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In the Heart of the Blackland Divide

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

City Workers Tackle Water Treatment Problems

New membranes are prepared for insertion into pipes at left. Old ones are stacked vertically just to the right. 
At the City Water Treatment Plant, workers are currently replacing clogged membranes with new ones, which should alleviate recent problems with the plant’s ability to sufficiently reduce the minerals in the City water supply.

The hardness of Roscoe’s particle-rich water causes frequent clogging of the membranes, and their replacement is expensive. So, additional adjustments are underway to ensure that proper filtration of the water doesn’t become so expensive that it necessitates an increase in residents’ water bills.

City residents should once again have clear, filtered water by the end of next week. The City regrets any inconveniences these problems may cause.



In a game played at Trent yesterday evening, the Plowgirls defeated the Lady Gorillas 69-42.

Score by quarters:
                          1          2           3           4
Plowgirls        21        35         53        69
Trent                6         22        29        42

Plowgirls’ individual scoring: Veronica Cuellar 12, Victoria Martinez 12, Kinzie Buchanan 11, Baylor Trevino 9, Alexis Arce 5, Liberty Saenz 5, Ellie Silva 5, Riley Sheridan 4, Bonnie Wilkinson 3, Hannah Ward 2, Ainsleigh Nelson 1.

The Plowgirls’ next games are in the Highland Tournament this weekend. Games begin on Thursday.



Editor’s Note: In past issues of the Hard Times, I have written about old Roscoe and posted old newspaper articles and photos from those early times, but I have never said anything about what was here before then. So, since local news is short this week, I thought I’d write an account of this area’s prehistory, i.e., a Roscoe before there was a Roscoe. I’ve tried to keep it as short and sweet as possible, considering that I’m trying to cover a lot of time in a short space. I’ll divide it into two parts. Part 1 (this week) is about the original inhabitants of the area and the changes that came when the Anglo settlers moved in and pushed them out. Part 2 (maybe next week) will cover the coming of the railroad and the establishment of permanent communities, as well as the transition of unpopulated Katula to the settlement of Vista to the establishment of Roscoe.  

Up until the 1870s, the land on which Roscoe now stands was open grass prairie in a vast region teeming with wildlife—buffalo, deer, antelope, prairie dogs, wildcats, cougars, coyotes, wolves, bears, jackrabbits, rattlesnakes, and others, along with an abundance of turkeys and other birds of all sorts and sizes.

There were also people, not that many, and they were typically only temporary as they were nomadic, settling no lands and moving by season. In this area, they camped along Cottonwood and Champion Creeks, in Bird’s Nest Canyon, along Eagle Creek south of Roscoe, as well as the creeks to the north in Fisher County. And in all, they left evidence of their visits—arrowheads, spearheads, scrapers—some of which indicate that they were in the area as early as 9,000-10,000 years ago. Little else is known, though, about these early inhabitants.

Among the Plains Indians who roamed in Texas when the Europeans came, the Comanche dominated, but they themselves were relative newcomers. Arriving from the north only a century or two earlier, they were previously a poor, footbound offshoot of the Shoshones in the country where Wyoming is now.

Early map showing Comancheria, the land of the Comanche. (Inside red line.)
Their fortunes changed when they learned to catch and tame the wild prairie mustangs, also relative newcomers, descended from horses the Spanish brought from Europe. The Comanches became excellent horsemen, which greatly increased their prowess in both hunting and warfare. They grew in strength and population to hold sway over an area reaching from what is now southern Colorado and Kansas all the way to south and southeast Texas.

Even so, they weren’t the only people moving around the south plains capturing mustangs, hunting buffalo, and living off the land. There were also Apaches and Kiowas, and to a lesser extent Caddos, Cheyennes, and Kickapoos, plus a smattering of Spanish traders, known as Comancheros.

The Comanches were nomads and raiders. Critical to their survival were the great herds of buffalo that moved across the prairie. From them, they got their meat for food and their skins for clothing as well as covering for the tepees they used for shelter.

The Comanche culture prized warfare and domination of the peoples around them, and they succeeded with this lifestyle for many generations. Their warriors thrived on raids in which they took what they wanted and killed those who resisted.

Beginning in the 1830s and 1840s, a new people began to encroach on the Comanche lands from the south and east. These were the English-speaking Americans, both white and black, as well as Germans from the Texas hill country. They had been around in increasing numbers since the early 1830s, coming as colonists to what was then part of Mexico, and indeed the Mexicans initially welcomed their arrival because their settlements created a buffer between the Mexicans and the Comanche raiders. But in 1836 the Anglo settlers rebelled and broke away from Mexico to become the Republic of Texas, and, as new immigrants arrived from the east, a growing number populated the areas bordering the Comanche lands.

Then in 1845, Texas joined the United States, and shortly thereafter the U.S. government began building forts along the Comanche frontier and sending in cavalry to protect the settlers from Indian raids.

In north Texas, Fort Worth, established in 1849, was at that time civilization’s western edge, and anything beyond it was Comanche hunting ground. Nevertheless, settlers continued to push west, and other forts west of Fort Worth were built not too long after—Fort Phantom Hill (present-day Taylor County) in 1851, Fort Chadbourne (near Bronte) in 1852, and Camp Cooper (Throckmorton County) in 1856. From the south, Texans and the Germans northwest of San Antonio were also venturing north into Comanche country, prompting the establishment of Fort Mason (Mason County) in 1851 and Fort McKavett (Menard County) in 1852. These frontier forts never housed that many soldiers; nevertheless, their presence served notice to the Indians that their raids would be resisted and their lands disputed.

Even though there were sporadic attempts at peace and the occasional signing of treaties, the nature of the two cultures was such that war was inevitable. The Anglo-American settlers were not about to let Comanche warriors come into their settlements to take horses and anything else they wanted without a fight. And the Comanche had no intentions of giving up their way of life to these strange, new people who were encroaching on land they considered theirs.

When civil war broke out in the United States in 1861, the federal troops in Texas were called away from the frontier forts to go fight the Confederates back east, and life became more precarious for the pioneers living on the Comanche borderlands. Some Texas-based Confederate troops manned the forts for about a year, but when they were also called away, the only protection provided settlers was usually by local volunteers and the Texas Rangers, although the latter were few and far between. As soon as the Indians figured this out, they attacked, and depredations increased from 1863-1867.

After the Civil War was over, though, federal troops returned to the frontier with the express intent of beating the Indians back and forcing them onto reservations in the Indian Territory (now Oklahoma). A wave of buffalo hunters also entered the area, eager to kill the buffalo and sell their hides. Both the settlers and soldiers welcomed the influx of hunters because they knew that wiping out the great herds would destroy the Indians’ way of life.

The U.S. Army built new forts, among them Fort Griffin (near Albany) in 1867, which became a gathering and jumping-off place for buffalo hunters, and Fort Concho (near San Angelo) also in 1867, manned by black troops, most of them former slaves who had come west to start a new life. Their dark skin and curly beards reminded the Indians of buffalo, so they called them Buffalo Soldiers.

For the next decade, the buffalo hunters roamed west Texas, including the prairie where Roscoe now stands, hunting and killing the buffalo. At the same time the U.S. soldiers, Texas Rangers, settlers, and others engaged the Comanche in major skirmishes, among them the battle at Adobe Walls, where they soundly defeated the native warriors and broke their will to fight on. By 1876 almost all the Indians were on reservations in the Indian Territory, no longer a significant threat to the Anglo settlers; and by 1878, almost all the buffalo had been slaughtered, forever changing the ecosystem of west Texas and destroying any possibility of a return to the old ways that had prevailed up until then. The Comanche nation had been brought to its knees in just a few short years, and its former domain was now open to exploitation by the Anglo-Americans.

Cattlemen began to take advantage of the prairie grasslands formerly inhabited by the buffalo, establishing large cattle ranches. In a short while their herds increased, and for many years cattle were taken in trail drives to the railhead at Abilene, Kansas, where they were then taken by rail in cattle cars to their final destination, the meatpacking plants of Chicago.

In 1876, with the Indians’ defeat imminent, the Texas legislature formed several new counties on land that up to then had simply been considered a small part of the greater Comanche hunting ground. Among them were Nolan, Fisher, Scurry, and Mitchell counties. At that time, there were only a handful of Anglos in the area, and most of those were transient, either buffalo hunters or cattlemen and their hands.

In present-day Snyder, buffalo hunters sold their hides to Pete Snyder, who had a store there in a small settlement known as Hide Town. A similar settlement grew up in what is now Colorado City, where hunters sold their hides and bone-collectors sold bones gathered from the surrounding prairie, which was littered with the decomposed carcasses of buffaloes.

In 1877, Billie Knight established a small store, which began as a dugout, on Sweetwater Creek about three miles southeast of present-day Sweetwater. It primarily served buffalo hunters in the area, and by 1879 a small number of settlers had located there. The settlement was known as Blue Goose, and later that year Knight’s store got a post office called Sweet Water.



Blue skies over Roscoe at sunrise.
The weather this past week has been as about as nice as it ever gets in west Texas. Thanksgiving Day was beautiful with sunshine, little to no wind, and mild temperatures. The high that afternoon was 72°F. Friday and the weekend followed suit with sunny skies and highs of 79°F on Friday, 68° Saturday, and 72° Sunday. On Monday, there was southwest wind and a high of 76°, and yesterday the temperature rose to 78° before a norther blew in yesterday afternoon and cooled things off. Lows were generally in the forties, although on Thanksgiving morning it was only 38°.

The forecast is for slightly cooler temperatures for the next three days with highs of only around 65° and lows in the forties. Saturday will warm up to 72°, Sunday 73°, and Monday 71°, and all three days with winds from the southwest. Lows will be in the fifties.

Rain is a possibility next Tuesday and Wednesday. Forecasters are currently giving this area a 40% chance for both days. This area could use a rain (what else is new?), but farmers who still have cotton in the field are probably hoping it will wait just a bit longer, at least until they can get their crop stripped.

No freezes are predicted before the middle of next week.


Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving!

Dear Readers,

Please excuse the delay in my getting the Hard Times out in a rough and incomplete state. For the past few days, I’ve had at the house two daughters, a son-in-law, a boyfriend, and a dog, all from Chicago. We celebrated an early Thanksgiving here, and they just left this morning to visit other family elsewhere. We had a lot of fun, all of it unrelated to the Roscoe Hard Times.

However, I do have news some readers will be interested to learn, so even if it is a little late, I’m posting it on the assumption that it’s better late than never. Here’s wishing you all a Happy Thanksgiving!

Edwin Duncan
Roscoe Hard Times



The last two weeks have been disastrous for the Plowboys. They have played in two close, hard-fought games and come up short in both. The first was their overtime loss to Hamlin two weeks ago, which cost them a share of the district crown, and the second was their 39-32 loss to Farwell last Thursday night that eliminated them from the playoffs.

The Farwell game, played in Post, was an offensive shootout in which the score was tied three different times with both teams ahead at various points, and neither ever leading by more than a touchdown the entire game.

Farwell scored on their first offensive drive on an 11-yard run and went up 7-0, but the Plowboys responded as Jayden Gonzales passed to Brandon Lavalais for a touchdown on a play covering 43 yards. The extra-point try was no good, and the score was 7-6.  On their next possession, the Plowboys took the their first lead on an 8-yard run by Jose Ortega. The two-point conversion run by Gonzales was good to put the Plowboys up 14-7, the score at the end of the first quarter.

Farwell tied the game 14-14 early in the second quarter, but the Plowboys again took the lead when Gonzales completed a 16-yard touchdown pass to Ortega. The extra-point try failed, and the score was 20-14. On their next play from scrimmage, the Steers tied the game 20-20 on a 57-yard run, but the Plowboys once again responded with Francisco Garcia’s 10-yard touchdown run to make it 26-20, the score at intermission.

In the third quarter, Farwell scored on a 31-yard run to tie the game for the third time, this time 26-26. This was the only score of the third quarter as both defenses stiffened. The Steers scored early in the fourth on a 64-yard Miguel Vasquez run. The extra-point kick was good, and Farwell had its first lead since the first quarter, 33-26. The Plowboys answered on their next series when Ortega broke free for a 57-yard touchdown run. The extra-point try was no good, but the Plowboys were down by only one at 33-32. Unfortunately, with only a minute and a half remaining in the game, Vasquez ran for his second TD of the quarter, this one on a play covering 34 yards. The Plowboys were unable to respond, and Farwell won 39-32.

For the game, Farwell outgained the Plowboys with 624 total yards to the Plowboys’ 345 and 22 first downs to the Plowboys’ 15. Turnovers were even with two each.

Jayden Gonzales completed 17 of 33 passes for 188 yards with 2 TDs and 2 interceptions. Brandon Lavalais led the Plowboy receivers with 8 catches for 137 yards. Jose Ortega caught 3 for 32 yards, Junior Martinez 5 for 21, and Clemente Aguayo 1 for -2. Francisco Garcia led the rushers with 18 carries for 99 yards and 1 TD. Ortega ran 5 times for 73 yards and 2 TDs, Diego Garza 3 for 11, Isiah Wright once for 0, and Gonzales 6 for -26.

Tait Fullwood led the defense with 8½ tackles, followed by Garza with 8, Ortega with7 ½, Nick Limones with 5, Aguayo and Parker Payne with 4½ each, Adrian Lomas with 3½, and several others with 2 or 1.

 Scoring by quarters:
                            1           2         3         4         T
Farwell               7         13        6       13         39
Plowboys          14        12        0         6         32



The Plowgirls’ Varsity team was busy at the Plowgirls’ Basketball Tournament this past weekend, finishing second to Winters, while winning four games and losing two, both to the eventual tournament champions. Eight teams participated in the double-elimination competition: Plowgirls, Plowgirls JV, Paint Rock, Paint Rock JV, Roby, Roby JV, Winters, and Winters JV.

The Plowgirls opened with a 49-26 loss to the Lady Blizzards. Individual Plowgirl scoring was as follows: Kinzie Buchanan 13, Jaci Alexander 8, Veronica Cuellar 3, Baylor Trevino 2.

They next played the Winters JV in the losers’ bracket, and beat them 65-14. Plowgirl scoring: Buchanan 23, Alexander 10, Liberty Saenz 9, Trevino 8, Cuellar 7, Ainsley Nelson 4, Bonnie Wilkinson 4.

On Saturday, they first faced the Roby JV and won 56-36. Plowgirl scoring: Alexander 17, Buchanan 17, Wilkinson 9, Trevino 6, Nelson 4, Saenz 3.

They then beat Paint Rock 44-25. Plowgirl scoring: Buchanan 13, Wilkinson 12, Alexander 9, Cuellar 6, Saenz 2, Trevino 2.

Then they defeated Winters 40-37, for the Lady Blizzards’ first defeat, setting up a final Championship game. Plowgirl scoring: Trevino 12, Buchanan 12, Wilkinson 7, Cuellar 7, Nelson 2.

They then lost to Winters 46-36 in the Championship Finals to finish as Runners-Up with Paint Rock finishing third. Plowgirl scoring: Buchanan 16, Wilkinson 9, Cuellar 7, Trevino 4, Saenz 2.

Then on Monday evening, the Plowgirls played a regularly scheduled game in the RCISD Special Events Center with Post, losing to the Lady Antelopes 43-37.

Individual Plowgirl scoring: Wilkinson 21, Buchanan 11, Saenz 3, Cuellar 2.

Scores by quarters:
                            1          2          3          4
Post                    8         21        33        43
Plowgirls          10        19        22        37

For the week, the Plowgirls’ won four and lost three. Their next game is at Trent with the Lady Gorillas next Tuesday. That will be followed by the Highland Tournament next weekend, November 30-December 2.



The Munday Moguls vs. Wink Wildcats Area Semi-Finals 2A-II playoff game will be played at Plowboy Field this Friday afternoon, November 24. Wink defeated Winters 38-22 last week and Munday defeated Era 47-13.

Kickoff is at 2:00pm and admission is $6 for adults and $3 for students.



Wayne "The Train" Hancock
Wayne “The Train” Hancock, who bills himself as “the King of Juke Joint Swing” will be at the Lumberyard Friday for a return engagement. A songwriter and singer whose eclectic musical style defies simple description, he always puts on an unusual and entertaining show. describes him as a performer who “tosses out a roots mix of old country, roadhouse blues, western dance swing, boogie bop, and straight-up rockabilly, takes what was once old and makes it seem like it’s always been and always will be.”

Since releasing his first album, That’s What Daddy Wants, in 1997, he has produced eight others including Thunderstorms and Neon Signs (1998), A-Town Blues (2001), Viper Melody (2009), and Ride (2013). Singles include “Thunderstorms and Neon Signs,”  “Wild, Free and Restless,” and “Tulsa.”

Hancock will take the stage about 9:30pm. For reservations or more information, call the Lumberyard at 325-766-2457.

Yesterday's strong northeast winds punished the school's flags.


Funeral services for Jane Lee McGlothlin Kummerow, 71, of Sweetwater were held at 2:00pm Sunday, November 19, at Cate-Spencer & Trent Funeral Home Chapel with Cody Paty officiating. She passed away on Wednesday, November 15, at Shannon Medical Center in San Angelo. The family will have a private burial at a later date at Roscoe Cemetery.

Jane was born on May 4, 1946, at Young Hospital in Roscoe to B.E. & Imogene (Graham) Harbour. She was a graduate of Roscoe ISD in l962 and resided in Roscoe for many years before moving to Trent, where she worked for Sid Richardson Gas Company. She later moved to Kerrville, where she met and married Jack Kummerow on July 8, 1995. She worked with special needs children at Ingram ISD. They later moved back to Sweetwater where they resided until their deaths. Jane and husband Jack were active members of Fourth and Elm Church of Christ.

She is survived by her children, Leigh Ann Freeman of Roscoe, Joe Linn McGlothlin and wife Mary of Aspermont, and Leslie Brazelton and husband Billy of Trent; the father of her children, Bruce McGlothlin of Roscoe; step-children, Jack Kummerow II and wife Sharon of Big Sandy, Tennessee; Judy Yingling and husband Lynn of Lakeland, Florida; Jeff Kummerow of Lakeland, Florida, and Jan Planten and husband David of Rosamond, California; grandchildren, Amber Freeman, Stacy Freeman and husband Casey, Toby Freeman, Kristopher McGlothlin, Brad Brazelton and wife Ashleigh, Brittney Brazelton and fiance Daniel Robinson; step-grandchildren, Kristy Broman and husband Adam, Jason Kummerow, Edward Yingling, Sarah Bishop and husband John, Thomas Yingling, Michael Planten, and Zachary Planten, David Foil and wife Christine, Randy Foil, and Jonie Criswell and husband Brandon; numerous great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews, sister, Digi Fry of Lubbock, and brother, Ben Harbour, Jr. and wife Vickie of Avando, Montana.

She was preceded in death by her parents, B.E. & Imogene Harbour, and husband, Jack A.C., Kummerow.

Honorary pallbearers were Joe Paty and Cody Paty.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the M.S. Society, 8111 N. Stadium Drive, Suite 100, Houston, Texas 77054.



Funeral services for Modena Roxie (Terry) Hughes, 86, of Roscoe were at 2:00pm on Sunday at First Baptist Church in Roscoe with Rev. David Draper officiating. Graveside services were at 9:15am yesterday at Fort Logan National Cemetery in Denver, Colorado. She passed away Wednesday, November 15, at her home.

Modena was born January 13, 1931, in Roscoe to the late Charles Edward and Modena Roxie (Jamison) Hughes. She lived in Roscoe until 1957, then moved to Colorado for 40 years and back to Roscoe in 1996. She married Wilburn G. Hughes August 2, 1947, in San Antonio. She was a homemaker and a member of First Baptist Church in Roscoe.

She is survived by her husband Wilburn of Roscoe; son, Wilburn G. Hughes, Jr., and wife Karen of Fort Lupton, Colorado; grandson, Craig Hughes of Fort Lupton, and granddaughter, Raelene Atha of Greeley, Colorado; four great-grandchildren; brother-in-law and sister-in-law Clifton and Joyce Hughes of Bullard, Texas. Modena is also survived by several nieces, nephews and cousins.

She was also preceded in death by her brother Charles Edward Terry, Jr. in 1979.

Pallbearers were the Deacons of Roscoe First Baptist Church: Daylon Althof, Chuck Cathey, David Duncan, Steve Anthony, Larry Black and Joe Smith.


Wednesday, November 15, 2017

City Council Hears Public Works, Police Reports

City Manager Cody Thompson reports to the Council at last night's meeting.
At its monthly meeting in City Hall yesterday evening, the Roscoe City Council conducted routine business and heard reports from the City Manager and Police Chief.

City Manager Cody Thompson reported that the City has ordered new filters for the Reverse Osmosis Water Treatment Plant. They should be arriving soon and will be installed within the next two to three weeks. Estimated cost to the City is $38,000.

Work on the windmill park is ongoing. New lighting will be the next improvement. The City Christmas tree will be put up in Old Town Park next week along with other Christmas decorations.

There was some discussion as to how best to use the fireworks that were never used at the recently rained out West Texas Wind Festival. One idea is to use them for a New Year’s fireworks show, although no decisions have yet been made.

Roscoe was featured at the recent Texas Midwest Community Network meeting in Abilene.

City workers have been cleaning up the Roscoe Cemetery this week. They will soon be working on Maple and Main Streets from Broadway to Front Street.

Police Chief Felix Pantoja reported on Police activities for the month of October. There were 28 warnings for ordinance violations and 37 warnings for traffic violations. Two traffic citations were issued. Five traffic crashes were handled, along with 3 blue-form accidents (less than $1000 damage). There were 114 calls for service.

City Offices will be closed Thursday and Friday, November 23 and 24, for Thanksgiving; Friday, December 22, and Monday, December 25, for Christmas; and Monday, January 1, for New Year’s.



It was “close, but no cigar” for the Plowboys Friday night as their bid for a district co-championship just failed as the Pied Pipers pulled out an overtime victory before a the Hamlin homecoming crowd 21-14. It was a close game from start to finish with several lead changes, and the Plowboys played well in a hostile environment, but in the end Hamlin prevailed. They will have a favorable bracket as playoffs begin this week while the Plowboys will have a tougher row to hoe.

The Plowboys jumped out to an early lead. They received the kickoff, and before the game was a minute old, Jayden Gonzales hit Brandon Lavalais with a 32-yard pass for a touchdown. The 2-point conversion attempt failed but the Plowboys were ahead 6-0. There were no other scores in the quarter as both teams’ defenses settled in.

Hamlin got their first TD in the second quarter on a Jackson Sepeda 25-yard run four minutes before the half. The extra-point kick was good, and the Pipers took the lead 7-6.

The Plowboys capped a drive just before the end of the third quarter with a 2-yard Francisco Garcia run. This time their two-point conversion attempt was successful, and they were back in front 14-7.

Hamlin quickly responded with a 59-yard kickoff return followed with their second touchdown on a 25-yard run. The extra-point kick was good, and the game was tied 14-14. Neither side was able to score again in regulation, and the game went into overtime.

Hamlin had the ball first and their quarterback scored on a third down from the one-yard line. The point-after kick was good, and they led by seven. They then held the Plowboys four downs in a row as a fourth-down pass to the end zone fell incomplete, and the game was over with a final score of 21-14.

After the game, Plowboy coach Jake Freeman told the Abilene Reporter-News sportswriter that despite the loss, he’s proud of the way the Plowboys played. “They played their tails off all night. Obviously, it’s disappointing to lose, but they fought to the very end.”

For the game, turnovers once again hurt the Plowboys, who lost one fumble and had three passes intercepted. Hamlin had 397 total yards to the Plowboys’ 263 and 20 first downs to the Plowboys’ 12. They also held the Plowboys to just 55 rushing yards.

For the game, Jayden Gonzales completed 18 of 36 passes for 211 yards and 1 TD. Jose Ortega led the receivers with 9 catches for 98 yards. Michael Wright caught 4 for 58 yards, Brandon Lavalais 2 for 36 and 1 TD, Clemente Aguayo 2 for 20, and Francisco Garcia 1 for -1.

Garcia was the leading rusher with 14 carries for 41 yards and 1 TD, while Gonzales had 3 carries for 11 yards.

Jose Ortega led the Plowboy defense with 15½ tackles. Tait Fullwood had 9, Clemente Aguayo 7½, Nick Limones 5, Diego Garza 4, Paul Pantoja and Jacob Rainey 3½ each, while several others had 3 or fewer.

Scoring by quarters:
                           1          2          3          4         OT         T
Hamlin             7          0          0          7          7          21
Plowboys         6          0          8          0          0          14

Plowboys Face Farwell in Post Tomorrow

The Plowboys open the playoffs with a bi-district game with Farwell in Post tomorrow evening. It should be a good game. Farwell is 5-4 for the year and 3-1 in district 3-2A II. Like Roscoe, the Steers are coming off a close defeat for their district championship, losing on Friday to Bovina 21-19. They are led by running backs Miguel Vasquez and Lee Roy Cervantes.

Kickoff is at 7:00pm.


Shoppers check out the new inventory at Vickie's Gifts.
Roscoe merchants reported that a record crowd participated in the city’s Christmas Open Sunday this past weekend. Cars lined the streets of downtown Roscoe, and a largely female crowd partook of some early Christmas cheer and good bargains at several Roscoe businesses. Sales were brisk, and the Roscoe Express shuttle transported many from one store to another.



The Plowgirls got their first basketball victory of the season Saturday with a 42-37 win over Rotan. Then they lost to Roby 60-24 at home yesterday evening.

After trailing for most of the Rotan game, the Plowgirls finished strong, outscoring the Lady Yellowhammers 16 to 9 in the fourth quarter.

Individual Plowgirl scoring was led by Jaci Alexander with 14, followed by Bonnie Wilkinson with 10, Kinzie Buchanan 9, Veronica Cuellar 5, Liberty Saenz 2, and Baylor Trevino 2.

The score by quarters:
Roscoe             2          15        26        42
Rotan               8          18        28        37

In yesterday’s game against Roby, the Lady Lions jumped out to an early start and then cruised to the victory.

Individual Plowgirl scoring: Jaci Alexander 6, Bonnie Wilkinson 6, Kinzie Buchanan 5, Veronica Cuellar 4, Ainsleigh Nelson 2, Baylor Trevino 1.

The score by quarters:
Roby                27        35        43        60
Roscoe               7        15        20        24

The Plowgirls will host a tournament this weekend. The Varsity’s first game will be at 3:30pm on Friday in the new gym with the winner of the Winters Varsity-Roby JV game. The Roscoe JV’s first game is Friday at 2:00 in the old gym with the Paint Rock Varsity.


On Saturday evening from 6:00-10:00pm, the Lumberyard will host the annual Sweetwater Ducks Unlimited Banquet with dinner, drinks, and live music.

Both members and the general public are invited. Great gifts, guns, and other items available, along with both a silent and live auction.

For more information, contact Cesar Ortiz at 325-338-2146.

Ducks Unlimited is the world's leader in wetlands and waterfowl conservation.



Monday morning fog.
Following a rain of from ½” to ¾” last Wednesday, the past week has been generally cool and cloudy. Roscoe weatherman Kenny Landfried reported an official .71” for the rain here in town. The temperature was a chilly 33°F during the rain, which fell most of the morning and up to about 2pm, but never went below the freezing mark, sparing the plants a freeze would kill. The high that afternoon rose only to 44°.

Thursday and Friday were also cool with highs of 59° and 55° respectively, but the weekend was warmer with highs of 70° on Saturday and 61° on Sunday, although both days were mostly cloudy, as was Monday with a high of 62°. Yesterday afternoon the sun came out and the temperature rose to a balmy 79°.

Today’s forecast is for a high of 62°, warming to 70° tomorrow, and 85° on Friday with lows in the fifties. On Saturday, a norther will blow through, and the high will drop to 63° with sunny skies. The low will drop to 38°. Sunday’s high will be 59°, Monday’s 66°, and Tuesday’s 68° with clear skies and lows in the forties.

There is no rain in the forecast.



Funeral services for Debbie Lynn Price, 61, were at 2:00pm, Sunday, November 12, at Trinity Baptist Church in Sweetwater with Reverend Matt McGowen officiating. Interment followed at Roscoe Cemetery. She passed away Thursday, November 9, at Covenant Medical Center in Lubbock.

Debbie was born April 26, 1956, in Colorado City to the late James Noel and Jimmie Ruth (Bourland) Decker. She is a graduate of Sweetwater High School and past Homecoming Queen and graduate of Angelo State University. Debbie was a 30 plus year school teacher, retiring four years ago, and had taught at Sweetwater ISD, Highland and Roby Schools. She lived in Nolan County most of her life.

Survivors are her daughter, Callie Jones and husband Casey of Fort Worth; son, Tyson Price and wife Riley Ann of Roscoe; sister, Kelly Miller and husband Mike of Sweetwater; brother, Mike French and wife Stacy of Abilene; three grandchildren and numerous nieces, nephews, great nieces and great nephews.

She was preceded in death by her daughter, Laura DeLynn Price, January 28, 1985; step-father, Claude French, August 22, 2009; and her brother, Ricky Decker, October 13, 2017.

Pallbearers were John Pollard, Gary Schubert, Kenneth Reed, Jake Fullwood, Cole Fullwood and Scott Fullwood. Honorary pallbearers were Gaines Price and Eugene Fullwood.


Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Christmas Open House This Sunday

Shoppers at a previous Christmas Open House.
It’s that time of year once again! Christmas Open House, the popular Sunday afternoon shopping event that launches local merchants and shoppers into the holiday season, is back. Between 1:00 and 6:00pm, it will feature shopping and refreshments and include most of Roscoe’s downtown businesses: Vickie’s Gifts, Wildflower Boutique, Roscoe Thrift Store, the Rockin’ S Cantina, McVey’s Nursery, Main Street Antiques, and the Lumberyard. Vendors will also be selling items in the Community Center.

Roscoe’s newest business, The Cotton Belle, will also participate by having its soft opening on Sunday. It is owned and operated by Misty Deloera and is located at 716 Broadway, the former location of McFaul’s Garage.

The Roscoe Express shuttle will operate all afternoon carrying visitors from one business to the next at no charge.



Jose Ortega (2) carries the ball. (Football photos by Tamara Alexander)
It took the Plowboys a while to get untracked against Tahoka Friday evening, but once they did, they quickly took over the game and cruised to a decisive victory, winning by 24 points and setting up a showdown with Hamlin in Hamlin this week.

The first quarter was scoreless. The Plowboys received the opening kickoff, but on the second play from scrimmage, Jayden Gonzales threw an interception, continuing the Plowboys’ turnover woes from the previous game. However, they held the Bulldogs and eventually got the ball back. After making a first down, the Plowboys were on their own 30-yard line when the center snapped the ball over Gonzales’ head. It bounced all the way back to the 9, where Gonzales fell on it, and the Plowboys were once again forced to punt. Tahoka was having no luck against the Plowboy defense, and the quarter ended 0-0.

The scoring didn’t begin until almost half of the second quarter was gone, and the Bulldogs were the first to break the ice. After another Gonzales interception and runback, they set up on the Plowboy 16 and completed a pass over the middle for the game’s first touchdown. The extra-point kick was good, and Tahoka was ahead 7-0.

Unfortunately for them, their lead would last exactly one play, because on the ensuing kickoff, Jose Ortega caught the ball on the 14-yard line and returned it 86-yards for the Plowboys’ first TD. A pass from Gonzales to Brandon Lavalais successfully completed the 2-point conversion attempt, and the Plowboys took the lead 8-7. That touchdown shifted the momentum that had taken the Bulldogs over a quarter to build, and what happened next opened the floodgates for the Plowboys.

Ortega’s onside kickoff was recovered by Lavalais, and three plays later Francisco Garcia ran 22 yards for the second Plowboy TD. The 2-point conversion was again good, and the Plowboys led 16-7. That second TD took the wind out of the sails for the Bulldogs, and before the quarter was over, the Plowboys scored twice more. Both were Garcia TD runs after quick drives, one for 14 yards and the other for one yard. At halftime the score was 30-7, and the game’s outcome was no longer in doubt.

There was no scoring in the third quarter, but both teams scored in the fourth. The Plowboys extended the lead to 37-7 when Garcia ran in from the four, and Tahoka followed with their second TD to narrow it to 37-13, the game’s final tally.

Scoring by quarters:
                           1          2         3          4          T
Plowboys         0         30        0          7          37
Tahoka             0           7         0         6          13

For the game, Francisco Garcia led the Plowboy rushers with 15 carries for 132 yards and 4 TDs. Jayden Gonzales had 4 carries for 40 yards, Diego Garza 1 for 7 yards, Jose Ortega 1 for 5, and Clemente Aguayo 1 for -2. Gonzales completed 18 of 33 passes with 2 interceptions. Ortega led the receivers with 8 catches for 91 yards; Garcia caught 5 for 55, Aguayo 2 for 10, Isiah Wright 2 for 10, and Brandon Lavalais 1 for -3, along with 3 2-point conversion catches.

On defense, Ortega had 8½ tackles, Parker Payne 5½, and Tristan Brooks 4½; Jacob Rainey, Aguayo, and Nick Limones all had 4, while several others had 3 or fewer.

Plowboys Play Pipers for Piece of District Title

Plowboy football fans have known all season that the team’s chance for a district title would ride on the outcome of the Hamlin game. The Pied Pipers enter the game 8-2 on the year and 4-0 in district. Both the Plowboys and Seagraves are 3-1, so if the Plowboys defeat Hamlin, all three teams will be 4-1 (assuming Seagraves beats Roby Friday), making for a three-team co-championship. If that happens, the playoff rankings will be decided by a points-scored system, but first the Plowboys must beat Hamlin in Hamlin. Otherwise, they finish third in district.

Kickoff is at 7:00pm Friday.


by Shelley Gunter
Indianapolis, Indiana. – Hannah Ward of the Roscoe FFA Chapter won a silver medal at the National FFA Agriscience Fair at the 90th annual National FFA Convention held October 25-28 in Indianapolis, Indiana. She competed against other Agriscience projects from across the Nation.

Ward participated in the Animal Systems category, division one. The Agriscience Fair fuses the traditional science fair with agriculture. FFA members conduct cutting edge agricultural research to compete in categories such as biochemistry and microbiology, environmental science, zoology, botany and engineering.

The Agriscience Fair was made possible by the Cargill, Chevrolet, John Deere, Sygenta, Bayer, DuPont, and Farmer’s Pantry.

The 90th annual National FFA Convention recorded approximately 60,000 members and guests. Members of the nation’s largest agricultural youth leadership organization spent the week attending leadership workshops, participating in events and activities, being recognized for their achievements, and serving as the legislative body for the National FFA Association.

FFA gives students the opportunity to apply practical classroom knowledge to real world experiences through local, state and national competitions. For more information about the National FFA, visit



RCISD STEM Research Center
Texas A&M Vice Chancellor James Hallmark, along with Assistant Vice Chancellor Irma Harper and Agriculture Professor Gary Briers, will be flying into Avenger Field tomorrow morning to meet with RCISD Superintendent Kim Alexander and other Roscoe administrators and faculty, Roy Bartells of Western Texas College, and Dr. Kelty Garby of Educate Texas.

The purpose of the visit is to discuss the implementation of a four-year degree program at Roscoe Collegiate. While here, the group will receive an overview and Q & A session of the Roscoe Collegiate System Model before taking a tour of Edu-Vet and the Engineering Center, the main campus, and Edu-Drone. After lunch, they will discuss the steps necessary to access upper-division courses and bachelor’s degrees at Roscoe before the A&M officials return to College Station.


by Ann Klepper Etheredge

The Roscoe High School Class of 1962 had 36 members—18 girls & 18 boys.  Eleven of those classmates met in Abilene November 3 & 4 for their 55th reunion.  Lots of good food, memories & laughter were shared by all.  Those attending are pictured below.

Front row:  Pat (Nations) Althof, Ruth Ellen (Richburg) Maddux, Betty (Parks) Graham, Lynda (Hastings) Stafford, Kathryn (Kerby) Rister. Back row: Warren Haney, Darrell Berryhill, Winford Martin, Ann (Klepper) Etheredge, Retha (Dooley) Antoniello, Doris (Head) Harvey.


Liberty Saenz prepares to throw the ball to Veronica Cuellar (30).
The Plowgirls opened their basketball season at home against Robert Lee yesterday evening with a 41-31 loss. They looked a little rough around the edges, as is to be expected in an opener, but showed a lot of hustle despite losing. They were tied 13-13 in the early going, but the Lady Steers went on an eight-point run to go up 21-13, and the Plowgirls never managed to catch them again after that.

Individual scoring for the Plowgirls was as follows: Jaci Alexander 13, Veronica Cuellar 10, Bonnie Wilkinson 4, Ainsleigh Nelson 2, Baylor Trevino 2.

The score by quarters:
Robert Lee        11        21       27        41
Plowgirls             8        13       19        31

Their next game will be on Saturday at Rotan, followed by Roby next Tuesday. Their next home games will be in the Roscoe Girls’ Tournament next weekend with Winters, Paint Creek, and Bronte, November 16-18.



The puddle in my driveway this morning.
It's been another week of mixed weather. The latter part of last week and up through Sunday was warm with sunny skies, southwest winds, and highs generally in the eighties. Wednesday’s high was 83°F and Thursday’s 86° before dropping to 76° on Friday. Then on Saturday and Sunday it rose to 88° and 89° before falling to 71° on Monday. A norther blew in Monday night, and yesterday’s high was only 56° with breezy north wind, and this morning’s low was 33° with predictions of frost. A light rain fell early this morning and is still sprinkling as I write this. The total rainfall so far recorded by my rain gauge is .3".

Today’s high will be only around 42° with rain predicted for the remainder of this morning. However, tomorrow should be warmer with a high of 58° and a low of 42° and mostly cloudy skies. Friday’s high should be 61° with a low of 51° and Saturday’s high back up to 71°. Next week’s highs should all be in the sixties and seventies with lows of around 50°.


Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Co-op Gin Lot Fire Destroys Over $500,000 Worth of Cotton

Modules burn on the gin lot last Friday morning. (Photo by Johnny Hermosillio)
Roscoe’s Central Rolling Plains Co-op Gin was the site of a spectacular module fire that started about 2:00 early Friday morning and burned with such intensity that video of the blaze made the national news on the ABC network.

(For the ABC article with video, click here.)

The fire started when burrs caught on fire, and high northeast winds quickly spread it to the modules. Gin Manager Larry Black reported that 106 of 438 modules on the gin lot were destroyed, resulting in the loss of around a half-million dollars.

The fire was essentially out by Friday evening, and the remainder was buried by Saturday. The gin’s insurance covered everything on its lot, so the loss is not to the Co-op nor to the farmers whose modules were destroyed.

In addition, the heavy smoke from the fire ruined some 80 acres of John Bergstrom’s unharvested cotton immediately southwest of the gin lot.

The Co-op Gin wants to thank Sweetwater Fire Chief Grant Madden and the Sweetwater Fire Department, the Roscoe Volunteer Fire Department, the Snyder Fire Department, and all the volunteers who helped fight the blaze early Friday morning.

Along with the gin lot fire, there have also been several recent stripper fires. This year’s cotton, unusually dry from the dry September, is fluffy and can be ignited by a single spark. The Hughes family stripper was destroyed and others have been damaged by fires caused by the dry cotton. These include strippers belonging to the Williamses, Parrotts, Ormans, and Cornutts.



Dryland cotton just southeast of town.
Cotton farmers are anticipating a banner crop this year, and Gin Manager Larry Black is optimistic that Roscoe’s Central Rolling Plains Co-op Gin may gin over 100,000 bales, just as it did in 2007. The crop is excellent and exceeding all expectations. Stripper operators are reporting yields of a bale to a bale and a half and more per acre for dryland cotton, and up to three and more for irrigated.

Cotton is best in the Roscoe and Champion areas, where the July and August rains came at the right time. The Wastella area, especially the farms that missed those rains, is good in some places and not so good in others, while Hermleigh, Dunn, Ira, and Snyder will make even less.

Gary Pieper of Gary Pieper Crop Insurance notes that years ending in the number 7, i.e., 1977, 1987, 1997, 2007, and now 2017 have all produced excellent crops. He offers no explanation for this but just says that it’s an interesting fact.

The Co-op Gin, which hit some snags getting started this year, has now ginned 2,000 bales and is in full operation.



Clemente Aguayo (6) is tackled after catching a pass for a short gain. (Football  photos by Tamara Alexander)
It was a long night for the Plowboys at Seagraves on Friday as the Eagles surprised them with a 42-19 home victory. On the Abilene Reporter-News’ “Ten Shockaz of the Week,” the game’s outcome was number two, behind only Sweetwater’s upset loss to Seminole. The loss resulted primarily from three costly second-half turnovers that kept the Plowboy offense off the field and gave the momentum to the Eagles.

The first quarter was basically a stalemate with neither side scoring until Seagraves made a TD on a 31-yard run with only 4 seconds left and went up 7-0. Roscoe tied it up a couple of series later when Jayden Gonzales hit Jose Ortega on a pass play covering 39 yards. Ortega’s extra-point kick was good, and the score was 7-7. Then on Seagraves’ next possession, a bad snap to the quarterback at the Seagraves 33 resulted in the ball going over his head. He ran back and tried to pick it up, but Paul Pantoja sacked him, and the ball went into the end zone, where Tait Fullwood covered it for a touchdown. The conversion attempt failed, but the Plowboys were ahead 13-7. Shortly before the half, however, Seagraves scored on a one-yard run, and at halftime the game was tied 13-13.

Unfortunately, the Plowboys were outscored 29-6 in a disastrous second half. In the third quarter, Seagraves scored twice, the first on a 14-yard pass to take the lead 19-13 and the second on a 1-yard run that extended it to 27-13. The Plowboys answered with a 54-yard pass play from Gonzales to Brandon Lavalais, but the conversion attempt failed, and the Eagles led 27-19 at the end of three.

They added two more TDs in the fourth quarter, winning the game by 23 points, 42-19.

For the game, the Eagles doubled the Plowboys in time of possession, 32:34 to 15:18, and in first downs, 26 to 13. The Plowboy defense was unable to stop the Eagles for most of the game as Seagraves racked up 474 yards with 353 of those on the ground.

Jayden Gonzales completed only 13 of 31 passes with 2 TDs and 3 interceptions. Francisco Garcia had only 9 carries for 31 yards, while Gonzales had 8 for 29 yards. Brandon Lavalais caught 9 passes for 164 yards and 1 TD, and Jose Ortega caught 3 for 64 yards and 1 TD. Clemente Aguayo caught 1 for 5 yards.

On defense, Tait Fullwood and Ortega both had 9½ tackles, while Parker Payne had 9. Paul Pantoja and Clemente Aguayo both had 6, Brandon Lavalais and Jacob Rainey 5, and 7 others had 3 or fewer.

The Plowboys now have one district loss, and so does Seagraves after losing to Hamlin 34-28 their previous game. Since Hamlin is still undefeated in district, the Plowboys now must beat Tahoka at home this week and Hamlin in Hamlin next week in order to create a three-way tie for the district championship. If they can do that, then the final rankings will be decided by a point system determined from the tied teams’ game scores.

Brandon Lavalais heads for the end zone in third-quarter action at Seagraves.
Plowboys vs. Tahoka Here Friday

Tahoka is 3-5 on the year and 1-2 in the district, losing to Seagraves 42-6 and beating Roby 12-6, before falling on Friday to Hamlin 32-27. It’s a must-win game for the Plowboys—and one that they should win if Tahoka’s previous scores are any indicator. The Bulldogs are led on offense by Juwan Hamilton, a small but very quick running back, and on defense by 6’2”, 215 lineman Kevin White.

Kickoff at Plowboy Field is at 7:00pm.



This morning's sunrise.
Since a cold front moved through last Thursday, temperatures have been considerably below average for this time of year. Thursday afternoon had a high of 87°F, but by Friday the high had dropped to a chilly 57° with high north winds of 28mph and gusts up to 37mph. The winds died down on Saturday, but the high was only 58° and the low was 33°. Sunday was sunny and warmer with southwest winds and a high of 76°, but Monday was cool again with a high of 61°, and yesterday was still cooler with a high of 56° and a low of 37°. Yesterday morning was also cloudy with a light rain that totaled .12”.

The weather is due for a big change today when the high reaches 84° with sunny skies and southwest winds of around 15mph, starting a warm spell that will last into the first part of next week. Tomorrow and Friday should be similar with highs of 83° and 86°. Lows will be back into the mid to upper fifties and climb into the low sixties on Saturday. Saturday’s high is expected to be 86° and Sunday’s 90°. Winds will remain from the southwest, and highs should be in the eighties until next Wednesday or so when another cold front moves in.

There is no rain in the forecast.


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