Pack Master. He was involved in Boy Scouts for many years in various positions.
Cub Scouts: A “Den” was a small group of scouts who would meet at people’s homes. John Melvin was the Cubmaster. Glenn was his assistant and then later took over the job. Carmen Amatto and Mrs. Griggs (Charlie Grigg’s mother). The “Pack” met at Leon Heights Elementary auditorium (local groups). The Pinewood Derby championships for cub scouts were held at the Amory in Temple, Texas. Glenn also remembered them being held at Camp Tahayah and Leon Heights Elementary auditorium as well as the American Legion Hall in Belton. One year at the Temple Amory, a girl slipped underneath a truck which was backing up into the building during the Pinewood Derby competition. Everyone screamed for the driver to stop, which he did. Her body was touching the tire, but she was not injured.
|Bobby Blair's Pinewood Derby Placque|
(made of plaster of Paris, then painted)
Billy and Bobby both won with their pinewood derby cars that year. Bobby’s blue car was beautifully made. Billy’s red car had a rougher look. Glenn and Billy discovered that the car ran faster backwards because it had all the lead at the back section. They ran it backwards, to everyone’s surprise, and won. Glenn’s troop was Troop # 155. The women led the meetings; we met in their homes. The boys were ages 7-8.
Boy Scouts: The Boy Scout house we had by Mary Hardin Baylor campus: C.V. Griggs donated the house. It used to be located by Griggs Equipment Company in Belton. He wanted to use the land for something else. It was moved through the Belton Lions Club to the MHB area. They remodeled the building (Note: The current location of this building now would be about 1-2 blocks inside the main entrance to UMHB campus on the left side of the road. It is now a parking area). Hudson Allen was the Scout leader. Glenn got into the Lions Club the year before. He spent a lot of time on both the building remodeling and taking care of the grounds around it. This is one of the main reasons he got “Lion of the Year” award later on (Note: Try to find a photo of the house in Lion’s Club records or Univ. of Mary Hardin Baylor records).
Explorers: (after Boy Scouts): They met in the basement of the Methodist church in Belton. Possibly, Brian Blair was involved in this? Glenn couldn’t remember which boy was involved.
Info. from Scout Books:
a. Scout Field Book (Glenn Blair, Troop 155. Belton, Tx.). Copyright: 1957.
b. Wolf Cub Scout Book (Billy Blair. Den Mother: Mrs. Griggs. Den Dad: Mr. Griggs. Den Chief: Mr. Dulaney). 1960 Printing.
c. Bear Cub Scout Book (Bobby Blair. Den Mother: Mrs. Amato & Mrs. Griggs. Den Dad: Sam Amato. Den Chief: Dad Blair. Note: Mrs. Jones “signed off” on several tasks as well as parents). 1958 Printing.
d. Lion-Webelos Cub Scout Book (Bobby Blair. Pack # 215. Den # 2). 1959 Revision. (Note: “Webelos” stands for “We’ll Be Loyal Scouts”).
e. The Official Boy Scout Handbook (Joshua Lee Pittman. Troop # 117. Patrol: Dragons. Jean Potts “signed off” on several tasks). November, 1986.
f. The Big Bear Cub Scout Book (Josh Pittman. Pack # 117. Den # 6. Den Leader: Brenda McGuire).1984.
g. Webelos Scout Book. 1985 Printing. (Doesn’t look used).
h. Handbook For Boys. (Bobby Blair. Pack # 215. Other names scratched out above Bobby’s include: Worth Whitley and Bertis R. Mattson or Bert S.R. Mattson). June, 1952.
i. Handbook For Scoutmasters (Glenn Blair. Troop 155, Belton, Tx.). 1955.
j. Boy Scout Handbook (Glenn Blair. Lists address as Box 325, Belton, Tx with phone of WE9-2345. It is scratched through with pencil to read 504 E. 24th and 939-2345). August, 1961.
k. The Official Boy Scout Handbook (Brian Blair. Troop 117). October, 1983.
l. Webelos Scout Book (Brian Blair. Pack 117. Earned his Bobcat badge in October, 1983). 1982 Printing.
m. Wolf Cub Scout Book (Brian Blair. Den # 4. Pack # 117. Heart of Texas Council. Den Leader: Donna Edwards. Kandy Kirkley. J.G. Mary Brown. Bill Browne. Janet L. Daniel). Copyright: 1978, but tasks “sign off” dates were 1980-1982.
4. Belton Chamber of Commerce: 1960's. Treasurer and Board Member. He received an appreciation award for being on the Board of Directors. He also received a certificate of appreciation by the Belton Area Chamber of Commerce for Time & Hard Work toward Chamber goals signed by Don R. Owens, President.
5. Belton School Board: He was a member in 1974. He received an appreciation award from the Board of Education of Belton Schools in 1974 for dedicated service. Jeannine Blair said that when Glenn ran for the School Board, he received the most votes of anyone running. First National Bank president, Judge Owen P. Carpenter, made Glenn quit the Board. The School Board had raised school taxes for the first time in many years and people voiced their complaints to Glenn at the Bank, which caused enough disruption that Judge Carpenter requested Glenn resign the Board immediately. Glenn resigned that day.
|Owen P. Carpenter letter demanding|
Glenn Blair resignation from Belton School Board.
|Glenn Blair letter resigning from|
Belton School Board.
At the current Belton High School, there is a brick honoring Glenn for his years of service to the Belton ISD.
6. First Baptist Church in Belton, Texas: (Note: Glenn joined this church in March, 1972).
|First Baptist Church, Belton, Texas - 1960s|
|Deacon Ordination Certificate - Glenn Blair|
|Twenty year Deacon Certificate|
Glenn served as Chairman of the Finance committee. Glenn was ordained as a deacon at First Baptist Church in Belton on January 19, 1979. (The actual ordination service was on January 21st in the evening service. The new deacons were: Glenn Blair, David Leigh, Larry Thompson, Richard Herweck, Jack Shannon, Jesse Robinson, Howard Whitis, Don Owens, and Richard Crain (INSERT PHOTO). There was an article in the Belton Journal newspaper on February 1st). The following is a summary of Glenn’s ordination speech to the congregation:
“I’m lucky because I have a wonderful family. I also had a dedicated Christian mother who taught me about Christ. I accepted Christ when I was about 12-13 years old, but actually He has been part of my life since I’ve been able to walk. Mom taught me to make my belief in God part of every minute and day of my life. Not that I’d obey it, but that I’d have strength in making decisions. This I regard as probably the most important thing in my life. Our whole purpose in life is to make it a little better for those who come after us. I believe the purpose of a deacon is to be of service to others and to lead an example life to show non-Christians.”
These beliefs continued to influence Glenn in his later life. His granddaughter, Megan Blair, did a biography of Glenn for a school assignment when she was in middle school. She asked him what his advice was for the younger generation. His response was, "Enjoy life, be willing to work to the best of your abilities, and try your hardest to make the world a better place.:"
|GLENN BLAIR CARRYING HIS MOTHER, BERTIE BELL (SWAN) BLAIR.|
Taken at her home in Holland, Texas in the 1950's.
Bertie was a great Christian influence on Glenn and this was one of his
very favorite pictures.
Glenn had been raised in the Baptist church. When he got married, he joined the First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Belton, Texas where Jeannine’s family went. In 1972, he and his family joined the First Baptist church.
7. Teen Age Canteen: President and Manager.
8. Little League: Assistant.
9. United Fund: Treasurer and on the Board for many years.
10. City of Belton Planning and Zoning Committee: Was on this committee for several years.
11. P.T.A. President: Jr. high.
(Note: Glenn notes that he probably left out a lot of stuff and some of the dates are pure guesses).
Houses where Glenn and Jeannine Blair lived:
1. Beal street in Belton, Texas?
2. By Jackie’s Beauty Shop (tree in road by beauty shop). Miller Heights area. Jeannine lived here twice, on Avenue J, during her childhood. The home used to belong to Anderson Ray, Alta Ray’s father.
3. I.H. 35 between Belton and Salado, Texas (Hill Top Courts home).
4. 504 East 24th avenue. Belton, Texas. Bill Deetsman from McGregor built the house. The floor plans were drawn on March 4, 1971.
(List of homes from conversation with Glenn & Jeannine Blair on September 1, 1996):
1. Main street (by the Golden Chicken place).
2. Beal street?
3. By Jackie's Beauty Shop (where there was a tree in the road). The Miller Heights area.
4. IH 35 between Belton and Salado.
(List of homes from Jeannine Blair on June 3, 2005):
1. The northeast corner of 13th and Pearl Street in Belton. They had a downstairs apartment in this two-story house. The owner would never fix the stove or refrigerator, so they left after one month.
2. 604 North Pearl street, behind the old First Baptist Church building in Belton. Madie Smith’s home. Her mother, Nora Brown (“mom” Brown) lived with her.
3. Home at Hill Top Courts on Interstate 35 (US Hwy. 81) between Belton and Salado, Texas.
4. 504 East 24th Avenue. Belton, Texas (close to Leon Valley Golf Course).
Pets of the Glenn Blair Family:
1. “Shorty”. Our horse in May, 1954. Mart Digby was always trading Shetland ponies and boarding them at the barn at Glenn and Jeannine’s home at Hill Top Courts. Glenn said that just about the time his kids fell in love with a horse, Mart would replace it with another one.
1. “Joe Dog” in 1966 and 1967. (Billy’s favorite pet in childhood). One Sunday morning, Glenn and family were going to church at First Christian Church in Belton. They saw Joe dog laying dead on Interstate 35. Glenn called Doyle Jackson (who worked at Hill Top at the time) from the church and asked him if he would go pick Joe up off the highway so that his children wouldn’t see him on the way home from church. Doyle was glad to do it. (INSERT PHOTO OF “JOE” IN 1967).
3. “Snoopy”. He died in December, 1985 (INSERT PHOTO).
4. “Frisky”. He died in 2003 or 2004. This is the last pet they owned. (INSERT PHOTO).
Note: They would always have just one pet at a time, a dog. There were several “Frisky’s” and “Snoopy’s” over the years.
Vacations of the Glenn Blair Family:
1957: First long vacation to Colorado, then California.
|Giant Sequoia drive-through. Jeannine, Billy, Jeannie, & Bobby Blair.|
1960: Ozark Mountains.
1962: First time family went on a camping vacation to Garner State Park, Texas.
1963: Smokey Mountains and Washington D.C. Also trip to Tomball, Texas near Houston to see Aubrey and Lucy Blair.
1964: Grand Canyon, Yosemite, Disneyland.
1965: Yellowstone, Canada.
1966: Galveston, New Orleans (with Roy and Margaret Heartfield, and their son “litte Roy”).
1969: Yellowstone (This is the last trip that their son, Billy, took with the family).
1970: Colorado (travel trailer trip).
1972: Bastrop State Park.
1973: San Antonio, Texas.
1975: Padre Island, Texas.
1976: Colorado in June; Caribbean Cruise in August.
1978: Colorado, Yellowstone, South Dakota (Those who went on this trip included: Glenn and Jeannine Blair, Mary Blair, Brian Blair, Billy and Susan Blair, Jeannie and Lee Pittman, and Josh Pittman).
1979: Six Flags Over Texas in Arlington, Texas in June.
1980: From June to July 5th: Cuchara Valley, Colorado and Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado. (Glenn and Jeannine Blair and son Brian went).
1981: In August/ September, went to Europe with Ralph and Alva Mae Hooker.
1982: In early summer, went to Lake Ouachita, Arkansas with relatives.
1987: August 1st - Spent first night in Palestine, Texas. Round trip train ride to Rusk, Texas. One night in Jefferson, Texas. Ozarks and Branson, Missouri. Return about August 10th. Glenn was having back problems during this time.
1993: Went to Australia in the Fall. Had sinus infections.
1994: No trips.
1995: No trips. Glenn had prostate cancer surgery in October.
1996: Nashville; Indiana; Ashville, North Carolina; Kentucky; Tennessee. They went to about 10-11 states. Went to see Lyndell Cosper and Jamie Pirtle. Jeannine’s kidney cancer surgery was in February (one kidney was removed).
(Note: As of 2001, the trips are very limited due to Jeannine’s Parkinson’s Disease limiting her energy level).
(Note: When were Florida, Georgia, playing golf with Bob in Australia, Maine, Vermont, New England states, Iowa, Lake Superior, Canada, and the time son Brian was in Army training?).
Vacation pennants that we bought during some of our trips:
|1960 trip to the Ozark Mountains|
|1957 - First major family vacation|
|Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico|
|Carlsbad Caverns (different year)|
|Monticello, Thomas Jefferson's|
|Dallas Cowboys football - late 60s|
|Fort Parker in Mexia, Texas|
|Mammoth Cave, in West Virginia|
1. Glenn relates the following story about the family vacation to Canada in 1965: "We were in Idaho on the way back home from Canada. We were going to walk down to a creek when we saw thousands of huge mosquitos coming towards us. We didn't get stung a lot because we made it back to the car."
2. Glenn said that he and Jeannine took a trip to Corpus with their kids (He didn’t remember how many kids at the time). Jeannine stayed at the motel while he took his daughter Jeannie on a fishing trip (jetty boat off the coast). Jeannie was very excited because someone caught a huge angelfish (Glenn’s estimate was about 1 ½ feet tall and 8" wide by hand measurement). Glenn said it was surprising what a variety of fish were caught on the trip. He also mentioned that there was a well endowed woman with a short blouse that was trying to attract his attention on the boat.
3. Glenn and Jeannine were staying in an A-Frame house at the bottom of a ski run in Red River, New Mexico. There was a friendly collie dog there. Their son Brian got sick (throat/ chest). (Note: Glenn wasn’t confident of which son it was that got sick). There was a doctor on the edge of town. There was a pebble size hail storm; the hail was falling like snow. They saw the same type of hail in Calgary, Canada. They went up to Banff, Canada after Calgary.
4. While in southern Colorado on vacation: They stayed in a cabin on the lake. Their son Bob was very sick (throat). The doctor gave him a shot of pennicillin. The hail was about 6 “ deep on the road and was very slick to drive on. The storm was ahead of them.
5. While on a vacation to the Texas coast with their children, Mary and Brian, they had to evacuate due to a coming hurricane. They stayed on the Interstate highway and it took until 3-4 am to get home.
6. While going to Big Bear Lake in California, Glenn and Jeannine’s car stalled out and began sliding backwards, even with the emergency brake set. They were climbing up the side of a mountain. If it hadn’t stopped, they would have had to back down about a mile. It was a several thousand foot drop.
Another version of the story: Most unpleasant vacation experience: One year on vacation, Glenn and Jeannine were driving up a mountain. The car vapor locked. Glenn couldn’t get it started and the brakes wouldn’t hold it and the car began rolling backwards. He finally got it started again, but it was a scary experience. This happened at Big Bear Lake east of San Bernadino, California. (Note: Billy remembers being in the back seat and watching gravel fall off the side of the mountain because the car was so close to the edge. The road was not paved and was very steep. It was a long way down looking out that back window).
7. When vacationing in Paris, France, Glenn and Jeannine went to a McDonald’s restaurant. They stocked up on food and then walked right on through the lobby of that ritzy hotel they were staying in. Jeannine said it “was the best food we had while in Paris.”
8. While on a vacation to Florida with their son, Brian: When they were returning from Florida, Glenn ran out of gas. There was a dirty black man with a baseball cap on sideways in a noisy, polluting truck that pulled up. He looked real rough. Glenn was nervous because there wasn’t much traffic on the road. The man poured the gasoline that he had into Glenn’s car, followed him to the gas station, waited while he filled up his car, and followed them for a few miles just to be sure they were OK before he left them. He would accept no money for his kindness or his gasoline. Glenn felt horrible because he “wouldn’t have stopped in ten years for that man if he was out of gas.” Glenn was shamed by the man’s kindness.
9. Billy got hit on the head with a wooden swing set at a motel at Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico when on vacation.
10. Rita (Digby) Locklin went on a Colorado trip with Glenn’s family when Mary Blair was little to help supervise her. Rita carried a large, “crescent moon” shaped white purse. Mary would stick her head into it and look so cute. They used two cameras to try to capture Mary’s expression on film.
11. Jim and Doris Sanders went with Glenn and Jeannine to Hawaii. The Sanders were celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary. They all had been drinking a little sock-E and when they got back to the Sanders cabin, Jim couldn’t fit the key in the keyhole. They had been drinking “sock-E”. Glenn and Jeannine were supposed to meet them back at their cabin to celebrate the anniversary at midnight, but they never showed up. Fell asleep or something else? Doris was walking on the beach in a sarong, so Glenn started calling her “barefoot and braless” all the time.
12. Jim and Doris Sanders were on a cruise with Glenn and Jeannine. They were drinking champane and Glenn was going to buy Jim a bottle. He said, “Just bring me another one of those” pointing to the champane. When he found out it cost $ 25.00 a bottle, he almost passed out.
13. Jeannine said that in the times that Glenn gambled (primarily on vacation in Las Vegas or when in college at U.T.), he would play penny ante poker or blackjack. He would limit himself to only spending
14. Jeannine Blair said she rode an elephant once, at the San Antonio zoo. She didn’t want to ride it, but felt like since Glenn had gone to all the trouble to plan everything, she needed to. She could hardly wait to get off that elephant. She said, “I liked the elephant just fine, as long as I wasn’t on him.’ (Source: Jeannine Blair, 9-22-05).
15. When Mary Blair was a child, she peered into Rita Digby’s large puse and fell inside. This happened on a family vacation in San Isabel National Forest in Colorado.
16. Jeannine Blair remembers Billy’s horse running away with him while on a family vacation in Arkansas. It was in the mountains at a place where there was a real cold natural swimming hole. Glenn was sore for 3-4 days due to chasing the horse Billy was on. Glenn’s stirrups were too long for his feet to fit in them, so he bounced up and down on the horse during the chase. Billy remembers the following about the incident: “I thought this incident had happened in the Grand Canyon. I remember the horse passing other horses on the narrow trail and seeing rocks fall off the side of the cliff as the horse passed. The incident began when I asked the trail guide how to slow my horse down because it was beginning to trot. The guide said, “Kick him!” I said, “I thought that was to speed the horse up”. He replied, “No, kick him and he will slow down.” I don’t know if the man was stupid or just mean, but I followed his instructions and kicked the fire out of that horse. He took off, passing the other horses. Finally, the trail opened up into a meadow and the horse stopped to feed on some grass. My dad caught up to us and the adventure ended.
17. Jeannine Blair remembers going on vacation with Glenn and their son Brian to Las Vegas, then to Colorado. This was when Brian was about ten years old. Glenn got down in his back real bad on that trip due to doing so much driving.
18. On a trip to San Antonio when Glenn and Jeannine’s kids were young, Jeannine rode an elephant at the San Antonio zoo. She did this, not because she wante to, but because Glenn had gone to so much trouble to plan the trip.
19. Glenn also talked about wanting to buy a silver "Streamline" trailer for vacations in the 1960s. He did buy a trailer at one point, but it was not a "Streamline".
20. Jeannine Blair remembers, "Glenn was riding a horse on vacation one summer while on vacation in Arkansas (while Mary Beth was a child). He couldn't walk for 2-3 days after that because he was so sore".
Examples of Glenn & Jeannine Blair’s Sense of Humor:
|Glenn & Jeannine: Love, Humor, and Fun!|
|Jeannine & Glenn acting silly at Christmas time.|
1. Glenn: “I haven’t seen a lelt-handed person worth killing yet, have you J.B.?" (Note: J.B. Farris. The left-handed person is Lee Pittman).
Lee: “God only made 10 % of all people left-handed so that they could supervise the remaining 90%". (Pause).
Glenn: “I’ve always heard that 10 % belongs to God, and the sooner he takes them, the better,”
(December 26, 1986)
2. Gale (Digby) Cosper told Jeannine one time when she was mad that “Glenn spoiled her.” I’m beginning to think now that she was right.
Glenn: “I’m spoilt, I know it and I like it.”
(March 1, 1992)
3. When Billy Blair was sick, Glenn was reading information off the medicine bottle which said, “...and restores health to cells.”
Glenn: “- and your cells are in a hell of a mess.”
(February 15, 1998)
4. Glenn: “I gonna find the dingwhinger for the whachamacallit.” (December 26, 1998)
5. Billy, Susan, Glenn, and Jeannine Blair were all watching the Steve Irwin “Crocodile Hunter” TV show. He was transporting a large, ugly crocodile.
Glenn: “Billy looks kinda like that crocodile.”
Jeannine: “It hurts my feelings that you say Billy looks like a crocodile.”
Glenn: “Well, maybe just half of him does.”
Jeannine: “Your half. My half of him turned out nice.”
(November 26, 2002)
6. Susan Blair was telling Glenn of her dropping a beautiful homemade apple pie on the floor.
Glenn: “If you’re gonna drop something on the floor, it should be vegetables, not apple pie.”
(November 26, 2002)
7. Billy (after Glenn had been asleep for a long time): “Did you have a good nap?”
Glenn: “I don’t know. I didn’t wake up to check.” (September 18, 2003)
8. Glenn (When talking with family members about past medical problems): ”I hate going to funerals, especially my own.” (December 26, 2004)
9. Jeannine Blair to Glenn: “You’re about as tough as a tadpole, a baby tadpole.” (May 1, 2004)
10. Glenn was talking about his physical check ups.
Jeannine: “Maybe you need to stay in the hospital.”
Glenn: “I’d stay if they feed me good. I need lots of meats and sweets.”
Jeannine: “Well, I’ve got lots of meat and I’m real sweet.”
(August 29, 2003)
11. The family doctor for Glenn and Jeannine’s family was Dr. Rex Kirkley in Belton. His nurse’s name was Miss Wells. Glenn would always call her “Street”; they would always kid around with each other and play practical jokes. One day, he bought her some lingerie and kidded her about running away together (while Jeannine was sitting in the waiting room).
12. Jeannine: “I don’t know why Glenn keeps me around.” (When she was having a lot of physical problems)
Glenn: “A man should always have something he’s afraid of.”
13. Frances Marie Wheeler (“Marie”) was a customer at Cochran, Blair, and Potts Department store in Belton, Texas with Glenn. She would always kid Glenn about being her “boyfriend”. Glenn was a kidder also, so he would kid back with her. One day Glenn said, “Give me a hug, but make it quick. My wife is in the store.”
14. Glenn to Gale (Digby) Cosper: “I’m gonna find you a tobacco chewin’ cowboy”.
(Source: Gale Cosper on Saturday, June 30, 2005).
15. When Glenn would be asleep and suddenly wake up, he would look around and then say, “I was just resting my eyes”.
(Source: Billy Blair, June 30, 2005).
16. Glenn would sometimes say, “Flat as a fritter”.
17. One time, Glenn and Jeannine were taking a Defensive Driving class in order to get lower insurance rates. The instructor was going around the room having everyone make a comment as to why they were there. A portion of Jeannine’s comment was to say that she “never had a ticket in 50 some odd years”. Everyone, including the instructor, was very impressed. Glenn’s turn was next. He said, “The reason she can say that is because she makes me do all the driving”. (Source: Jeannine Blair on July 30, 2005).
18. Jeannine Blair said (following a comment by Glenn about her wearing tight blue jeans when he met her), “My autobiography would be titled From tight blue jeans to loose moo moos.” (Source: Jeannine Blair on November 27, 2003). In January, 2008, when Billy Blair reminded Jeannine of this comment, she said, “Maybe you better update that to “... tight moo moos”.
19. Several family members were sitting in Glenn and Jeannine Blair’s living room watching a Dallas Cowboy football game. The conversation in the room was about the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders. Jeannine (talking about the TEAM) said, “They have good tight ends this year.” Everyone thought she was still talking about the cheerleaders and got a good laugh out of it. (Source: Jeannine Blair on November 26, 2003).
20. While looking at wedding shower photos of Lauren and Seth Hickman’s friends who were dating, Jeannine said, “Glenn had a lot of girlfriends at U.T.” Glenn replied, “Yeah, your mom has been real nice letting me keep photos of those girls and even a couple of letters.” Jeannine then said, “At least those girls were in your past.” Glenn replied, “Everyone needs some past.” (Glenn and Jeannine Blair, June 8, 2001).
21. Glenn: “Mom can’t do her hair at all” (due to pain in her shoulder).
Billy: “I do a great job doing my hair.” (because it’s so short).
Glenn (who is 3/4's bald): “I go to a hair specialist. I’ve got very few hairs and they’ve got to be protected”.
22. When he was a child, Glenn used to call himself “Swivel hip Blair, the Holland flash”. He was just kidding around because he never played a day of football in his life. Jeannine said he called himself that because he ran so fast from school going home for lunch each day.
23. Glenn said, “I’d like to live to be 95 and then get shot by a jealous husband.”(Dec. 29, 2001).
24. Jeannie (Blair) Pittman left some ice cream sandwiches in Jeannine Blair’s freezer while she went with her sister Mary to Shreveport, Louisiana. Jeannie told her mother and aunt, Gale Cosper that they could eat them if they wanted to:
Jeannine to son Billy - “I don’t know if we should eat them or not”.
Billy - “Well mom, you know that possession is 9/10's of the law”.
Jeannine - “Especially when it’s in your stomach!”
(Source: Jeannine Blair on October 7, 2005).
25. Jeannine accidentally bent one of Glenn’s golf clubs on a tree and forgot to tell him about it. When Glenn found out about it much later, he said, “Now I know why I’ve been hitting the ball so bad.” (Source: Jeannine Blair on October 3, 2005).
26. Glenn said, “Thank God for football season. There’s finally something to watch on television.” (Source: Jeannine Blair on 10-29-05).
27. Lee Pittman remembers reaching for food on Glenn’s plate and Glenn saying, “Boy, you keep doing that and you’ll pull back a nub!”
28. Mary (Blair) Farris said that Glenn would tell the girls that if a boy ever gave them any trouble just to pull the hair on his legs. Then the girls would give Glenn a hard time because his legs were bald (implying that he must have given girls a LOT of trouble).
29. Jeannine remembers a time when Glenn was having the wooden floors in the old courts at Hill Top Courts replaced with concrete. When the old floors were ripped up, about half a dozen frogs were found under the floor. Glenn brought them home to show Jeannine. It was Jeannine’s normal routine to have coffee at aunt Cody Hyer’s home occasionally. She decided to put the frogs in a fruitcake box and go to Cody’s house for coffee. Cody fixed the coffee and Jeannine said, “I brought some fruitcake”. She opened the box and Cody reached down into the box for some cake. When she touched the frogs, she let out a loud scream, which scared Jeannine half to death. Jeannine said, “I’m sorry Cody; I’ll never do it again.” Cody was mad and Jeannine didn’t blame her for being mad about it. (Source: Jeannine Blair, January 1, 2006).
An additional note about Cody (Digby) Hyer from Jeannine Blair: “We would go drink coffee at aunt Cody’s home after dropping the kids off at school. My daughter Mary would go with me sometimes. She remembers Cody serving lemon waffer cookies, which were brown around the edges.” (Mary said on 12-31-06 that the frog incident must have happened before her birth).
30. Glenn would always tell relatives “It’ll cost you a quarter” if they asked to talk to Jeannine on the phone or use the bathroom at their home. Occasionally, someone would leave a quarter on the back of the toilet just for fun. (Source: Rita Locklin, November 28, 2005).
31. Jeannine to Gale Cosper: “It’s 10 pm. I better go to bed or I’ll turn into a pumpkin.”
Gale (laughing): “You’re supposed to turn into Cinderella, not the pumpkin!”
Jeannine: “I’d turn into the pumpkin.”
(Source: Jeannine Blair & Gale Cosper, November 28, 2005).
32. Glenn would always call the red tool shed in the back yard “the mother in law apartment.” (Source: Susan Blair, November 28, 2005).
33. Jeannine Blair used to say, “Hell’s bells!” (especially when having a bad golf shot).
34. Glenn to Jeannine: “You’re a good girl. But there’s not much need for good girls”. Jeannine said that Glenn’s father, H.O. Blair, was even worse than Glenn regarding funny “one liners” such as this.
35. Jeannine: “I’m so mad I could spit worms!” (November 10, 2006).
36. On Saturday, August 23, 2008, J.B. Farris and his family were helping Jeannine move from her home at 504 East 24th Avenue in Belton to a Garden Estates assisted living apartment in Temple. During this move, he decided to go to Best Buy and buy her a new TV set. He and his daughters returned with a new TV, TV stand, .... for Jeannine. He looked at her and said, “Hey, I got you a discount at Best Buy. I told them you were a 78 year old former Cabaret dancer!” Jeannine said, “What?!” to which J.B. replied, “You might want to stay out of Best Buy for a while”. (Of course, he was just kidding. At least, I think he was just kidding). Also, this same day, J.B. and Gale Cosper went into The Bargain Barn in Belton to buy a bed frame. When they came out, J.B.’s wife Mary was there. Gale turned to Mary and said, “How long have you been married to him?!” Mary responded by saying, “Are you telling me that I better avoid The Bargain Barn for a while?” Gale said, “It might not be a bad idea”.
37. May 15, 2003 was Glenn’s 80th birthday. A birthday party was being help for him at noon at Pittman’s Cleaners in Belton. Glenn said to Jeannine, “I’m almost middle aged”. He also went to get his glasses checked and the lady waiting on him had his same birthday - she was 37. Glenn said, “I’m not that old yet”.
38. September 5, 2009 Jeannine Blair comments during a visit from Billy and Susan Blair:
a. She informed us that Garden Estates was going to have a variety show in November to raise funds. She is going to wear the orange “Hooters” T-shirt (that has “Bubbles” written on the back) that J.B. Farris gave her for Christmas one year along with black leotards and a short skirt. She’s not going to “perform”, but might carry a tray or blow bubbles or something as long as she’s able to stand up.
b. When talking with Lauren Hickman on the phone (Note: Lauren is two weeks away from delivering her first child), Jeannine said, “Lauren, that baby is ruining your appearance”.
c. Jeannine was introducing Billy to a lady at Garden Estates. The woman told Billy that he looked a lot like his mother. Jeannine said, “Yeah, we’re both chubby”. Billy said, “Thanks, mom” since there were many people in the lobby at the time she said it.
39. Jeannine said to Susan Blair in their living room at 504 E. 24th Ave. in Belton, “You’re my favorite daughter-in-law in the living room”. She thought about it a minute, then said, “When you have more than one, you have to watch what you say”.
40. In January, 2013 at the Blair family Christmas party in Belton, Susan Blair asked Jeannine what she would like to get as a present. Jeannine replied, "Money!" Lee Pittman responded by saying to the family, "Your mother has raised a whole pack of thieves".
41. Jeannine Blair was talking to Lauren (Blair) Hickman about reusing things. We were cleaning the breakfast table of paper plates (at Jeannine's home on 24th avenue in Belton) and Lauren said to Jeannine, "Don' t you want to reuse it?" (We had just had egg cassarole with picante sauce, so the paper plate was soaked through). Jeannine replied, "I have my limits". (Source: Billy Blair, January 5, 2008).
42. Cindy (Digby) Smith posted the following memory of Glenn on Facebook on June 19, 2016: "One of my favorite memories of him was when he let Mary(Blair) and I watch the Miss America pageant. He would say, 'She won't win cause she has doughy hips'".
a. “Tough as a government mule.” (Source: Jeannine Blair 4-24-05).
b. “What do you want, six months in the hospital or the graveyard?” (Holding up one fist at a time). (Source: Billy and Susan Blair 4-24-05).
c. “Stop stealing my stuff, you galldarn horse thieves.” (Source: Susan Blair 4-24-05).
d. “I’m having a running fit.” (Going nuts). (Source: Billy and Susan Blair 4-24-05). He would also say, “I’m having a ka-nip-tion fit”.
e. “Let me let you talk to my social secretary.” (After talking on the phone for a minute, he would pass the phone to his wife). (Source: Billy and Susan Blair 4-24-05).
f. “Where’s my supper?” (Source: Billy and Susan Blair 4-24-05).
g. “Get outta my hair, you hound dog.” (Source: Billy and Susan Blair 4-24-05).
h. “You no-count, good for nothing...” (Source: Billy and Susan Blair 4-24-05).
i. He would play the “crocodile’s gonna get you” game in the hot tub, which was to pinch you with his toes. (Source: Billy and Susan Blair 4-24-05).
j. “I’m a ding dong daddy from Dumas.” (Source: Billy and Susan Blair 4-24-05).
k. “You old whipper snapper.” (Source: Billy and Susan Blair 4-24-05).
l. He would often say he didn’t like “rabbit food”, referring to lettuce and vegetables. (Source: Billy and Susan Blair 4-24-05).
m. “That will make you throw rocks at your grandmother.” (Source: Billy and Susan Blair 4-24-05).
n. “You goddarn water moccassin.” He also said, “I’m a mean water moccassin.” (Source: Billy and Susan Blair 4-24-05).
o. “That lousy, good for nothing son of a buck.” (Not a compliment). (Source: Billy and Susan Blair 4-24-05).
p. “She’s got a good set of lungs.” (Referring to both his wife and Dolly Pardon on TV). (Source: Mary Farris 4-25-05).
q. “Boooooy...” Then he would square up to me with fists doubled and say “What do you want, six months in the hospital or the graveyard?” (Source: Josh Pittman 5-7-05).
r. Calling people “Rastus”. (Source: Josh Pittman 5-7-05).
s. “He’s a ring-tailed tooter” (Source: Billy Blair 2005).
t. Children and grandchildren would always try to sit in Glenn’s recliner when he went to the kitchen.... It was like a challenge to the king/ a usurper of the throne. Glenn would come back and run the kids out of his chair. He would have a different response to boys and girls: To boys, he would use a deep voice and say, “Boooy, you better get outta my chair!” When girls sat in the chair, he would say in a normal voice, “Look at her! Do you see who’s sitting in my chair?” It was a fun, expected game that several of us played on visits (Source: Susan Blair 2005).
u. “I’m a mean Mex-can!” (Source: Billy Blair 2005).
v. Glenn would often tell Jeannine, “That’s a hokey TV show”, but would then let her watch it anyway (Source: Jeannine Blair 2005).
w. “I’m rough, tough, and mean enough” (Source: Jeannine Blair 2005).
x. Glenn always told Mary (Blair) Farris’ daughters, Christy and Emily, to take the fourth piece of bread in the loaf because it was the freshest. (Source: Mary Farris 12-2006).
y. “You and I are going to fist city”. (Source: Billy Blair 1-14-06).
z. “That’s got a good scald on it.” (If food was particularly good). (Source: Billy Blair, 1-5-08).
aa. “I’m just resting my eyes” (when he would wake up from a nap) (Source: Jeannine Blair, 3-4-06).
bb. One of Glenn’s favorite expressions was, “gall durn !” (Source: Jeannine Blair, March 4, 2006).
cc. “Flat as a fritter”.
dd. “Those gall darn squirrels !” (When he saw a squirrel carrying one of the peaches from his peach tree in it’s mouth).
ee. “She’s nuttier than a peach orchard bore”. (Source: Jeannie Pittman, 6-13-09). (Note: Jeannine Blair said she heard Glenn say this many times).
ff. One of Glenn’s expressions for other people was to call them a “Hon - yok (y-ah-k)”.
gg. When Glenn was losing weight, he would tell others, “Do you see my girlish figure coming back?” (Source: Susan Blair, 10-1-10).
hh. “You’re crusin’ for a bruisin’”. (Source: Billy Blair, 3-11-11).
ii. Two of Glenn’s favorite words were “Little Bits” (a name he used to call our daughter Lauren) and “honeyfussin’”, which is a term he used for affection.
jj. Glenn liked cornbread in ice cold buttermilk. He would say, "That's larapin!" ("Larapin" is a mid western, southern term commonly used to describe tasty po' folk food).
kk. Glenn would always say "scans" (sk - ahns) for the word "pecans". (Source: Susan Blair, 2017).
ll. Glenn had a gift for always being able to calm an upset infant down by walking with the child on his shoulder while singing "Bye-O, Bye-O, Ba-by. Bye-O, Bye-O, Bye", which was his comfort song. (Source: Susan Blair, 2017).
Antique Blair Glassware:
|THE BLAIR ANTIQUES|
Passed to a male Blair descendant since 1845.
There are four pieces in this set of glassware: ( 1. candy dish, sugar dish, or waste dish. 2. creamer. 3. covered sugar dish. 4. covered butter dish). It is pressed glass and has no visible identification marks. As of 2013, the gold leaf is still on the majority of the pieces. The history of the pieces is as follows:
1. John Blair (Married to Margaret (“Peggy”) (McCall) Blair): They either bought the pieces or received them from someone else, family or friend.
2. William McCall Blair (Married to Mary Ann (Kirby) Blair): Received the pieces on their wedding day on August 17, 1845 from William’s parents, John & Margaret (McCall) Blair. William and Mary were married in Benton county (now Calhoun county), Alabama. They were married by Justice of the Peace, Robert McCain. William enlisted in the Civil War in January, 1861, just seven months prior to Mary Ann’s death. He was in the 51st Alabama Cavalry (“Dudley’s Home Rangers”), which was one of the most heavily engaged units in the Civil War. He is buried in the Moody cemetery in Moody, Texas in McLennan county next to his second wife, Sarah E. Embry and Mary Ann Kirby’s sister.
3. Robert Thomas Blair (“R.T.”) (Married to Sallie (Whatley) Blair): Received them from parents William McCall Blair and Mary Ann (Kirby) Blair. At this point, a generation was skipped and Robert Thomas Blair gave them to his grandson, Aubrey Lee Blair (“Aubrey”). R.T. was a mild mannered “good as gold” farmer in Central Texas. He is buried in the Holland cemetery at Holland, Texas (Bell county).
4. Aubrey Lee Blair (“Aubrey”) (Married to Lucille (Caudle) Blair): We are not quite sure why a generation was skipped; It is probable that R.T. gave the glassware to Aubrey simply because they were so close. Aubrey received the glassware initially when he was fifteen years old. When asked if he wanted them, Aubrey asked his grandfather to hold them for him for a while. Shortly after this, Aubrey’s home in Holland, Texas burned to the ground. Aubrey lived in the Houston, Texas area and later in Belton, Texas. He served as an M.P. (Military Policeman) in the Army during World War II and then spent many years working for the Postal Service in Houston. Aubrey’s kindness and sense of humor were always a joy to the family. Aubrey’s second wife was Mary (Thompson) Blair.
5. William Lee Blair (“Billy”) (Married to Susan (Thornton) Blair): In early spring, 1977, Aubrey passed the glassware to Billy at a family gathering at Billy and Susan’s home on 31st street in Waco, Texas (McLennan county). The note Billy received with the glassware reads: “Antique Serving Pieces - Given to William M. Blair and Mary Ann Kirby as a wedding gift 17th day of August, 1848 by his father and mother, John and Margaret Blair. This is to be passed on to another male Blair descendant so as to preserve the heritage and tradition already begun.” (It should be noted that the wedding license confirms William and Mary Blair’s wedding year as 1845, not 1848). The glassware went with Billy’s family from Waco to Ft. Worth, Texas at the end of July, 1978. They later moved from Ft. Worth to Granbury,Texas in May, 1991. Billy served as youth minister in several churches prior to working with his wife at Happy Hill Farm Academy/ Home in Granbury, which is a treatment center for young people who have academic, behavioral, and emotional issues. Following this position, Billy worked in libraries in Fort Worth, Texas.
6. Robert Glenn Blair (“Glenn”) (Married to Jeannine (Digby) Blair): On Saturday, February 8, 1997, Billy Blair and his son Will presented the glassware to Billy’s father, Glenn Blair, at his home in Belton, Texas (504 E. 24th Avenue). This happened quietly following their 50th wedding anniversary party. The following letter accompanied the glassware:
Will and I would like to present you with the “Blair Antiques” which have been handed to a male Blair since 1845. We have discussed it at length and both feel as though our family’s history needs to reflect your ownership of this glassware. You were the person who sparked my interest in family history; this interest has resulted in a broadening of our sense of “family” and “history”. It is a mistake if our family bypasses your contribution to our “family” stability. The primary reason we want you to have them is that we love you dearly and we can’t think of any greater way to show you. When we look at the pieces, we will always think of the way you have always been there for us as well as all the silliness that kept us going when times were tough. When you are finished with your time with the glassware, we would like to stipulate that the pieces return to us. The intention is to pass them to Will Blair (hopefully by his dad, if I’m still here)". Below is a brief history of the antique pieces:” (Note: repeat of the above information on history).
Glenn, after being valedictorian of his high school class at Holland, Texas, attended the University of Texas in Austin in the field of electrical engineering. He worked on the electrical system of the B-36 bomber at Consolidated-Vultee in Ft. Worth during World War II. He was in the trucking business with his father and brother, ran an insurance agency, ran a trailer court called “Hill Top Courts” in Belton, and spent many years working at the First National Bank in Belton. After resigning as President of that bank and building a new bank on the location in Belton where he and his wife initially dated, he retired to a life of golf (except for jobs at Cochran, Blair, and Potts Department store and Pittman Cleaners in Belton that he had during his 3-4 attempts at retirement). Glenn will always be remembered for his loving devotion to his wife, his hysterical sense of humor, his love for his family, and his community service which made Belton a much nicer place to live. Glenn died of respiratory failure on March 14, 2005. His ashes were scattered in a beautiful field across from his home in Belton by his wife, children, and grandchildren. His son Billy returned the Antiques to his home in Granbury, Texas on April 15, 2005 with the intent to pass them on to his son at a future date. (Note: Billy broke with tradition in two ways: First, he did not pass the antiques to a descendant only, but to his father as well. Billy is also the only person to have received the glassware on two different occasions).
7. William Lee Blair (“Billy”): Second time to own them. After the death of Billy’s dad, the glassware was returned to Billy to eventually be passed down to his son. He picked the glassware up at his parent's home on April 15, 2005 and brought it to his home. When Billy and Susan Blair were fired from Happy Hill Farm Academy after almost 20 years of service there during the summer of 2010 and moved to Fort Worth, Texas to live with their children, the glassware was stored in one of three storage buildings at “All Storage” on Bryant Irvin road in Fort Worth, Texas until they could buy another home. In 2011, Billy and Susan moved to 3774 Cornish Avenue in Fort Worth, Texas. This is where the glassware currently resides.
8. William Scott Blair (“Will”): After calling my daughter on October 29, 2016 and asking her if she wanted to be present when I gave the antiques to Will, I presented them to him at his home in Round Rock, Texas at 2 pm on October 30, 2016 after being their caretaker for almost 40 years. I wanted him to enjoy them while I was still around and wanted his sons to always remember them being in their home as they were growing up.
(NOTE: There is a separate blog post about the "Glenn & Jeannine Blair Family at Hill Top Courts" in Belton, Texas).
Memories at the Glenn & Jeannine Blair Home
504 East 24th Avenue in Belton, Texas
(They lived here from 1971....).
(They lived here from 1971....).
|Glenn & Jeannine Blair home at 504 East 24th Avenue, Belton, Texas.|
(View is SW to NE).
According to Dwayne Digby, his father Mart used to call this area of Belton "silk stocking hill".
|Blueprint for 504 East 24th Avenue. Belton, Texas.|
|Simplified drawing of 504 East 24th Avenue floor plan on graph paper.|
1. In 1971, Glenn had a new house built by the Leon Valley Golf Course in Belton; he paid $ 45,000.00 cash for it. Mr. & Mrs. Roy Potts owned the 504 East 24th avenue lot, which was next to their home. Mr. Potts approached Glenn to buy it. Glenn and Jeannine considered other lots before finally deciding to build the home at 504 East 24th Avenue:
A. Miller Heights area behind the highway building. Jeannine wanted this location because of its beautiful trees. The area is now a low rent district.
B. The Kelly Britt home on Main street in Belton, across from Minimax and Wal Mart (before the super Wal Mart existed in 2004).
C. The land that Joe Pirtle owned across the street from the East 24th Avenue lot they eventually bought.
2. One year, a tornado hit at Hwy. 317 and the Little River bridge. This is very close to Glenn and Jeannine’s home. They both got into the bathtub with mattresses.
3. Glenn pulled several square nails out of the large oak trees in his front yard.
4. Playing with kids in the hot tub, Thanksgiving meals at the dining room and kitchen tables, and celebrating Christmas with the family Chinese gift exchange in the enclosed garage (with carpet) will be favorite memories.
5. On June 4, 2007 Jeannine Blair recalled the following: Glenn had always gotten his hair cut at Jackson’s Barber Shop behind the old First National Bank on Central Avenue. Later on, when Glenn was almost bald, he began getting his hair cut at Tom’s Barber Shop instead because it only cost him $ 5.00. He told Ernest Jackson that he just charged too much for a haircut. Mr. Jackson replied, “I charge $ 5.00 to cut it and
$ 5.00 to find it”.
6. Jeannine Blair said that Glenn enjoyed playing the Intellivision and Atari video games so much that he would constantly tap his toe from the excitement of the games.
|Glenn Blair letter in 1986 requesting repair for his|
Intellivision Entertainment System.
7. On Saturday, August 23, 2008 Jeannine began moving things into an apartment at Garden Estates assisted living facility in Temple, Texas off the old lake road. She is excited about moving to the apartment because of people she knows who live there and the fact that she won’t have to worry about all the things to keep up with at the house on 24th Avenue in Belton. She signed the papers for the apartment this past Tuesday. She won’t have her telephone and cable installed until next Thursday, so she will probably move in sometime after that. She has lived in the home on 24th Avenue since 1971. It will be a big transition for the family in terms of memories shared there. Her new address at Garden Estates is 5320 Loop 205, Apt. # 155. Temple, Texas 76502. Phone number is (254) 231-3853. (Note: She had her previous phone number 817-939-2345 for the past 60 years).
8. Bobby Blair said that his father, Glenn Blair, was the only person he ever knew who solved the Rubik’s Cube puzzle without reading the instructions. (Note: Glenn was very proud when he finally solved it and I believe he wanted to leave the cube in a “finished” state, but one of the relatives scrambled it all up again soon after he solved it).
General Memories of Belton, Texas
1. Charlie Griggs told Bobby Blair about Glady’s Hamburger stand over at Griggs Equipment Company. This was for the company’s employees. Charlie and Bobby would eat lunch there during school. All the other kids found out about it and started eating there.
2. Glenn stated that in the 1930's, the kids in Holland, Texas saw Belton as a boring place. Half of the homes in Belton were empty. The cotton mill in Belton had closed. Perhaps this and the Great Depression were the reasons for this problem. (Note: The cotton mill was located in the two-story Griggs Equipment Company building. They also had several homes for their employees in the area). You could rent a house for $ 10.00 to $ 15.00 a month. There were two theaters in Belton at the time, but one of them got very little business.
3. Joe and Lula Smith owned “Smith’s Grocery” north of Hill Top Courts on Main street. Their sons, Joe and Cecil, also worked in the store. Glenn Blair would buy all of his meat (a whole shopping cart full) for his big family Bar-B-Ques here. There was also an old laundrymat across the street that I remember my mom taking us to a few times when I was a small child.
4. July 4th in Belton (as remembered by Jeannine Blair in May, 2009):
A. Mary Dean Carpenter, Owen P. Carpenter’s wife, used to sing for The White Horse Band (a band that sang off a flatbed truck that went different places to play). She was crippled with rheumatoid arthritus for a lot of her life.
B. After the July 4th parade, everyone would go to Yettie Polk Park. You could see the Natatorium across the creek. They had a sandy area there and the swimmers would lay on the sand with their blankets. The Natatorium was always a busy place on July 4th.
Misc. Memories with an unsure timeline
1. Glenn went on a fishing trip with Bernice Lee Moore (later Maners), H.O., and Lynn Moore. They were fishing on a river that feeds into Buchanan Lake. Glenn had bacon and eggs and got poisoning from it. They had to bring him home that night. (Note: I believe this happened in the early portion of his life).
2. Glenn got sick from a shot he received at Scott and White hospital.
3. In November, 2002, Glenn said that once he went to a Sportsman Club game dinner and ate some crow (literally). The more he chewed it, the bigger it got. Tough meat!! He had to spit it into a napkin.
4. Jeannine Blair said that one time she threw a wet wash rag at Glenn and that he got very angry. She said, “ It was the last time I ever did that”.
5. Jeannine said that Glenn would always call dryish cornbread “flyaway cornbread” because it was dry and would break up. He told Ida Mae this and she would always tell him, “Mister Blair, I made you another pan of that flyaway cornbread.” Ida Mae also gave Jeannine the recipe for “cracker pie”, which was made with saltine crackers and a type of merrainge.
7. Jeannine recalled that all the children at First Christian Church in Belton, including hers, would go out to the Fulwiler place in Belton to hunt Easter eggs on Easter.
8. Glenn liked Mexican food such as enchiladas, but did not like tamales. He also liked to eat brains and he liked to put ketchup on his scambled eggs.
(Note: The following are from the “Memory Book”
that Glenn & Jeannine filled out for Lauren and Will Blair in 1998):
3. Glenn never had an imaginary friend.
4. Glenn didn’t remember being punished very often.
5. Glenn remembers being at uncle Bill Swan’s home. His cousin, Bob Sutton and him got hold of some of uncle Bill’s chewing tobacco. His brother Aubrey and cousin J.E. told them after they chewed it, they were supposed to swallow it. He and Bob were really sick when they followed this advice.
6. Glenn’s mother and his brother Aubrey picked up clothes to be cleaned for a cleaners in Bartlett and Glenn’s mother sold Avon for a while. This was to earn a little extra money after Glenn’s dad left the family.
7. Glenn envied the boys who played sports because he was little and couldn’t participate. In high school, he envied some of the guys who had old cars.
8. First movie seen: One summer, a company put up sort of a roofless tent and showed black and white, silent movies. The first color movie was “Gone With the Wind”; Glenn was a senior in high school at the time.
9. Favorite meal: Glenn said, “I was just glad to have a meal. Meat was usually served on Sunday only. I liked my mom’s sugar cookies and an occasional pecan pie. Food was pretty scarce at times.”
10. Glenn stated that the only famous people he met as a child were just the county judge and local people.
11. First time to watch TV: Glenn and his father watched one game of the World Series on a man’s TV on Taylor’s Valley road in Belton, Texas about 1950.
12. Glenn said he had no special girlfriends until college, but his wife Jeannine questioned this comment.
13. Valentine’s Day: We usually gave a few of our favorite girls a little Valentine card. We couldn’t afford much celebration.
14. Glenn didn’t remember his first kiss.
15. Glenn’s grandfather, Hilry Swan, was a good fisherman. His family used to have fish fries.
16. Glenn’s favorite subject was Math. His least favorite class was art because he couldn’t keep the water color from running and that didn’t go well with Glenn’s perfectionism.
17. Glenn’s favorite pet was a greyhound dog that his father took to races occasionally.
20. Outside chores: Glenn worked in the yard and garden. He raised a pig in school. His family had a cow, but Glenn didn’t milk it.
21. Glenn’s sister, Bertie Pearl, once got mad and threw a brick at him. He still has the scar.
22. Childhood illnesses: Glenn had diptheria when he was a baby and almost died. He also had an ulcer on his eyeball and had chronic ear infections. These affected his sight and hearing. These illnesses made him tougher after he endured them.
23. Crazy nicknames of people in your school: “Nip” Goodnight.
24. When growing up, Glenn went to the Baptist church in Holland, Texas.
25. Writings Glenn was proud of: A really special history notebook and his valedictorian speech from high school that Jeannine still has.
26. Glenn and Claude T. Brockett had a treehouse together. Claude was the Methodist preacher’s son. Girls weren’t welcome very often.
27. Glenn got bitten a few times by dogs when he was riding his bike.
29. Military service in the family: Glenn’s brother, Aubrey, was in the Army during World War II. He was a military policeman (M.P.) on passenger trains that carried troops and worked out of Houston. Glenn couldn’t serve due to physical problems, but he worked on the electrical system of the B-36 bomber at Consolidated-Vultee in Ft. Worth.
30. Glenn graduated from Holland High School in Holland, Texas in May, 1940 as valedictorian. He worked hard to be valedictorian; it was a fond memory for him. There were about 25-30 kids in his graduating class. Homework was given at the school.
31. Glenn didn’t play a musical instrument.
32. Keepsakes: A Texas history workbook; a tie his father gave him when he was sick; awards he got at school; a valentine; postcards from a California trip (INSERT PHOTOS).
33. Campout: Glenn remembers a camping trip to San Saba, Texas. This was the closest thing they ever had for a vacation.
34. First job: After college, Glenn worked at Consolidated-Vultee in Ft. Worth, Texas. Earlier, he picked cotton, mowed grass, and helped take inventory at the lumber yard. Paid how much?: About 50 cents for mowing his Aunt Opal’s yard and as little as a quarter for some jobs.
35. Glenn couldn’t get water in his ears because of chronic infections, so he didn’t swim. Billy remembers Glenn floating in the Salt Lake in Utah because of the high salt concentration in the water; Glenn seemed very proud of that moment and was glad it was recorded on the family films.
36. Favorite memory of his father: Glenn’s dad took him and his brother Aubrey on a trip to California when Glenn was about 19 years old. They had a good trip.
37. Good advice given by father: Glenn’s father told him to “buy good things and then take care of them.”
38. Glenn went barefoot a lot - even to school some until it got cold. He doesn’t go barefoot in his “second childhood” now though.
39. Glenn got a bicycle for Christmas when he was about 12 years old; he rode it lots of places.
40. Glenn’s first car was a 1946 Maroon Ford. Cars weren’t easy to get at that time because World War II hadn’t been over long and manufacture of cars was slow. He was really proud of it and took very good care of it.
|Example of a 1946 maroon Ford car.|
|1946 Ford Ad|
National Geographic Mag.
42. Glenn went to the Bell county, Texas county fair near Little River, Texas. In 1936, at the 100th year celebration of Texas Independence, a bunch of people from Holland, Texas rode the train to Dallas to the State Fair.
43. Biggest fish caught: Glenn caught a buffalo fish that was pretty big at Buchanan Dam after he was married to Jeannine.
44. Glenn remembers taking a nickel to his uncle Edwin Blair’s store and buying lots of candy. It took forever for them to pick it out.
45. Glenn used to eat cold bisquits by punching a hole in them and filling it with syrup.
46. Glenn rode a train and a bus. Glenn and Jeannine’s first plane trip was to Hawaii in 1974.
47. Childhood home: Glenn lived in a big, tall roofed house in Holland, Texas. It burned down and they built a two bedroom house on the same lot. They had a storm cellar and a big cedar tree in the front yard.
48. Glenn’s neighborhood when growing up had other frame houses nearby. He had a big yard. They would walk the few blocks to town and church. He was over ½ mile from school, and would run home at noon to eat lunch.
49. Glenn drove a truck when he and Jeannine were first married; he was gone a lot. He played pente Ante poker in college.
50. Best talent: Was a good student, especially Mathematics. He is good at teaching others. He was a good debater (Jeannine says he still likes to argue). A good handyman.
51. Glenn picked up a towel at his grandmother’s house to dry his face and a stinging scorpion stung him three times.
52. Sometimes there were grass fires that Glenn and other adults put out. Glenn’s home burned down when he was a child. His mother was in the hospital and the kids were staying with relatives. They lost everything.
53. Jeannine remembers Glenn telling about how two boys turned over outhouses as a Halloween prank.
54. V.J. Day (Victory in Japan in World War II): Glenn was on a date when the news came. He went into Ft. Worth to see if people were celebrating like the radio said was happening in the big cities.
55. Glenn started school when he was five years old. His brother Aubrey was in charge of taking him to school. As soon as they got there, he left Glenn to fend for himself.
56. Glenn said the football players liked to “bully” little “bookworm” kids like him.
57. School “recess” involved unsupervised play, getting a drink and going to the bathroom. There was no playground equipment at the school.
58. Glenn’s family had a very limited wardrobe and were lucky to have anything to wear to school.
59. Glenn thought he was the smartest kid in school. He worked very hard to learn. There were many farm boys who missed a lot of school and weren’t very smart.
60. Glenn said the teachers didn’t put up with anything in class. The teachers had control back then. He had a cousin, Bob Sutton, who was about the worst kid he can remember for being naughty.
61. Some teachers didn’t show favoritism, but sometimes Glenn felt that he was the “teacher’s pet” because they knew he was interested in learning.
62. Schools attended: Holland elementary; (There was no Jr. High); Holland High School; University of Texas in Austin.
63. Grade School teachers you remember: Felicia Jones; Inez Cowan; Connie Mewhinney; Mary Van Ness.
64. High School teachers you remember: R.B. Fox; Inez Cowan; Alton Marshall; James Cowan.
65. Typical school dress style: Overalls in elementary school. Sometimes bare-footed, tennis shoes. In high school: cotton pants and shirts.
66. Worst report card: Glenn always had good grades. His mother tells the story about an unsatisfactory grade in Art. Glenn couldn’t keep his water colors from running, so he wouldn’t turn it in. He made his only “C”.
67. Felicia Jones (Math teacher) was his best teacher. She made learning interesting and cared about us succeeding.
68. Holland, Texas school colors were Purple and Gold.
69. School mascot was the Holland Hornets.
70. Glenn didn’t play sports, but he watched the football games.
71. Glenn said there were mostly single women teaching him and sometimes the teacher might make a few eyes (flirt) with the boys.
72. There was no money for allowances.
73. Worst teacher: One of Glenn’s teachers told him he sounded like a frog when he sang, so he didn’t care much for her. (Note: Glenn has a nice voice; the teacher mistook Glenn’s voice for his brother Aubreys. Glenn didn’t sing for many years because of what this teacher said).
74. After Glenn and Jeannine were married and living at Hill Top Courts in Belton, Glenn had a few dealings with some BIG rats. They were big enough to let alone, so he set some big traps for them.
75. Glenn walked to/ from school.
76. Glenn said his mother must have made his shirts and they must have bought the rest. He never went shopping until his father bought him a suit to graduate from high school. Clothes were few.
77. High school cheerleaders wore short skirts and sweaters.
78. Glenn’s favorite school cheer:
“Nigger nigger hoe potato - Half past an alligator
Rim Ram Bullagator - Chickey Ah Cha
Holland, Holland - Rah, Rah, Rah”
(Jeannine - “Isn’t that awful? Couldn’t say that now”).
79. Glenn’s graduating class had a 50th reunion in 1990 in Holland, Texas. Very nice.
80. Glenn played “Humpty-Dumpty” and was dressed in a costume made out of cardboard.
81. On Halloween, the boys did a little mischief stuff, but no “trick or treating”.
82. When Glenn was born in 1923, Warren G. Harding was President of the United States.
83. Glenn saw Vice President Henry Wallace with F.D.R. (Franklin D. Roosevelt). He saw Lyndon Johnson before he was President.
84. Glenn let some of the older boys talk him into swallowing a chew of tobacco. Boy, did it make him sick. That was the end of chewing for him.
85. Glenn was working at First National Bank in Belton, Texas when he heard about the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in Dallas.
86. Glenn had a stamp collection for a while. He remembers going through “Aunt Boo Gray’s” old cards and letters and getting lots of 2 & 3 cent stamps. In later life, he had a silver dollar collection that he sold for several thousand dollars.
87. Glenn’s mother believed that everyone needed a dose of Castor Oil occasionally.
88. Glenn liked the “Gone With The Wind” movie stars. His whole senior class saw this movie at the Arcadia theater in Temple, Texas. He didn’t see many movies before that because of no money and no transportation.
89. Glenn heard about the attack on Pearl Harbor on the radio while he was home for the weekend from college.
90. Glenn’s mother didn’t buy very many things in stores.
91. Glenn remembers shopping for penney candy at uncle Edwin Blair’s service station. There wasn’t much shopping as neither Glenn or Jeannine ever had more than a nickel to spend.
92. Glenn designed and made paper doll clothes for his sister. He made ropes and welded in school classes.
93. The family usually cut a cedar tree down for a Christmas tree about a week or so prior to Christmas. Glenn’s dad wasn’t there much at Christmas time. Glenn didn’t get much in the way of toys.
94. Best Christmas present: Glenn used to buy Jeannine beautiful gifts. The year before they married, he gave her a complete set of Max Factor make up and a bottle of Tabu perfume. His step-sister picked out the make up. Years ago, Jeannine gave Glenn a watch which he still wears.
95. Glenn’s family opened Christmas presents early on Christmas morning.
96. Glenn remembers getting a bike when he was about twelve years old; this was a real surprise to him. He remembers this as his best Christmas.
97. Glenn had a happy childhood. Money was very scarce, but everyone was in the same boat. Sometimes bad things happened, but that’s life. Glenn’s father left home and didn’t support them with very much money, but members of the family helped them survive.
98. Glenn: born May 15, 1923 at Sugarloaf mountain near Killeen, Texas. A Dr. Wood in Killeen came to the house for his delivery.
99. Brothers/ Sisters and their birthdays: Aubrey Lee Blair (8-8-1917); Bertie Pearl Blair (12-22-1925).
100. Parents: Herbert Orlando Blair (born 10-7-1889 north of Rogers, Texas) & Bertie Bell (Swan) Blair (born 11-23-1889 in community called old Volo in Bell county, Texas).
101. Uncle R.G. Sutton called Glenn “Preacher” as a nickname.
102. Glenn called his brother Aubrey “Buck” and his sister Bertie Pearl “Sis”.
103. Herbert Orlando Blair’s occupation: farmed; then was in partnership in a garage with R.G. Sutton. He had a trucking business and ran a motel.
104. Towns Glenn lived in before he was twenty years old: Killeen, Holland, and Austin, Texas.
105. Childhood Addresses: Sugarloaf mountain in Killeen, Tx. Holland, Texas (north side of town).
106. None of Glenn’s relatives lived with his family. R.G. and Ruby Sutton did live in an apartment in their home for a very short time.
107. As an older adult, Glenn loved reading old western novels by Zane Grey or Louis L'amour. He would read them over and over.
107. Billy Blair remembers that you could call out several 4-digit numbers to Glenn and he could add them up in his head.
108. Billy Blair remembers that Glenn always wanted an Airstream trailer to use for family vacations, but he never purchased one. He also always wanted a "black jockey boy" statue to put on his front porch. It was a status symbol to have one at the time, but he never bought one because of its racial connotations.
Sources for Glenn & Jeannine Blair articles:
1. Conversations with Glenn and/or Jeannine Blair: November, 1978. December 26, 1986. March 1, 1992. September 1, 1996. April 27, 1997. September 1, 1997. November 27, 1997. June 12, 1998. July 26, 1998. July 28-29, 1998. September 5-7, 1998. November 22, 1998. November 27, 1998. December 25, 1998. February 6, 1999. March 15, 1999. November 24, 1999. April 29, 2000. July 29, 2000. February 8, 2001. September 9, 2001. November 21, 2001. November 23, 2001. December 29, 2001. February 24, 2002. November 28, 2002. December 26-27, 2002. April 18, 2003. April 27-28, 2003. May 15, 2003. June 9, 2003. July 30, 2003. August 29-30, 2003. September 18, 2003. November 26, 2003. February 16, 2004. May 1-2, 2004. June 1, 2004. July 25-27, 2004. November 24-26, 2004. December 18, 2004. December 26-28, 2004. December 31, 2004. January 2, 2005. February 11, 2005. February 23-25, 2005. February 27, 2005. March 14-20, 2005. April 1, 2005. May 7-8, 2005. May 28, 2005. June 3, 2005. June 25, 2005. July 19-21, 2005. July 30, 2005. September 22-25, 2005. October 2-4, 2005. October 7, 2005. October 11, 2005. October 14-16, 2005. October 22-23, 2005. October 29-30, 2005. November 4-6, 2005. November 11-13, 2005. November 25, 2005. December 30, 2005 - January 1, 2006. January 14-15, 2006. February 11, 2006. March 3-4, 2006. March 14, 2006. April 30, 2006. May 30-31, 2006. June, 2006. July 15-16, 2006. July 26, 2006. September, 2006. February 10-11, 2007. March 13, 2007. June 4-6, 2007. July 20, 2007. August 26, 2007. November 21, 2007. December 21, 2007. March 20-21, 2008. May, 2008 July 27, 2008. March 17, 2009. June 13, 2009. August 24, 2009. September 5, 2009. January 1, 2010. September 29, 2010. December 27, 2010 (Note: There were several other conversation dates that I neglected to document, especially in the late 1970's and early 1980's with Glenn).
2. Louise Joann (Lyne) Waller Blair conversation in 1987and on November 28, 1999.
3. Trisha Ellis (Cosgrove) Fabacher Blair conversation in 1978.
4. Billy Blair, January 27, 1979; August, 2006. December 21, 2007. June 17, 2012.
5. Lee Pittman resume.
6. Jeannie (Blair) Pittman conversations. 1980's. June 13, 1009.
7. Baby books of Glenn and Jeannine Blair children.
8. Photo album with notes on family compiled by Billy Blair (with Jeannine Blair’s help) in 1963.
9. Recording information off the backs of old photographs.
10. Glenn Blair birth certificate: Volume 20, page 313 in Bell County, Texas courthouse in Belton, Texas.
11. Wedding License of Robert Glenn Blair and Wanda Jeannine Digby: (No. 2245. Book 34, page 409). Navarro county, Texas.
12. Jeannine Blair diary: note written on December 31, 1946 (in Billy Blair’s possession). Jeannine threw this diary away except for this one cover page, which had fallen out.
13. Glenn Blair deacon ordination service, First Baptist Church in Belton, Texas.
14. A Brief History of the First Christian Church in Belton, Texas by Mrs. Elsie Means.
15. Debra Blair statement, February 24, 2005.
16. Misc. graduation/ wedding invitations of Pearl Digby.
17. Notes taken by Billy Blair during Bobby Blair’s tumor operation.
18. Joanne Louise (Blair) Crouch high school graduation invitation.
19. Wedding invitation of Jud and Mandy (Blair) Barbour.
20. Wedding invitation of Darren and Joanne (Blair) Crouch.
21. Billy Blair’s examination of Glenn and Jeannine Blair’s home movies.
22. Jeannine Digby’s baby book.
23. Conversation with Jeannine (Digby) Blair and Gale (Digby) Cosper on June 3, 2005.
24. Rainbow Courts (Motel, Apartments, Bed & Breakfast). 915 East Cameron. Rockdale, Texas 76567. www.rainbowcourts.com Owners: Dan & Joan Ratliff. (512) 446-2361. Fax: 512-446-2733. This is the address as of June 3, 2005. The same family has owned these courts since 1918. These courts are where Glenn and Jeannine had their honeymoon on February 11, 1947. (diagram and June, 2005 photos). Copies of photos of the courts in 1920's and 1940's were taken by Billy Blair on September 15, 2005 with permission on Dan Ratliff. Jeannine Blair said the cabin they stayed in was on the north side of the courts. Mr. Ratliff said the original court office burned down and only one ledger survived which went from 1930's to 1943. He also said that his wife’s grandmother burned all of the original furniture except for one room because she didn’t want anything which reminded her of the Depression. The only room currently containing original furniture is the cottage which Tennessee Williams stayed in.
25. Billy and Susan Blair’s examination in June, 2005 of the area where Ma Thigpen’s Boarding House used to be located close to the U.T. campus in Austin. This was the boarding house where Glenn Blair stayed while attending the University of Texas. (Diagram and photos).
26. Conversation with Jeannie (Blair) Pittman on June 7, 2005.
27. Birth certificate of Jeannine Digby (Vol. 6, page 428. Bell County, Texas). (Note: name on birth certificate is “Wanda Jeanene Digby”).
28. Conversation with Jeannie (Blair) Pittman on November 23, 2001.
29. JoAnn Blair conversation on November 27, 1998.
30. Various newspaper articles.
31. Conversation with Jeannine, Bob, and Robbie Blair on November 27, 1998.
32. Memory book written by Glenn and Jeannine Blair for Lauren and Will Blair (I believe in 1998).
33. Conversations with Gale Cosper, Glenn & Jeannine Blair, Jeannie Pittman, and Bob Blair on November 23, 2001.
34. Conversations with Pearl (Griffin) Digby.
35. First Christian Church, Belton, Texas Membership Cards for Glenn, Jeannine, Jeannie, Bobby, and Billy Blair (in Billy Blair’s possession).
36. Drawing of the inside of Hill Top Café by Glenn Blair on April 26, 1998.
37. Photos of the antique “Blair Glassware” taken by Billy Blair on September 7, 1998 at the Glenn Blair home.
38. Cemetery plots of H.O. & Loraine Blair and Bertie Bell (Swan) Blair at North Belton Cemetery - 1999.
39. Arthur Wallace conversation on March 16, 2005.
40. Glenn Blair Memorial Service at First Baptist Church in Belton, Texas on March 19, 1953.
41. Conversations with Jeannie and Bob Blair: March 10-14, 2005.
42. Conversation with Brian and Debra (Gower) Blair: 2005.
43. Conversation in November, 2003 with Mandy (Blair) Barbour.
44. Pearl Digby conversation on November 28, 2002.
45. Billy Blair travel diaries.
46. Letters exchanged between Billy Blair and his brother Brian in 1995 -96.
47. Michael Bluejay’s Information and Resources about Housing Co-ops at U.T. on the Internet.
48. Rita (Digby) Locklin conversation on September 25, 2005.
49. Jeannie (Blair) Pittman conversation on October 3, 2005.
50. Glenn and Jeannine Blair golf trophies.
51. Billy Blair: November 4, 2005.
52. Mary (Blair) Farris: November 12, 2005. November 20, 2005.
53. Lee Pittman: November 20, 2005.
54. Glenn Blair records regarding the administration of the Wayne Skinner estate: 1991-1992.
55. Rita (Digby) Locklin conversation on November 28, 2005.
56. Gale Cosper and Jeannine Blair conversation on November 28, 2005.
57. Susan Blair conversation on November 28, 2005.
58. Dwayne Digby conversation on January 14, 2006.
59. Book: Ft. Worth, Then and Now.
60. Conversation with Gale (Digby) Cosper on March 4, 2006.
61. Jeannine (Digby) Blair date book, which lists family birthdates, marriages....
62. Emily Farris, July 15-16, 2006.
63. U.S. Centennial of Flight Commission article on Consolidated Vultee Aircraft Corporation.
64. Aviation in Texas by Roger Bilstein and Jay Miller. Texas Monthly Press. Copyright: 1985. (Pages 194, 195, 197-199, 253).
65. Reuben Fleet and The Story of Consolidated Aircraft by William Wagner. Aero Publishers Inc. 329 West Aviation Road. Fallbrook, California. 92028. Copyright: 1976. (Pages 240, 258-259).
66. Air Force: A Pictorial History of American Airpower by Martin Caidin (In cooperation with the United States Air Force). Bramhall House, New York. Copyright: 1957. (Pages 222-223).
67 .The Aviation Art of Bob Cunningham. Copyright: 1991 by General Dynamics Corporation. (Pages 4-5). Aviation Quarterly. 4th Quarter 1978. Vol. 4, No. 4. Publisher: Richard Bradley Bierman.
68. Website regarding the instrument inventory of the B-36 Bomber. B & J Aircraft. P.O. Box 3147. Dunnellon, Florida 34430. (352) 489-4094. BJAircraft@bellsouth.net
69. Phone conversation with Mattie (Digby) Wesson on June 4, 2007.
70. Conversation with Gale (Digby) Cosper on June 4, 2007 and July 20, 2007.
71. Conversation with Mattie (Digby) Wesson on February 11, 2007.
72. Glenn Blair’s Electrical Engineering Lab book from U.T., Austin, 1943 (in possession of Jeannine Blair).
73. Correspondence from Ricardo L. Cruz to Glenn and Jeannine Blair, 1969 - 1972. He was the foster child in the Philippines they sponsored during that time.
74. Names of Lions Club Minstrel Show leaders (the men with blackened faces who did the skits). These names are written on a series of bricks on the sidewalk on the north side of the Belton courthouse. The bricks were identified and purchased by fellow Minstrel Show star, Dr. Will Long. Billy Blair took pictures of the bricks on July 20, 2007 before they became illegible.
75. Program for the 1966 Lions Club “Dixie Showboat” (Lions Club Minstrel) on April 14-15 at the Tiger Gym in Belton, Texas.
76. Conversation with Jeri (Matthews) Thompson on July 5, 2008 at Susan Blair’s 36th high school reunion.
77. November 27, 2008 conversation between Lauren Hickman and Jeannine Blair about recipes.
78. Conversation with Bob Blair on Oct. 22, 2008 about Glenn Blair memories.
79. Rubbing of concrete impression of Blair children feet at their home at Hill Top Courts in Belton by Billy Blair a couple of days before the concrete slab was destroyed when house was moved/ demolished (portions of the home were moved and pieces were destroyed).
80. Notation regarding the Delco Light Plants came from an internet article regarding Farm Life from the Wessels Living History Farm in York, Nebraska.
81. Mattie Wesson telling story to other Digby family members at Christmas party on December 20, 2009.
82. Jeannie (Blair) Pittman conversation on May 1, 2010.
83. Conversation with Susan Blair on Oct. 1, 2010.
84. E-mail from Megan Blair, Glenn's granddaughter, to Billy Blair on February 28, 2013 regarding Glenn Blair's advice to the younger generation.
85. Text message from Jeannie (Blair) Pittman to Billy Blair on 3-6-13 regarding Glenn Blair's insurance agency while at Hill Top Courts and the Belton Lion's Club Minstrel Shows.
86. Rob Blair, grandson of Glenn Blair, e-mail on March, 2013 regarding Glenn Blair's love of "Little Debbies" snack food.
87. Phone call from Lisa Locklin on March 25, 2013 to clarify facts in article on Glenn & Jeannine Blair.
88. Susan Blair conversation on January 5, 2013.
89. Bob Blair conversation on January 5, 2013.
90. Billy Blair, October 2, 2012.
91. "Find A Grave" website. The memorial number for Robert Glenn Blair is # 101381918.
92. Conversation with Bob Blair (Robert Glenn Blair Jr.) on August 10, 2013.
93. Conversation with Dwayne Digby on April 15, 2007.
94. Billy Blair, January 5, 2008.
95. The Belton Journal newspaper "Journal Files" section. February 8, 2007 (regarding 1967 being the date that Spike Dykes resigned as Belton High School football coach).
96. Conversation with Will Blair, Erica Janes, Debbie & Roger Janes, and John________ on January 5, 2014.
97. Photographs taken of the "crawdad hole" area near Hill Top Courts in Belton, Texas by Billy Blair on Saturday, March 11, 2006.
98. Rita (Digby) Locklin note on Facebook, November 13, 2015 regarding the First National Bank, Belton move to new location.
99. Jerri (Matthews) Thompson, November 23, 2013 (Note about there being a phone in the main bathroom at the Glenn Blair home at Hill Top Courts).
100. Cindy (Digby) Smith, June 19, 2016.
101. Susan Blair, 2017.
102. Will Blair, September 15, 2017 (Memory of Glenn Blair stocking the pantry at his home with "Little Debbie" snacks).
103. Billy Blair, July 17, 2017.
104. Rita (Digby) Locklin stories about First National Bank (Facebook post, March, 2018).
105. JoAnn Spence Berna stories about First National Bank (Facebook post, March 2018).
1. Glenn Blair's .22 automatic rifle was passed down to his son, James Brian Blair.
2. Glenn Blair's large, fireproof filing cabinet was donated to the First Baptist Church, Belton, Texas business office.