11-05-99. The following message was recieved from Mr. Paul Jones, elementary school principal at Saltillo.

We are collecting donations for a new modern, safe, and handicap accessible playground. A new playground is well overdue, some of the current equipment is over 40 years old.

Our PTO has already collected nearly $15,000 from this year's fall carnival. However, we are still short of our goal for a $30,000 playground.

I f you could spread the word, we would appreciate it.

In fact all persons who donate over $1,000 will have their names engraved on a permanent plaque at the playground. Donations should be sent to: Saltillo/ISD Playground Fund, 100 School Street, Saltillo, TX  75478

02-23-04. From Joe Ben Combs, son of Ollie and Leona Combs

On May 22, 2004 a dedication ceremony is scheduled regarding Confederate markers for my paternal grandfather, who is buried in the Greenwood cemetery. More information from Gretta (Combs) Reich

02-24-04. E-Mail from Carol Arnold


  Enjoyed going back and seeing your updates, Tom. . . . Our family history work is on hold for a bit, but we are
still interested in the general history of Saltillo, and in Kelly's father's connections to the Rays -- as in Jack
Ray, whose son George Washington Ray married Sophronia Fults, whose daughter Nora Ray Married Walter
W. Arnold, son being Kelly's dad Ray Arnold, who spent many summers visiting family in Saltillo area. In  the
(I'm guessing) 1920s. So -- we'll keep coming back to see if anything shows up . . .

Carol Arnold

02-24-04. E-Mail from Bob Conley

Hi Tom,

    . . . I have really enjoyed everything on the Saltillo Website. I check often to see if you have updated it. I contacted John DeBusk after seeing his contribution. I am reminded of the time as a teenager I was hitchhiking, or John offered me a ride from Mt. Vernon to Saltillo on his motorcycle. If I have it right, as we were going around the last curve out of Mt. Vernon on highway #67 we were doing about eighty. John had his right hand on the handlebar and was getting a pair of goggles from the mirror for me with his left. After he gave me the goggles, he opened it up. That was a long time ago and I don't want to exaggerate, but at 100 mph plus it doesn't take long to get from Mt. Vernon to Saltillo. I think it was the fastest I ever traveled by land. LOL
    I have also been in contact with James Fletcher. When I was about ten, our family moved on the place that joined his Granddad's farm. I have read your story, Summertime, telling about going to the ribbon cane patch two miles east of Saltillo. My experience was quite different. Mr. Walter Burns told my dad to tell my sister and I we could have cane anytime we wanted. As you will remember, every boy carried a pocket knife. It was no trouble to stop by mr. Burn's cane patch every afternoon and cut a couple of stalks. I can't think of anything that ever tasted better than that cane after having walked the two miles after school.
    Keep up the good work on the Website. I will send an update on my e-mail address when I get it.

Best Regards,
Bobby Conley

John DeBusk lives dangerously from driving a car at 70mph when he was 12 years old [The Accident], to steering a speeding motorcycle, to jumping out of airplanes. That's just what I know about. Note: Bob Conley lives in Linden, Texas. TJM

03-22-04. E-Mail from Angela Lowry Whitt

Hi Tom,

    Thanks for the reply. Yes, the website is much improved, and brings me a lot pf pleasure remembering back when. My Dad owned the store in Saltillo from 1938 untill 1953 when he sold it and purchased the locker plant in Pittsburg, which he made into Pittsburg Meat Company. Dad died in December, 1990 at age 86, and Mother in September, 1992 at 86.
    To be honest I can vaguely remember you, and I suppose that is because you left before high school. Who were some of those in your class?
     My albums with pictures of Saltillo are packed away. when I find them I'll scan and send some to you. If I can find the time, I will write a story of rememberances of my days in Saltillo. I left there after graduation from high school in 1950 never to return.
    I met my husband in college, and we have lived in several towns in Texas. We moved to Round Rock in 1983, and plan to live here the remainder of our lives.
    I will be back in contact with you. Thanks for the great job you are doing with the Saltillo website.

Kindest regards,
Angela Lowry Whitt
I hope Angela does send me some pictures, and a story would just be great. Some of the people I remember who were in my class were Howard Osteen and Travis Finch. TJM
05-18-2006. E-Mail from Melissa Collins

Hi There! 
    Your site is such a blessing!  I lived in Saltillo from 1985-2001 (age 3 when we moved there).  I can remember my father, Howard Collins, being very well known and involved in the town.  He contributed greatly to some of its growth.  He served on the school board and donated land for the Masonic lodge building and helped build it. I think back and that was in the late 80s early 90s and it seemed like it made the town huge..from nothing. 
    Now that I look at your site, I see even deeper growth and roots, and I am so interested. I'm not sure if you remember the old tiny post office, but my parents bought it when we lived there too, and it was first my sister-in-laws beauty shop, and then my summer snow cone stand ( Saltillo Sno).  It is so neat as I am 23, and have so many significant memories, and then I look at the old pictures and read the stories of many many years ago....the town just kept evolving.
    We had a dairy right off of interstate 30 (south side of the highway)...my father passed away in 1991 at the age of 61, he is buried in the cemetery across from the Old Saltillo Methodist church.  I have recently decided to get married, and it is my dream to have a small intimate wedding at the old church.  That's how I found your site . . . I was looking up information on the church trying to find pictures. 
    I do photography in my free time and have a great photo that I took of the church a couple of years ago.  It is a 18x20, and if you are interested I'll have an extra one made and send it to you via mail.  I have tons of other pics from the town...building being built, farms, etc. I go back about every six months, and if I could find good work out there I would probably move!  I am going back next weekend for a niece's graduation in Mt. Vernon.  I plan on going to the church to take some pictures of the inside and back area.
    I saw the picture of Dolly Pearl and some others from the newspaper clipping...I can remember when I was little taking Mrs Dolly cookies and going to visit her.  When I was little I always went to see Dolly, RB Bennett, Wayne Wardrup, and a few others.  Such great great people!  If you are in touch with any of their families I would be delighted to email them!
    I wont keep you, but it is great that you are doing this!  Let me know if you want that picture and I can email you any more I take in the future!

Melissa Collins

email me

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(Note: This letter has been transcribed from the original and edited for readability. Letter Courtesy Robert Cowser.)
For more information and pictures of the Caudle family, see pictures.

Aug -20-84

Mr. Robert Cowser

Robert forgive me for not writing sooner. Christine Corn asked me to tell you something about our show as I grew up and would visit her family at Saltillo.

Robert I just wrote a book to be placed in the Library of Arts in Texas State Capitol in Austin. It will stay there, but I keep the privilege of writing a book, a paperback.  I thought about writing a little story for anyone. I was in show business for 30 years.

I was 3 weeks old when my parents left Bowie, Texas.  I wouldn’t know how to start or what to take out
of 30 years. I went on stage at two and a half years. Papa had a one wagon show.  We showed in little country school houses, children arrived to 6 girls and 1 boy. We grew to a 16 wagon circus, a awfully lot happened. I will have to stop for there’s no end. We sold out when I was 19 years old. We went by rail with a company, Lachmont & Lewis Show.  On & on, Saltillo is what you are interested in. Papa was a ventriloquist. Our wooden head [doll] was Tomie. Papa was good. Mary, my sister, and I sang and danced,
played music, and clowned (wrong. ha). Can you make out some of this spelling? I wish you were close enough, we could talk―maybe work up a book. I have my notes, as two interviewers were sent to Raymond villa to record my history. We were 12 days from 9am to 5 each day. I still remembered everything from 2½ years, when I handled snakes and did a little clog dance, and Papa played the fiddle and Mama the banjo.

Gotta Stop

P.S. If you should answer, I may move, but will be here another month. My son has a permanent address.
Address it to Bill & Georgia Christoffel. He will just forward it to me, or this lady will forward it. I would like to hear from you. Thanks for your letter.

(On back of letter)
Here is correct: Hoblitzelle Theatre of Arts, Library of Humanities Research Center, Austin, TX

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