Municipality government

                     Parish, state and federal


 Funeral arrangements have been announced for Mayor Bill Robertson. Visitation will take place from 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday at Eastside Baptist Church in Minden. The funeral will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday at First Baptist Church. Burial will follow at Gardens of Memory. Services are entrusted to Hill Crest Memorial.  

 
Minden Mayor Bill Robertson has died at age 75.


He had major back surgery in April and had been in recovery. Funeral services for Robertson have not been announced.

Robertson assumed the mayoral post Jan. 1, 1991. The Democrat outright was elected to his sixth term from a field of four in October 2010. That term expires Dec. 31, 2014.

Before being elected mayor, Robertson served 11 years on the Webster Police Jury, the last seven as its president. He represented District 6. Robertson also served on the Minden City Council from 1975-78.
The former Airport Authority chairman was honored as Outstanding Young Man of Minden in 1969 and as an Outstanding Jaycee in 1964.

In the business world, Robertson managed Talbot's shoe department from 1959-61 and Talbot's Shoe Center in Minden from 1961-66, according to The Times' archives. He owned Robertson's Shoes from 1966-79, opening a location in Homer in 1973 and one in Shreveport three years later, says a biographical form he completed in September 1979. Robertson also opened The Purple Hippopotamus in 1972 and The Shoe Box in Minden in 1978.



The father of three was a member of First Baptist Church of Minden, was a life member and past president of Minden Jaycees and was active in the Minden/South Webster Chamber of Commerce, among other groups  

Submitted by Linda Holt Moorehead.

 

Family, friends remember Minden mayor

Celebration of Mayor Bill Robertson's life took place Sunday in city he loved and led

Jun. 30, 2013 10:46 PM

 

People leave First Baptist Church in Minden following Mayor Bill Robertson's funeral on Sunday. / Vickie Welborn/The Times
Written by
Vickie Welborn


MINDEN — It was clear Sunday afternoon when the traditional, more-solemn rendition of “Amazing Grace” was substituted with a toe-tapping, clarinet-driven jazzy version that Mayor Bill Robertson’s funeral was going to be more about a celebration of life rather than a valley of tears.
Yes, there were tears. Especially when Robertson’s son-in-law, Mike Waller, passed along memories on the family’s behalf.

But there mostly were smiles, laughter and appreciation for a man who shaped Minden’s history politically for the past 23 years, but personally for a lifetime. Robertson, 75, died Thursday while undergoing rehabilitation at Promise Hospital in Bossier City.

Robertson had back surgery in April but his recovery was complicated by an infection discovered in his hip from a previous surgery. Robertson had progressed in recent weeks and had expected to return to work. His sudden death stunned family members.

“Brother Bill is enjoying everything we just sang,” said the Rev. Richard Methvin following the congregation’s hearty participation in the hymn, “How Great Thou Art.” “How can we not celebrate his life?”

A chorus of “amens” spread across the crowd gathered inside First Baptist Church after the church’s Celebration Choir and live orchestra performed the contemporary song, “I Can Only Imagine,” which explores what it may be like in heaven.

Retired Judge Graydon Kitchens prompted chuckles as he stood to share some of the funnier moments of his 50-year friendship with Robertson. Kitchens said as he got to know Robertson after his move to Minden he quickly took note of his leadership skills. “He seemed to be president or chairman of everything.”

Their lives intertwined through civic organizations, particularly the Minden Jaycees, their personal business endeavors and politics.

Robertson, he said, was not the prototype of a politician, but instead a constant politician who was always aware of the political ramifications of every decision he made. Robertson “didn’t kiss babies,” Kitchens said. “But when he spoke, people listened because he made sense. … He realized he was a servant to the people.”

(Page 2 of 2)
Minden for decades to come will reap the benefits of Robertson’s leadership, friend Richard Campbell said. “I called him honorable and he called me feel good,” Campbell, a dentist, quipped.


He ticked off the city’s sound financial footing and improvements such as roads, parks, low electricity costs, state-of-the-art airport, festivals and recreation center as some of the high points.

“It’s quite a legacy he leaves for his city and family,” Campbell said of Robertson’s ability to reach across political, religious and racial lines to involve all facets in the city’s business.

Minden Councilman Tommy Davis elicited laughter when he told about the bi-weekly Rook games played by a group of friends that included Robertson and his wife. Robertson was competitive even on that level, but more so when he and his wife teamed up on everyone else.

“He was bigger than life,” Davis said. “But he was respected across the state by everybody.”

Minden will have another mayor, he said. However, “Bill Robertson will be ‘the mayor.’ That’s just the way it will be,” he added.

Waller gave the crowd snippets of Robertson’s personal life: childhood pranks carried out on his brother Bob, personal nicknames for family members, watching movies with his son and being a force on the tennis courts.
“As a family, we have a wonderful heritage,” Waller said.

Woven through all of the memories was the constant acknowledgement that Robertson was able to carry out his life of public service through the support of his wife of 55 years, Barbara; his three children; grandchildren; and other extended family members.

Even though Robertson held the city’s top job, he never boasted or bragged and rarely introduced himself as mayor, noted the Rev. Leland Crawford, whose funeral message was a reminder that Robertson, an unashamed Christian and dedicated church member, was experiencing an afterlife unmatched by that on Earth.

“For Bill, this is not a day of defeat. It’s a victory; … the beginning of really living,” Crawford said.

As the guests exited the sanctuary, Minden police officers stood at attention outside near the hearse ready to transport Robertson’s body to the Gardens of Memory cemetery.

And life will move on today. The City Council will hold its regularly scheduled monthly meeting at 7 p.m. Councilman Joe Cornelius Sr., as mayor pro tem, has been handling many day-to-day decisions in Robertson’s absence.

The council has 20 days to appoint someone temporarily to the mayor’s position. A special election is expected to be called in October since there is more than a year left on Robertson’s sixth term.  

Submitted by LeVerne Langheld Kidd, Class of 1957

 

In Memory of

Mayor Billy H. "Bill" Robertson

May 5, 1938 - June 27, 2013 Obituary
Mayor Billy H. "Bill" Robertson Minden, LA Celebration of Life service will be held in honor of Mayor Bill Robertson on Sunday, June 30, 2013 at 2:00 p.m. at First Baptist Church Minden. The celebration will be officiated by Rev. Leland Crawford, Pastor of First Baptist, Minden and Rev. Richard Methvin, Pastor of Eastside Baptist Church. Interment will immediately follow at Gardens of Memory Cemetery in Minden, LA. The family will be receiving friends on Saturday, June 29, 2013 at Eastside Baptist Church, 1201 Park Hwy, Minden LA, from 5:00 – 8:00 p.m. Bill was born on May 5, 1938 to Homer and Marie Robertson in Independence... Mayor Billy H. "Bill" Robertson
Minden, LA

Celebration of Life service will be held in honor of Mayor Bill Robertson on Sunday, June 30, 2013 at 2:00 p.m. at First Baptist Church Minden. The celebration will be officiated by Rev. Leland Crawford, Pastor of First Baptist, Minden and Rev. Richard Methvin, Pastor of Eastside Baptist Church. Interment will immediately follow at Gardens of Memory Cemetery in Minden, LA. The family will be receiving friends on Saturday, June 29, 2013 at Eastside Baptist Church, 1201 Park Hwy, Minden LA, from 5:00 – 8:00 p.m.

Bill was born on May 5, 1938 to Homer and Marie Robertson in Independence County, Arkansas and went home to be with the Lord on June 27, 2013 in Bossier City, Louisiana.

Bill is survived by his wife, Barbara; daughters, Beverly Robertson Waller and husband Mike, and Brenda Robertson Weeks and husband Billy and son, Kyle Robertson; grandchildren, Jenna Bone, Whitney Weeks Grisham and husband Cody, Chelsi Weeks, and Jamison Bone and great grandson, Trent Harber; brothers, Bob Robertson and wife Lana, and Eddie Robertson; six nephews, Bobby and wife Kim, Ty, Mikey and wife Lisa, Christopher, Michael and Jeffrey Robertson.

He is also survived by his extended family, Angela Frye and husband Shane, Peyton Weeks and his wife Lindsay, Jodie Martin and husband Devin, Amy Waller, Rachel Waller, Jesse Waller and wife Paige and numerous other family and friends.

Mayor Bill Robertson was elected as Mayor of Minden in 1990 and was serving his 6th term. Bill has had many accomplishments in his lifetime: Member of Chamber of Commerce of Minden, Downtown Lion's Club of Minden, lifetime member of Minden Jaycees, member of Jaycees Senate, Outstanding Jaycee in 1964, Outstanding Young Man of Minden in 1969, Outstanding Young Men of America in 1965 and 1972, Past President of the Minden Jaycees, Past Member of Minden City Council, Past Master and Member of Minden Chapter #51; 32nd Degree Mason, El Karubah Shrine, Past President of the Webster Parish Police Jury and was a member and Past President of Louisiana Municipal Association.

He was also a member of First Baptist Church, Minden, LA where he was a past Sunday School teacher of the Young Men Class.

Honoring Mayor Robertson as pallbearers will be: Winky Newer, Brent Cooley, Ty Pendergrass, Morris Guin, George Rolfe, Tracy Campbell, Chief Kip Mourad and Chief Steve Cropper. Honorary pallbearers will be all Minden City Council Members (past and present).

Upon request of the family, memorials may be made to St. Jude's Children Hospital and the First Baptist Church of Minden.

The family would like to extend a special thanks to the Minden Medical Rehab Center, the staff of Promise Hospital in Bossier City, and to all family and friends for their prayers, love and compassion shown to them during this difficult time.

You may share your condolences with the family by visiting www.hillcrestmemorialfh.com.

Submitted by Linda Holt Moorehead

 

 

All I know about this is that my great grandpaw is riding... I think the far passage.. (John Thomas David Sr.)

Submitted by Lizzie David Williams

 

 ANNOUNCEMENT      November 2008

I just finished talking to Chief Bloxom.  He is no longer the Fire Chief, but still has a couple of years to serve as Minden's Police Chief.  The new Fire Chief is George Mourad's (Class of 1947) son.  I do not know him, but knew George well as we "kicked around" some during our high school days.  Bloxom has been the fire Chief since December 1, 1971.  He and I both joined the department as volunteers in 1945, the year my Dad died. Actually, I was only 15 years old and had to lie about my age to  join the department a day before T. C.  I never let him forget that I had seniority over him. HA!  I made the train wreck/fire in Duberly that day, but T. C. missed that event as it occurred before he got on the department.  I also remember the time he and I took the Webster Parish Rescue Squad truck to Cotton Valley after the tornado.  We made many fire and rescue calls and often left school running because we were too young to drive.  We also left baseball practice to attend a fire, but Coach Oliphant put a stop to that.  T. C. was a paid fire fighter on the Ruston Fire Department for a time while I attended La Tech and lived in  the fire station.  He was a good, talented fire fighter and apparently made a good Chief.  He gave and still provides the citizens of Minden a valuable service.  It was sad to hear the news about T. C. retiring from the fire department, but gave me an opportunity to recall some very pleasant memories.  I wish him well and hope he continues to full recovery  from his health issues.  Please keep him in your prayers.

Maurice Whitlow, Class of 1948

Wave...57

This policeman was identified, by Ira Irby, as "Red" Hammontree, he had a son named, Dick.                     submitted by Gary Daniel, M.D., Class of 1952

 Photo by Bob Grambling, submitted by Greg Grambling of a policeman at a

baseball game probably around 1957. If you know who he is e-mail mindenmemories@aol.com

and tell us who he is.

..................................................................................................

 Wanted Photo of the Building - Webster Parish School Board Office

Earlene Lyle, Supt. of Schools, W. W. "Butch" Williams, Jr., & Sherry Gritzbaugh

Marsha Boyd Salmon and Earlene Mendenhall Lyle

Sherry Gresham Gritzbaugh, Police Chief, T.C. Bloxom, & Earlene Mendenhall Lyle

Earlene Mendenhall Lyle, Mayor Bill Robertson, and Sherry Gresham Gritzbaugh

Earlene Mendenhall Lyle, Pat Brown Hilburn and Sherry Gresham Gritzbaugh

                                     

  The Old Minden Court House

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chief of Police - T. C. Bloxom

The Old City Jail

        

Minden Fire Department

Archives &Special Collections La. Special Collections.

Louisiana State University

One University Place

Shreveport, La. 71115-2399

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                                   

                                                                                                                                                                

 

 

 

 

 

 

    Fire Station                                                                             

    Water Tower,          Compliments of Ann Mays Harlan

                           

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   PA 2682First Fire Model T Fire Truck, Minden Fire Department 1926

   PA 2682First Fire Model T Fire Truck, Minden Fire Department 1926

Among the volunteers on Minden'e early fire department were Jeff Davis, Malone, Douglas,

Lonnie Baugh, Ratliff, Dawson Lary, Casey Jones, Jamie White, Bill Webster, John Garrett,

 Burt David, Ben Turner, Johnny David and Lawson Davis.  Friday June 27, 1986 Minden

Press-Herald Courtesy of Quade's
Compliments of Archives & Special Collections, La. State University, One University Place,

 Shreveport, La. 71115-2399

Also listed as PA2692

Photographer: Grabill  - Quade Photographer 513 Main St., Minden, La.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Minden Fire Apparatus 1945

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shell Plant Fire Department - Can you identify these 4 men?

If so E-mail Minden Memories@AOL.COM

Compliments of Nola Ellington

Shell plant fire department - Nola Ellington,

Minden Fire Department

Compliments of

MAURICE WHITLOW

 

 

 

 

                              

 Webster Parish Rescue Squad -  1946/7  Compliments of Maurice Whitlow

     I don't remember all of the members names, but Cameron Bloxom, Jr. (present Fire & Police Chief) is in the uniform hat, 3rd from the left.  Mr. Morrison, Mr. Bishop (Anita Sue's father), and Maurice Whitow (on the end in the uniform hat).  This photo was taken before the rescue squad acquired a truck. I was probably 16 in the photo.

          Maurice Whitlow                                   (If a reader is able to identify the men in the picture, please e-mail MindenMemories@AOL.com)

          The shortest guy on the back row, third from the RIGHT is my dad, John L. (Johnny) Mays.

          Ann Mays Harlan That good looking  man on the back row on the extreme left side is my Dad, Alwyn Doyle Hurley.  I will send this picture to Gary and see if he knows any of the other men   Waurynne Hurley Neeley

 I  found out that this squad was one of three at that time.  The one you have is the L&A Shops team.  Will get more info when I get a chance to see T. C. again.   Billy  Baldwin

 

It is interesting that this was also the scene on a postcard

Compliments of Archives & Special Collections, La. State University, One University Place, Shreveport, La. 71115-2399

Winch Lift-

Submitted by Nola Stonecipher Ellington

I I know the Luck family will know about this picture because Mr. Luck was dad's boss there.  My father is the 4th from the left standing up

The City of Minden Light & Water Plant is still in operation today

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Submitted by Ann Mays Harlan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

City of Minden Water Plant

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mayor Bill Robertson

The entrance to the civic center

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 The Parking Lot for the Civic Center and City Office Building decorated for Christma

Minden Medical C Minden Sanitarium during the fifties

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Minden Civic Center and Office Buildings

The Federal Building replaced the post office in 1959

The United State Post Office

From the MHS Grig

1916-1959

PD 198 - Chamber of Commerce - Minden, Circa  1920 Scroll back and forth 

          Minden Chamber of Commerce seated below the downtown water tower which was torn down in the sixties. They are standing in front of Fuller's Garage, Minden's first auto repair shop.

 

  In 1953 this picture of the Webster Parish Court House could be mailed for one penny.

 

PICTURES OF OLD MINDEN FIRE STATION

I just wanted to share with you some pictures of Minden. Not sure of the origin of the older Firehouse photo. The Firehouse was the Old central Fire Station that was located across from the Post Office on Pearl Street. My Dad (Garvin P. Gray) was a Fireman for 25 years up until the time of his death in 1989. One of the pictures was taken in Germany. I was fortunate to make the trip in 1993.

I enjoy the emails.....

Thanks

Michael D. Gray, Class of 1976



Minden Fire Station Group




Minden, Germany
Where I was fortunate to visit in 1993



Old Central Fire Station in Minden




I just wanted to share with you some pictures of Minden. Not sure of the origin of the older Firehouse photo. The Firehouse was the Old central Fire Station that was located across from the Post Office on Pearl Street. My Dad (Garvin P. Gray) was a Fireman for 25 years up until the time of his death in 1989. One of the pictures was taken in Minden Germany. I was fortunate to make the trip in 1993.

I enjoy the emails.....

Thanks

Michael D. Gray

 


  Sheriff's Race 1933

 

Echo's of the Past

By: John Aagan,

Webster Parish Historian

 

In an earlier Echo of Our Past, I discussed the traumatic year 1933 in Minden. Today's column will focus on a brief aspect of that year, the intense race for the office of Sheriff that took place in May and June of that year.  From beginning to end, the race lasted approximately 4 weeks. Today, that is not enough time for the campaign literature to be printed. Yet the credentials of the candidates and even the statewide implications of that race have probably never been exceeded in a race for the top law enforcement officer in Minden.

 

Sheriff A. M. Hough had been elected to office in 1928. After finishing a successful first term, he was reelected in 1932. Unfortunately, a few weeks after taking office he came down with a case of influenza that led to further complications and produced a life threatening illness. Hough's

illness extended to several months in length, and in his absence leadership at the Webster Parish Sheriff's Office was shared between Chief Criminal Deputy O. H. Haynes, Sr.; Civil Deputy Jimmy Davis, who filled in as chief administrator; and the Sheriff's son, Deputy P. M. Hough, who supervised the parish prisoners.  When the devastating tornado struck Minden on Monday, May 1, 1933, Sheriff A. M. Hough's condition had deteriorated to such a degree that his doctors gave him few days to live. True to their diagnosis, A. M. Hough died on Sunday, May 7, 1933 at the age of 59.  Under state law, parish Coroner Dr. S. M. Richardson assumed the office of Sheriff, but the day-to-day operation of the office remained under control of the unofficial arrangement used over the months of Hough's illness.  The governor had up to 60 days to call a special election and then the date for the Democratic primary, to precede the general election, would be set by the Democratic Executive Committee of the Parish. (The Republican Parish Committee would have also set a date for a Republican Primary if a Republican Party had existed in Webster Parish in 1933.)

 

By Friday, May 12, Governor O. K. Allen had issued the call for the special election to be held on Tuesday, June 20, 1933. The speed with which the governor issued the call raised eyebrows locally as it normally took several weeks to get a proclamation from Baton Rouge. Speculation began that perhaps the state administration, part of the Long political organization, had a special interest in the local race. Once the date for the general election was set, the Parish Democratic Executive Committee scheduled the Democratic Primary election for Tuesday, June 6, 1933. With the election dates so near, filing for the office of Sheriff would open on Monday, May 15 and close on May 19, 1933. Several candidates were expected to enter the contest.

 

Speculation about the Long machine's interest in the local Sheriff's race was heightened when the first candidate filed for the office of Sheriff. He was Louie A. Jones, a Minden native, who was at that time serving as Assistant Superintendent of the State Highway Patrol.  Jones, had been with

the Highway Patrol for 5 years, but had spent most of that time attached as the top personal bodyguard for Governor Huey P. Long. Local tradition is that Jones had earned his place with Long in 1928, when as a new member of the Highway Patrol, he had removed a heckler from a speech Long was delivering here in Minden during his campaign for Governor.  Impressed by the young lawman's actions, Long had Jones assigned to his personal staff soon after winning the office of governor. Jones rose to become one of Long's closest aides.

 

When Long moved on to the Senate in late 1932, Jones was promoted to Assistant Superintendent of the Highway Patrol, but maintained his offices here in Minden in the People's Bank building. The rapid entry of Jones into the race sparked speculation that the Long team hoped a Jones victory might finally deliver Webster Parish into the Long camp. In those years, the Sheriff was the undisputed political leader of the Parish, and Webster Parish, while having strong Long supporters in the rural areas had remained, particularly in Minden, anti-Long territory.  In his announcement, Jones hoped to squelch those rumors with the following comments: "The decision to enter the campaign is at the solicitation of hundreds of friends and supporters in Webster Parish where he was born and reared. Mr. Jones states that no political alliance with anyone has been made nor will any be entered into and that if elected he will be free to employ the most efficient help that can be had, without the influence of political pressure." Jones, who made the most use of paid newspaper advertising in the campaign used as his slogan: "Efficiency and Economy." He promised to operate the Sheriff's office with as few assistants as possible and with "consideration to the taxpayers at the forefront at all times."

 

The second candidate to file for the Democratic Primary was somewhat of a surprise entry. J. D. Huckaby, President of the Webster Parish Police Jury announced he was running to fill the unexpired term of Sheriff Hough. Huckaby said he too had been urged by many friends to enter the race, based upon his knowledge of the needs of the parish from his time serving on the

Police Jury. Elected to the Jury from Ward 4 in a special election in January 1929. Huckaby had filled the seat of Jury President J. H. Nelson who had resigned because of business commitments.  Huckaby had then been chosen Jury President himself in March 1931. In his announcement Huckaby stressed his intimate knowledge of the financial straits of the parish, and his

ability to deal with these problems while still providing the protection of the Sheriff's office.  Avoiding any mention of his lack of experience in law enforcement, the candidate also emphasized that he was an independent candidate with no ties to any faction. He promised to "treat everyone fairly and courteously in the enforcement of my official duties. I intend to show

favoritism to none and to enforce all the laws on the statute books of Louisiana to the best of my ability and understanding, without fear, or hope of reward from any person or faction."

 

The third candidate to enter the race had been expected to be the leading candidate to replace Sheriff Hough. O. H. Haynes, Sr., had been a deputy in the Webster Parish Sheriff's Office for several years and had served the role of Chief Criminal Deputy since June 1932.  Haynes promised continuity in the service that had been provided by the Hough administration. He planned to retain Deputy Prentiss M. Hough, and promote the son of the late Sheriff to Chief Criminal Deputy. In addition, Deputy James N. Davis would retain his post as Chief Office Deputy.  In his announcement, Haynes stressed the need for efficient, economical administration of the Sheriff's office and emphasized that he would enforce the laws and the economy would be practiced not only preached. Haynes pledged to continue the type of service provided by the late Sheriff Hough.

 

The final entrant into the race for Sheriff filed on Friday, May 19. J. Bryan Batton touted his years of experience in law enforcement and also provided a more detailed plan of action than the other candidates for the position. Batton had served as Chief Deputy for 8 years under former Sheriff "Hutch" Phillips and had also served two terms as Chief of Police for the City of Minden.  Beginning his announcement, Batton made the seemingly obligatory disclaimer of any alliance with an outside faction and proclaimed his independence as a candidate.  He, like Haynes, promised to use only one field deputy and one office deputy. Batton's other enumerated promises included charging only for the actual cost of conveying prisoners to the state penitentiary. He promised that an itemized bill would be given to the Police Jury and this process would save the taxpayers of the parish several thousand dollars each year.  In this short campaign this would be the nearest thing to a political attack in print issued by any candidate. Although he didn't directly levy the charge, the implication was that the current administration was costing the taxpayers those thousands of dollars Batton would save. Since Haynes was running largely on the record of the Hough administration, Batton's statement was an indirect indictment of the Haynes campaign.  Batton ended his announcement by stating that he had

pleased the public in the past and if elected he would serve the people and enforce the law to the best of his ability.

 

By the time the filing ended, a little over two weeks remained before the date of the primary.  After the close of filing, the Parish Democratic Executive Committee met to set the time for the election and choose the election commissioners for each voting site. The polls were to be open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Primary Day, June 6, 1933.

 

After the initial newspaper announcements, few ads appeared in local newspapers, and no public events were planned featuring the candidate. This race was a prime example of "retail politics" where the candidates make personal contact with as many voters as possible, a task made very difficult by the compressed time frame of this race. Newspaper articles did give clues that this was a heated race, even though no stories directly addressed what was taking place in the campaign wars. One banner headline read "Race For Sheriff Grows Tense," but the accompanying article only rehashed the biographies and promises of the four candidates. Another clue that voter interest was high came in the form of a prediction of a voter turnout approaching 2400 of the 3500 registered voters in Webster Parish. In those days, as today, a nearly 70% turnout is a sign of a hotly contested race.

 

On Election Day, Tuesday, June 6, even those expectations were exceeded. In the parish, 2,939 ballots were cast, or more than 80% of those eligible to vote. In a surprising turn of events, one candidate was able to gain a majority of the vote, avoiding the expected runoff election. O. H. Haynes, Sr., won a plurality in 12 of the 16 precincts, and complied a total vote of 1,492 or 50.8% of the vote, avoiding a runoff by 22 votes. The only precincts Haynes failed to carry were Doyline, where he was tied by J. D. Huckaby with 53 votes each; Yellow Pine and Sibley, which both were won by Louie Jones; and Dubberly where Batton won a plurality.  The final totals were:  Haynes, 1492, 50.8%; Jones, 654, 22.2%; Huckaby, 563, 19.1%; and Batton, 230, 7.8%.

 

The general election, scheduled for June 20, 1933, was, as always in those days of one party Louisiana, an anti-climax. Only 491 individuals voted in the General Election and O. H. Haynes, Sr., received 490 of those votes. One write-in ballot was cast for J. B. Batton.  Haynes was sworn in as Sheriff of Webster Parish on June 27, 1933, after his commission was received from Governor O. K. Allen. Haynes' victory began a new era of law enforcement in Webster Parish. He would serve as Webster Parish Sheriff from 1933 until 1952, when he was defeated by J. D. Battton, a son of his 1933 opponent J. Bryan Batton. In 1964, O. H. Haynes, Jr., who had served as a Deputy Sheriff under his father, defeated J. D.  Batton. O. H. Haynes, Jr., would serve four terms as Sheriff before retiring in 1980. Today, several descendants of O. H. Haynes, Sr., are involved in law enforcement in Minden and Northwest Louisiana.

 

Louie A. Jones remained involved in State Government inclulding a stint as Warden of the State Prison at Angola. He was living in Baton Rouge at the time of his death in March 1965. J. D. Huckaby retained his seat on the Police Jury, serving out his term as President of the Jury until 1936. Bryan Batton did not again gain election to office, but two of his sons, Sheriff J. D. Batton and long-time Minden City Councilman and Mayor Jack Batton were active in political circles and a grandson, the late Jimmy Batton, was also involved in local law enforcement.

 

Today's Echo of our Past was a brief exciting Sheriff's race that perhaps attracted the most distinguished field of candidates in our Parish's history and began the long association of the Haynes family with the office of Sheriff in our parish.  To close with a request, I mentioned briefly in this article an occasion when Huey Long appeared in Minden. I am seeking anyone who was present to hear the speech delivered by then Senator Long in Minden on Thursday evening, November 9, 1933. This speech was given particular significance in T. Harry Williams' landmark biography of Long; however, the local viewpoint of the story has never really been shared. If you were present that night, over 70 years ago, I would like to record your memories. Even if you were not in attendance, but have heard stories about that night from family members, I would also be interested in learning about those accounts. Over the years Huey Long spoke more than a dozen times in Minden, but for now I'm am specifically interested on that one occasion. If you have any stories of that night, you can reach me or leave a message for me at 377-2050. I would appreciate your input.

 

Echo's of the Past

By: John Aagan,

Webster Parish Historian

WSPO 46 Clerk of Court Clarence Wiley on the left - O.H. Haynes, Jr., being sworn into his first term as Sheriff.

Staff of the Sheriff's office in 1946

 

Identification of picture of Staff

Far left: Deputy B. W. Matthews (my Uncle Bunt). Theresa Matthews Bunner, Class of 48

Russell Adams was about 21 years old in 1946. He graduated from MHS in 1942.

Ann Mays Harlan, Class of 58

That is Russell Adams, when he returned from the Navy he went to work for the Sheriff's office. Clarence Wiley and Prentice Hough are also in that picture.

John Aagan, Webster Parish Historian

I cam confirm story of S.M. Richardson MD being sheriff for a short time. He tried to remain aloof from politics. He was quite glad when the new sheriff took over. I base that on conversations I overheard as a child as well as words from his wife, my grandmother.

Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T Sam Richardson, Class of 1960