We have a recommendation for the recipe section of the magazine: Scratch and sniff with each picture. Can’t wait to try the pecan recipes [“2014 Holiday Recipe Contest,” December 2014].
Lynn Morgan | Gainesville
Cooke County ECA
You Better Watch Out
Thanks for the article “Naughty Santa” [December 2014].
In 1927, my grandfather had just finished building a new barn, and he brought the family to the new place the day after the bank robbery. They noticed what appeared to be bloodstains on the new barn door. They soon discovered that the bank robbers had apparently stayed in the barn and had built a “fort” out of fresh hay bales.
Later that day, the Eastland County sheriff told my grandmother to be particularly careful about dealing with strangers. When she told him she kept a loaded, 12-gauge, double-barreled shotgun in the house, he suggested that if she heard any suspicious noise, she should shoot first and ask questions later. The next day she heard a knock on the door and called for the person outside to identify himself or she would shoot.
When she didn’t hear a reply, she took aim at the door and was about to fire both barrels. Then, deciding to double-check, she looked out the window and there stood the sheriff who had warned her the previous day.
He didn’t hear my grandmother call out, and she never heard him announce himself. Fortunately no one was hurt.
John T. Wende | Dale
We’ve Been Flagged
“Salute to Nine Flags” [November 2014] was informative, especially for a history buff. Nine flags have flown over Nacogdoches; that’s a bunch!
My attention was drawn to the flag with the red arm and sword. I had to look it up and read the history, but first I needed to identify that flag so I cross-checked them with the article. I was able to identify eight flags from the article. The “red arm and sword” flag didn’t match.
I believe that the mentioned “Fredonia Rebellion” flag is misrepresented by the Dimmitt’s bloody arm flag of 1835 in the depiction. This flag was flown over Goliad, not Nacogdoches.
Daniel Jacobson | Montgomery
Editor’s note: There is a lot to learn about historic Texas flags. For images of the nine flags that flew over Nacogdoches, visit this site. Find flags of Texas’ independence movements, including Dimmit’s Goliad Flag, here.
I have a huge cottonwood tree that I hope someone would want to salvage for wood. You recently did an article on historic trees [“Tall Tales,” October 2014]. The one I have is wider at the base than a rake is long—so maybe 8 feet—and probably over 60 feet tall. The house was built in 1950. I have owned it since 1970 or so, and it was huge then.
The board feet would be tremendous from this native tree. Would you happen to know anyone interested in its history or its wood?
As the community papers for Buda and Kyle (and family-owned since 1955), the Hays Free Press and sister paper the News-Dispatch understand what it means to serve readers. Your article “Success Stories” [September 2014] resonated with us. Thank you for highlighting small-town newspapers!
Our business is not dying, it’s thriving. Changes in content delivery (Web, mobile Web, social media) mean hometown papers must adapt, but we continue to provide the “hyperlocal” content readers want: high school sports, business, education, government and all the “regular” news happening in our area. We are also able to interact with our audience because many of our employees live and work here, offering more flexibility and better coverage.
The dynamic between a community and its local newspaper is unique and creates a strong bond. Readers count on community newspapers, and we believe that will be the case well into the future.
Kim Hilsenbeck, Editor
Hays Free Press & News-Dispatch
Kyle and Dripping Springs | PEC