Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

May 8, 2013

Kinsloe steps back in time

By Deanna Kirk
Corsicana Daily Sun

Corsicana — Hats, gloves and pearls against a backdrop of 1930’s music was the setting for a fun, festive 75th birthday celebration at Kinsloe House Wednesday.

Lynda Green began the “Step back in time” by reading an article from the Oct. 9, 1916 issue of the Corsicana Daily Sun that began the cry of “Women wanting their own building” and mentioned how “women and girls were liberal in giving of time and effort for the advancement of our community ... weren’t there 2,000 or more (of those) who would pay a $1 per year membership fee?”

Virginia Martin sang a song from a play written in 1961 about Kinsloe House by Patty Harris George to the tune of Swanee River called “Wayback in 1937.”

Way back in nineteen thirty-seven

Long, long ago

When ladies wished to leave their kitchens

They had no place to go ...

Each club was forced to meet in parlors

Some sad affairs

Resulted when the current hostess

Had ONLY six straight chairs.

Then ladies led by Mrs. K. Steele

Had a wild idea,

They dreamed that they could found a clubhouse ...

Foolish! But you are here!!

Gelene Simpson read from the Navarro County History Book Vol. 7 about how Kinsloe House was founded, the fire that destroyed the original house, and the rebuilding. Jo Beth Ellis described the 1930s, a “Decade of Drama,” and told about world events, music, movies, products, and more during that period in our history. Arlene Stewart followed with a detailed description of Orson Welles’ War of the Worlds panic on Oct. 30, 1938.

A fun style show with 1930’s fashions followed a luncheon with a menu from the same time. Barbara Erwin served as commentator, and said, “fashions have moved towards a more romantic, feminine silhouette. After those brash, daring styles of the 1920’s, I know you will be delighted to know the waistline has been restored, the hemline has dropped, and there is renewed appreciation of the bust.”

Lynda Green camped it up and inspired Erwin to say, “”Her ensemble is accented by every strand of pearls she could get her hands on.” She was joined by models Marsha Banks, Monica Benning, Cindy Erwin, Mable Foster, Beth Harper, Clara Hickerson, Joyce Morris and Margaret Thomas.

Erwin had other remarks such as “she is perhaps ready for a tea dance at the ballroom of the Navarro Hotel,” or “these fashions may be purchased at J.M. Dyer,” in reference to Corsicana history of the 1930s.

Past presidents of Kinsloe were recognized, and included Josephine Boyd, Beth Roberts, Louise Stough, Neoma Allen, Pat Stone, Margaret Thomas, Joyce Parker, Diane Cooley, Arlene Stewart, Marsha Banks, Eddie Pevehouse, Cecelia Alexander, Lynda Green and Pearl Skewes. Current president Barbara Watkins, scheduled to make closing remarks, was unable to attend due to a death in the family.

The party closed with a huge 75th birthday cake being served to the strains of “Happy Days Are Here Again.”