Springfield News-Leader

Christian County residents celebrate centennial

- Springfiel­d-Greene County Library District Special to the News-Leader

This group of Christian County residents dresses in period costumes for the Christian County centennial celebratio­n in at a huge three-day-long county-wide celebratio­n held in Ozark in June 1959.

In this shot, Glen Mooney, Orus White, and R.E. Phipps “arrest” Tom Gough and prepare to escort him to the Centennial jail for failure to grow a proper beard that most of the participat­ing men wore for months leading up to the celebratio­n.

Pictured from left to right are Peggy Noe, Betty Stewart, Paula Campbell, Glen Mooney, Orus White, Tom Gough, R.E. Phipps, Mrs. Orville Keysser, Lucile Anderson, Mrs. Leonard Lehman, Mrs. Paul Estes, Eldena Bilyeu, Mrs. Glen Campbell, Mrs. Joe Monger, Stephen Eakins, and Lida Rysted.

Today, Christian County is one of the fastest growing counties in the state, home to the expanding towns of Nixa and Ozark, but the county was originally organized in 1859, separating a portion of its land from Taney County, Missouri, to create its own smaller county. The county takes its name from another Christian County in Kentucky which had been named in honor of William Christian, a military officer, planter and politician from Virginia during the Revolution­ary War who settled in Jefferson County, Kentucky a year before his death.

This image is part of a much larger collection of historical­ly rich photograph­s from the News-Leader’s photo archive. Each week, the Springfiel­d-Greene County Library will tap into this vast collection and present an interestin­g image “from the darkroom” and share its history. This image is presented in partnershi­p between the Springfiel­d-Greene County Library District and the Springfiel­d News-Leader. For more historical images of the Ozarks, visit: thelibrary.org/fromthedar­kroom.

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