Hoodenpyle Family Memories

(Contributed by Carol Hoodenpyle)

My mother, Ellamae McCafferty Hoodenpyle, came to Denver Harbor from Yoakum Texas in about 1934 with her parents, Howard and Myrle McCafferty. They rented a house on Hoffman until their new home was built in 1935 at 602 Henke (on the corner of Henke and Hershe), when Mama was 16. Grandma lived in that house until the late 1970's when she broke her hip and moved into a nursing home.

Grandma, who was born on September 14, 1886, died on July 1, 1986. Grandpa was a switchman for Southern Pacific Railroad and worked at Englewood Yards. Grandpa had a heart attack and passed away while at work at the Yards on January 6, 1950. Grandpa worked for the railroad since he was a youngster. You might say it was in his "blood". My family has his switchman's lantern.

My grandparents attended Denver Harbor Presbyterian Church, across the street from their new home. At the time, the building was made of wood and it faced Hershe. I have pictures of it then and of the new building that faced Henke.

Mama graduated from Jeff Davis High School in the mid-1930's. I have her yearbooks, but one in particular contains Brian Lacy's signature, among others, on various pages where his pictures appeared.

Mama met Daddy at church. They married on June 20, 1946. She said they had to wait until after the war because Daddy worked nights (12 hours) and she worked days (12 hours) for Levy Brothers. She told me the ladies had to wear nylons to work and during the war, that type of hosiery was considered "priceless".

I remember them mentioning riding a street car in their youth and am almost sure it ran down Lyons Avenue. My daddy, Carl Hoodenpyle, knew the Koetter and Roberts families very well. He used to tell of their "growing up" antics and how all the adults acted as surrogate parents to the other's children while at their homes. I spoke with Myrtis Roberts (George's wife) a few months ago. She still lives in the same house on Hoffman.

Uncle Abe, Daddy's brother, left a journal that's filled with information about what was going on in the world at the time, his activities at Christian Endeavor and the Presbyterian Church, how Daddy was doing after his surgeries at the old Hermann Hospital, and Uncle Abe's career with Gulf Oil, where he worked at least 25-30 years. I have his certificates of appreciation. I also have a lot of pictures. I don't know how interesting they would be to others.


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