The Armored Sentinel (Temple, Tex.), Vol. 1, No. 14, Ed. 1 Thursday, April 9, 1953 Page: 21 of 31
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The rccreation story of Killeen
is one of a gargantuan battle of
Killeen once was a sleepy little
country town with a couple of
thousand population. Then Fort
Hood hit like a Midwest tornado
blowing in hundreds and later
thousands of new people.
Nothing in Killeen escaped a
sever case of growing pains—least
of all recreation facilities. Recrea
tion too was left almost hopelessly
in the wake of the expansion.
And there it might have stayed
but for the fact that Killeen is one
of the most sports and recreation
minded communities anywhere.
A long uphill struggle ensued
and this summer will be climaxed
by the establishing of a year-round
city recreation program to be built
around existing facilities plus a
new $45000 muncipally owned swm-
ming pool to be completed by mid
The pool will be located in city
park which already boasts con
crete lighted tennis courts swings
skiies and other playground equip
ment barbeque pits and picnic
Additions to that park—promoted
by the full summer recreation pro
gram to be unreeled this season—
will be a lighted baseball diamond
shuffle board slabs and probably
badminton courts and other ath
letic equipment and facilities.
One or more full-time recreation
directors will be hired for the sum
mer months and by next year a
full-time director will be employed
by the city.
The part-time men will have a
fine outline by which to build their
program for this summer. The out
line was drawn up by a man who
for many years was a city recrea
tion director high school coach
and post athletic director at Fort
This outline will be followed as
closely as possible this summer.
It includes a baseball and soft-
ball program enormous for a com
munity the size of Killeen. The
school now has a lighted ball park
suitable for baseball and softball.
This field will be supplemented with
at least two new diamonds by the
time the program gets underway.
Baseball and softball leagues will
be set up for kids age 8 to 19 and
for girls as well.
Little League loops have flourish
ed here for four years now and
this seasons activities promise to
be the most successful of the lot.
Junior League Baseball will be
installed here for the first time this
summer. This is a set-up which pro
vides baseball for boys too old for
the Little League and too young
for Junior American League Base
ball and one which has proven a
rousing success in many cities
throughout the state.
In addition there will be softball
leagues installed for younger boys
Still more for the diamond fans!
Killeen again this year has an en
try in the Cen-Tex League a cix*-
cuit that is beginning its 24th sea
son as one of the oldest if not the
oldest organized baseball league in
And city-wide softball always has
been one of the most popular aspect
of local athletics. Last season the
local outfit Wells Plumbers
hosted the National Softball Con
gress state softball tournament.
The Plumbers won it and went on
to the NSC World tourney in
Phoenix Ariz. where they made
a creditable showing before be
ing eliminated from a meet that
featured the top softball teams in
The great success of the state
tournament prompted NSC offi
cials to return the meet here
again next August. This time the
winner will journey to Salt Lake
City for the World affair.
The new swimming pool will
be the pride and joy of the en
tire populace. A $45000 bond
election to raise funds for the
project passed recently by an
overwhelming majority and ex
citement and anticipation runs
high concerning the pool and the
resultant field of recreation it
will open up.
Swimming meets local and
regional—are planned plus a mul
titude of other activities from
swimming and diving instruction
to bathing beauty contests.
THE WAY THINGS USED TO JLOOK This photo shows what
Fort Hood used to be when it was Camp Hood and was a tank de
stroyer center back in the early days of World War II.
FINE PLACE TO LIVE These baracks recently have been opened at Fort Hood and now
occupied by troops at the biggest army camp which is Killeen's neighbor.
Recreation Facilities Catching Up
Civic clubs working in con
junction with the city are cur
rently engaged in raising 'money
to aid the overall program. New
parks with brand-new equipment
arc ready to spring up in most
of the new additions.
Summer-time recreation here
always includes the annual city-
wide golf tournament which has
in the past been held on the Lam
pasas course. But in the forsee-
able future Killeen is expected to
ha\'e its own course. The course
will probobly be built on the
plot of land on the Bel ton reser-
vior which has been requested by
Not only will this land provide
a place for the. golf course but it
will furnish" convenient fishing
Killeen High School and Ele
mentary School athletics have de
veloped until the Kangaroo
athletic teams are among the
most feared in the area.
The high school football team
went to the state class AA quar
terfinals last season and other
sports play important parts in the
local program. With the consoli
dation of Killeen and Fort Hood
High Schools the school is expect
ed to be lipped to class AAA with
in a couple of years.
The Killeen elementary "Rool-
ets" the tough talented elemen
tary school athletes last season
won championships in football and
basketball and have strong soft-
ball and track programs.
Two drive-in theaters and four
theatres bring the latest movies to
Local civic clubs offer both re
laxation and service to the com
munity. Minstrel shows circuses
community parties turkey shoots
inter-club sporting events and
many other activities offer amuse
ment and funds for civic projects.
A multitude of women's clubs of
fer a well rounded program to
The arts are not forgotten
either. Last summer a Town
Hall series was begun in Killeen
and is designed to bring the best
in classical music here.
These things are the culmination
of years of work of catching up
with the skyrocketing growth of
the city. The ultimate goal is
yet to be achieved but it appears
on the horizon.
with the large number of living
units recently constructed in Kil
leen. More and more Killeen is
becoming a good place to shop.
In 1952 the city building inspec
tor reported 76 new or completely
remodeled business buildings in
Killeen. Existing business establish
ments moved into about 26 of these
buildings but included were 50
new firms. These new additions
give Killeen some of the most
52 Years Of Service
Behind Killeen Bant
Fifty two years of continuous
service is the record of one of Kil-
leen's oldest business institutions
the First National bank.
Organized Fob. 27 1901 with a
capital stock of $25000 this bank
has grown to bo the third largest
banking institution in Bell county.
Some of the most outstanding
men in the banking business of
Central Texas have been associat
ed with the First National of Kil
leen in its long and successful
business career. John W. Pace
still going strong in Ft. Worth at
the age of 95 Charles M. Camp
bell W. E. Hudson Will Rancier
Sam Rancier W. E. Wicker J. L.
Swope Claude McBride D. M.
Norman J. W. Norman Spencer
Young. P. L. Downs W. A. Haynes
and M. V. Fergus are among the
many. During the past decade the
bank has been in the hands of T.
H. Minor W. A. Haynes G. C.
Black and C. R. Clements.
In October 1946 controlling in
terest in the bank was purchased
by Roy J. Smith a former lieuten
ant commander in the navy and
who had been a state and national
bank examiner. C. R. Clements
remained as vice president and
During the past six years capi
tal accounts of the bank have
grown from $62000 to $392000 at
the end of 1952.
The bank showed its faith in an
expanding city when it moved to
new quarters in September 1947.
There' No Housing Shortage
In City Of Killeen Any More
By JIM TANNER
Need a home an apartment a
Killeen offers a variety of good
housing and the prices are reason
This city of 12000 long was over
crowded and didn't have too much
in the way of housing accommoda
Growth Of Business Area Keeps
Pace With Killeen's Residences
The business area and places of modern places of busrness in Cen-
business have grown and kept pace tral Texas.
Grocers probably have made the
greatest advancement. Killeen is
now served by five of the most
modern super markets in this area
and by 18 drive-in and neighbor
hood stores. Grocery prices in Kil
leen are very competitive.
Killeen is now served by a five
day a week afternoon daily. An
other concrete evidence of the
community has become of age
business-wise. It also has a widely
Department stores and specialty
stores are now showing the latest
styles at prices that compare
favorably with those of any other
community in this area. Many of
them occupy the new buildings
mentioned above. All nationally
advertised brands of merchandise
are available in Killeen's stores.
Progressive furniture stores are
operating in Killeen. Any national
ly known brands of furniture are
available here also.
Rounding out the business com
munity of Killeen are all the other
modern facilities demanded by the
average shopper. Auto supply
stores service stations cleaners
laundries jewelers hardware
stores ealing places and all neces
sary services are plentiful in Kil
Many of the firms of Killeen will
be holding "open house" on April
12. All of them invite inspection
and comparison and welcome th
opportunity to be of service.
KILLEEN OPEN HOUSE
Additional space renovated in 1950
gives the bank eight inside teller
windows and a sidewalk teller
window. A facility employing three
full time employes is operated on
Headquarters avenue at Ft. Hood
for the convenience of civilian and
Officers and employees have in
creased in number since 1946 from
seven to 42 at the present.
Faith in business men and in
dividuals both civilian and mili
tary has been exhibited by the
First National as it has played its
part in community development.
Loans at the end of 1946 totaled
$291000 and today exceed $2300-
000. Likewise the community has
shown its faith in its banking in
stitution as deposits have increas
ed from $2125000 in 1946 to $10-
730000 at the end of 1952.
"The First National Bank of Kil
leen is proud of the record of its
employees both in civil and mili
tary life" Roy Smith president
said. Both officers and employes
have taken leadership in civic as
well as religious activities. Twelve
of 18 male employees are veterans
of one of the three great wars
among them being a Purple Heart
winner and one who was a POW
for 39 months.
A cordial invitation to visit the
First National Bank of Killeen is
extended to all at all times and
especially at Open House Sunday
Mr. Smith said.
But the housing shortage is a
thing of the past.
Builders and contractors and
businessmen with faith in the fu
ture of Killeen and Central Texas
went to work a few years ago.
Big results weren't forthcoming
until the past year because as fast
as the houses were built they would
However in 1952 1ho construc
tion caught up with the big de
mand for housing and now there's
plenty of housing for everyone.
There are hundreds of houses
and apartments furnished or un
furnished that are immediately
available. More than 1000 units
were built last year after this was
declared a critical defense area.
These were modernized duplexes
of one two or three bedrooms.
They are furnished or unfurnish
ed whichever you desire.
Contractors also built in the past
couple of years hundreds of
homes. You can have your choice
of a good home for a reasonable
Low down payments and low
monthly payments have long made
it easy for a Killeen resident to
own a home of his own.
But if you're not interested in
owning your own home you can
take your choice of rental pro
perty. Rents are as low or lower
than those of other cities.
If you live out of Killeen and
work at Fort Hood you'll find great
savings by selecting from among
Killeen housing and moving here.
The biggest saving of course would
be from not having to drive 30 or
40 miles back and forth to work.
Killeen's tremendous growth is
accounted for in residential and
commercial construction records.
Last year nearly $4000000 in
new homes and commercial build
ings was built.
The year before the city had a
whopping $9000000 in construction.
Business firms have kept pace
with the rapid residential develop
Nearly a hundred new business
buildings were built here last year
providing a splendid shopping area
for residents of Killeen
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The Armored Sentinel (Temple, Tex.), Vol. 1, No. 14, Ed. 1 Thursday, April 9, 1953, newspaper, April 9, 1953; Temple, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth254326/m1/21/: accessed July 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Casey Memorial Library.