CARL PHELAN STORIES


FARM
ANIMALS IN LEVELLAND

Local Levelland residents probably started using farm animals in the middle 1920's.  They used work horses to plow the land and pull wagons to haul various things they needed.  Later on they had more than milk cows sheep, goats and pigs for their sustenance.  I am sure other animals, like egg-laying chickens, were added  in the 1930's.

As the city began to grow in the 1940's, the local residents used  horses to plow and cultivate the farmland around the city and in their garden plots.  They perhaps used some of the smaller horses like Shetland Ponies for recreational purposes.  Pigs and hogs became a more popular staple for food.  The milk cows provided milk for the family and for making butter.

Sometime in the early 1950's, The City of Levelland passed an ordinance that put a stop to owning and maintaining animals in the city limits.  All those farm animals would have to be removed from the city.

I had a friend in the 1940's, that lived on West 8th street. His family had a milk cow some pigs and a few chickens.  When my friend and I were about to travel to see some of the sports events, we would have to go to his house and do the chores before we could travel.  Those were the days back then.

 

THE OUTHOUSE INCIDENT

In the 1940's, there were quite a few residents that did not have indoor toilets.  Most of these people had what was called an Outhouse, a Thunder Jug, a Chamber Pot, The Little Shack Outback or The Earth Closet.

These "so-called," Outhouses were a common sight in the 1940's and early 1950's.  They gradually faded out of existence.  There was also a parody song by a man named Billy Edd Wheeler, called "That Little Brown Shack Outback." That song was so popular that it landed on the "Hit Parade"

I recall that in 1945, it was a popular tradition, on Halloween, for us to celebrate that holiday by turning over these shacks out back. On one Halloween night, a bunch of us guys were out doing our thing by pushing over outhouses. I remember that we were out on West Cactus Drive, and we came upon a particular outhouse; when we turned that one over, we heard a man yell. There had been a man in the outhouse; he managed to get out and yelled, I am going to get my shotgun.  We all ran away as fast as we could; that was the end of our Halloween celebration.  After we got safely home we breathed a sigh of relief.


History & Legacy of Events and Personalities
THAT Transpired In Levelland, Texas

The land plot for The City of Levelland was bought by C.W. Post, the founder of Post Cereals in 1912, but did not become a city until 1921. The towns name was first Hockely City and about a year later was changed to Levelland. G.H. Tubb, the father of coach Gano Tubb built the first two houses in Levelland..

The town grew a little during the Great Depression; from 1929 to 1940.The residents had really hard times during this time period. On April 14th 1935, they had what was called 'Black Sunday', a day that a huge sandstorm hit in the middle of the day and it was so dark that they had to turn on the lights to see.

During World War II, a lot of people in Levelland were drafted and some joined to fight in the War. During the early 1940's, there was a young man named Bill Henderson who was a Featherweight Boxer; in 1948, he won the State Featherweight Title. Bill lost only one fight during his entire career. There was another Levelland resident named Curtis Garrett, who in the late 1940's and 1950's, was a Light Heavyweight boxer; he won several fights in The Golden Gloves State Boxing Matches.

In the early 1950's, there were several businesses that were prominent, Kirk's Drive In,  owned my Walter & Estell Kirk, Woody Weaver's Roller Skating Rink, The Polka Dot Drive In, The Chat & Chew Cafe and The Spot Cafe.

On November 2nd, 1957 one of the best documented cases of UFO landing took place in and around Levelland, Texas. The UFO landings began near Reese Air Force Base and was experienced by Sheriff Weir Clem and Chief of Police A.J. Fowler. The oval shaped object landed beside Highway 114, and the engine in their car died. The same thing happened to a farm worker near Levelland (the engine in his pickup died). There were a series of phone calls which the Police received that night with the same story. No one knows what those UFO's were, but there have been several theories expressed by scientists and so called UFO experts. That event was an important part of Levelland History & Legacy.

One very important event was when Wallace & Rose Blankenship built The Wallace, The New Rose and The Old Rose Movie Theaters in downtown Levelland.  Another great event was the opening of South Plains College in the 1950's.

Another outstanding event happened in 1969, when four men, Harold Phelan, Frank Burnett, Judge Hulon Moreland and Chester Bridges began 'The Little Dribblers Youth Basketball Program.'

To Be Continued, Thanks, Carl Phelan


Written by Carl Phelan - LHS, 1948

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