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And Now You Know: Orange News from July 1950, Political Rallies to Motor Scooter Wreck

Mike Louviere
And Now You Know

In July 1950, there were several things going on in and around Orange. In those days there were political rallies held around the county. Some trucking company would donate the use of a flatbed trailer. The trailer would be parked in a prominent place and candidates for local and county candidates for office to use as a stage to make speeches promoting their candidacy.

The first political rally of the year was scheduled to be held in Mauriceville on Wednesday, July 12. The rally would move to Orangefield on Thursday, Friday it would be staged at Tilley Elementary School in Riverside, and the last rally was on Saturday in Bridge City.

This year the incumbent sheriff, Chester Holts, would be opposed by one candidate. County Attorney W.E. (Bill) Lea had one opponent, and County Judge Sid Callivet was opposed by four opponents.

The Orange contingent of Boy Scouts was due to arrive by train from the National Jamboree at Valley Forge on Wednesday night. The train was previously expected to arrive at 5:30 p.m. but was rescheduled to arrive at 10 p.m. behind the Sunset Limited. Most of the local scouts from Orange were expected to meet the train. The group of Orange Scouts consisted of nine Scouts and two adult leaders.

Fifty enlisted men and nine officers of the headquarters and headquarters company of the 49th Armored Division, the local National Guard unit, were scheduled to leave Saturday for two weeks training at Fort Hood.

Major James Mallory, commanding officer of the unit said that all of the officers vacancies of the unit had been filled but there were a few vacancies in the enlisted unit.

Any man interested in attending the camp could contact the administrative personnel at the armory located at Fourteenth and Cypress Streets or could dial 3464 for information.

What amounted to a “photo essay” was a picture and caption on the front page. The photo showed a car about to strike a four inch deep hole in the railroad crossing on Park Avenue. The hole had been there for several weeks. The hole was in the grade and could not be seen until the car was almost upon it.

“The condition shown by this picture is typical of the manner in which Southern Pacific neglects its street crossings in Orange. The fact that they are so often in a dangerous condition and likely to cause serious accidents doesn’t seem to bother the railroad any,” stated the Leader.

Three members of the Orange Fire Department were attending the 21st Annual Firemen’s Training School at College Station.

They were Joe Stewart, M.M. Herrin, and Val Penny. Stewart was an instructor of high pressure and foamite at the school.

About 620 trainees were expected to attend the school which ran from Monday through Friday. The school was sponsored by the State Firemen’s and Fire Marshall’s Association and conducted by the Industrial Extension of Texas A&M College.

Roy Bergeron, 17, sustained minor injuries when the motor scooter he was riding was struck by a car driven by Jimmy Winfree, another Orange youth, at Cypress and Ninth Streets.

According to P. Barras, investigating officer, Winfree, 16, disregarded the stop sign at the intersection and ran into the scooter.

Both boys were given tickets, Winfree for running a stop sign and Bergeron for not having an operator’s license on his person.

Damages were estimated at $55.

“And now you know.”