By Jean Hayworth
A.L. Elliott was spearheadline a Boy Scout campaign to establish a viable program in Stephens County. In 1929, the only two Boy Scout Troops active in Breckenridge were affiliated with the First Methodist Church and the First Christian Church and were under the supervision of the Eastland County Boy Scout organization that was affiliated with the Oil Belt Boy Scout Council.
Stephens County was the only county in Texas, at that time, that did not have a Boy Scout Council organized as a central organization for all troops to be under that jurisdiction, in that county.
Elliott called a town meeting and had a Boy Scout spokesman, Joseph Ferraro, from the U.S. Bureau of Mines and a member of the Oil Belt Boy Scout Council. Also on hand was H.B. Johnson from Ranger, who was going to help get the Stephens County Boy Scout Council established. The orchestra at the First Methodist Church provided music as the entertainment at the end of the meeting.
Winklers' Department Store, in Breckenridge, hired a new manager for the Ladies Shoe Department, A. L. Blessingim, who had worked in Dallas and Gainesville. His goal was to improve the Shoe Dept. at Winklers' and get more name brand shoes from Italy and other direct outlets for handmade shoes.
Coach P.E. Shotwell came back into town briefly from working at a Boy's Camp in Kerrville, which he did every summer. Shotwell was due to leave Sunday, Aug. 18, for the two-week Rockne-Warner Coaching School in Dallas. He would return by Sept. 1, just in time to get the Buckaroos turned out for their training program prior to school starting Sept. 9. Assistant coach Raymond Berry also would accompany Shotwell to the two-week coaches school taught by Knute Rockne and Warner.
Coach Shotwell had time to go over the fall schedule with the new Sports Editor at the Breckenridge American, Wilson Ritchie. There would be five home games and five away games, with nine of the games with Class A schools. The opening game was slated for Sept. 21, with Class B, Comanche and all the rest were with the Class A, Oil Belt District teams. Three new teams had been added to the Oil Belt District, which included Sweetwater, Mineral Wells and Big Spring. The Buckaroo schedule for the Fall of 1929 was as follows:
Sept. 21 " Comanche " H Sept. 27 - Big Spring -H
Oct. 4 " Mineral Wells " T Oct. 12 - Eastland - T
Oct. 19 " Brownwood " H Oct. 26 - Cisco - T Nov. 2 - Sweetwater " T Nov. 9 - Abilene - H
Nov. 16 " San Angelo " T Nov. 28 - Ranger - H
On Oct. 5, Simmons University and Texas Christian University game would be held once again at Buckaroo Stadium. The previous year, both schools were impressed by the crowd and the enthusiasm for the game to be held there from the alumni of both universities. An estimated crowd of 6,500 attended, which was a huge economic boost to the community.
The first all-metal dirigible, named the ZMC-2, was built at the Naval Air Station Grosse Ile., located in Detroit, Mich. It was 150 feet long and 52 feet in diameter.
The cigar-like body had eight large fins above and below the main body of the dirigible, with four of them equipped with rudders to steer the ship and inflated with helium.
The dirigible used a crew of four and was capable of carrying a load of 1,000 pounds and could travel more than 1,200 miles, at a cruising speed of 55 mph.
The first test flight of the ZMC-2 was Aug. 19, 1929, piloted by Rud Duggan, at the NAS at Detroit and was later transferred to Lakehurst NAS in N. J., where it was permanently stationed and flew all missions from there.
The dirigible was made of Alclad, which is an aluminum alloy and was built with 3.5 million rivets, for the thin metal skin, almost like a fabric stretched around the frame, at a cost of $4.5 million. It was the only successfully operated metal-skinned airship that was ever built and operated by the U.S. Navy from 1929 until it was scrapped in 1941. The ZMC-2 was flown out of the NAS at Lakehurst and completed 752 flights and logged more than 2,265 hours of flight.
In Texas, there had been a controversy about stopping the pension payments to Civil War veterans and/or their widows. The Texas Legislature announced that there would be no disruption of payment, as was erroneously reported throughout the state. The Texas State Comptroller and Texas State Treasurer confirmed that widows under age 75 would receive $37.50 each quarter and that the 310 men and 35 widows, who were at the Confederate Home in Austin, also would be paid on schedule.
There was a Sun Tan craze at most of the nation's beaches during the summer of 1929 but Clarendon Beach in Chicago had reported a huge problem.
It was reported that the manager of the beach was having trouble keeping both sexes in their swim suits. The regulations had to be enforced for the first time that season, when men appeared to be rolling up their trunks to the upper thighs as soon as they reached the beach.
Women began slipping out of the shoulder straps and exposing their bare shoulders and then rolling up the skirts of the suit to expose more of their legs to the sun. The Beach Manager stated that the regulation said, "bathers must be completely inside their suits at all times, while at the beach." One must visualize the bathing suits of the 1920s and 1930s era to appreciate the humor of that statement.