Bosque County: Land and People (A History of Bosque County, Texas) Page: 19
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Jacob Olson came to Texas from Norway
in 1858 when he was four years of age and
spent the remainder of his lifetime as a
resident of Norse and Clifton. During these
years he collected a large variety of articles
of historic interest.
For a number of years Mr. Olson's collec-
tion was housed in the Clifton College
Administration Building, and in 1920 he
willed that valuable collection to Clifton
College with the stipulation that it never
would leave Bosque County.
When Clifton College was merged with
Texas Lutheran College in 1954 and most of
the college buildings were taken over by the
Clifton Lutheran Sunset Home Corporation,
that corporation provided land and a build-
ing upon its grounds in which to house and
to display Mr. Olson's artifacts.
In 1957, after more and more contributions
had been added to the collection, interested
persons throughout Bosque County formed
the Bosque Memorial Museum Corporation.
Mrs. Ole J. Hoel, Sr. (Sadie Swenson) can be
credited with being the guiding force behind
the museum corporation's organization. She
also served as its first president.
Since 1957 the museum's space has been
enlarged to double its original area, and
another 90x20-foot addition soon will be
made as the result of a $100,000.00 grant
Present officers of the corporation are Mrs.
Dan E. Orbeck, president; Mrs. W.L. Spieler,
1st vice-president; Mrs. C.K. Word, Jr.,
secretary; Mrs. George B. Arnold, treasurer;
and Mrs. Jack Kirton, receptionist.
Mrs. W.B. Bertelsen, Sr., Herman Burg-
dorff, JoAnn Hoel, Mrs. Hollis L. Manly,
Mrs. G.E. Jackson, Mrs. Shelby L. Richard-
son, and Cecil C. Wallace are trustees;
Derwood Johnson and Dr. William C. Pool,
Jr. are honorary trustees; and Gene C. Aars,
Irvin Grimland, Dr. George Larson, and C.
Edwin Olsen serve as directors.
Clifton's first attempt to become an incor-
porated city was on April 25, 1891. At that
time an election was held in the Kell and
Gibbs Store with Frank Kell, a son of Francis
Marion Kell, presiding. There were 29 votes
cast for and six votes cast against incorpora-
tion. T.A. DeHart was elected mayor.
That election was contested and ruled
invalid, and it was not until June 12, 1901,
that Clifton residents again voted for incor-
poration. That election also was contested
and taken to court by the opposition. How-
ever, on June 9, 1902, the Court of Civil
Appeals of the 2nd Supreme Judicial District
of Texas declared the results of the 1901
From then until the present time Clifton's
mayor and city councilmen have served
without salary but nearly always with fore-
sight and dedication for the betterment of the
City of Clifton.
Actual day-to-day operation of the city
throughout most of the past years has been
handled by a paid City Secretary. Holding
the longest tenures in that capacity have
been: W.C. Hurst, E.B. Harris, and M.R.
For a short period in the early 1970's
Clifton also had a paid City Manager.
Mrs. Don Barron currently is serving as
City Secretary, and James Otis Womack now
holds the recently-created position of Public
Works Director. Prior to his assuming that
office he was City Secretary and Mrs. Barron
was City Treasurer, also a relatively new city
In July of 1984 the City of Clifton had 23
full-time employees; total expenditures for
the fiscal year 1982-1983, ending on Septem-
ber 30, were $710,610.08; and budget figures
projected for the year 1984-1985 are
At the end of the 1982-1983 fiscal year city
bonds outstanding, including principal and
interest, amounted to $213,785.00; in 1981
and 1982 the city also became responsible for
notes amounting to $23,638.82.
During its history Clifton has had three
specific edifices which have been designated
as city halls. First of those buildings was
located on North Avenue E just north of the
Brazos Banc Savings Association building;
cornerstone of the second one, erected along
West 5th Street upon the present vacant lot
across from White's Auto Store, was dedicat-
ed on October 24, 1924; and the third one is
the current city hall and civic center on West
3rd Street which was completed in 1974 at an
approximate cost of $250,000.00.
Having served the longest terms as mayors
of the City of Clifton during the years have
been P.E. Schow, Sr., who was mayor when
the city hall on West 5th Street wad dedicat-
ed, Tom C. Parks, Ed Handley, E.K. Parker,
Oris E. Pierson, and Charles M. Isenhower,
who was serving in that role when the present
city hall and civic center was dedicated.
J.W. Butler and J.T. Addickes opened
Clifton's first bank in 1895, and it was located
on West 3rd Street in the west end of what
for many years was known as the Brandes
Building and now houses Commercial Print-
At one time in the early 1900's Clifton
simultaneously had three banks.
In 1904 the First National Bank was
established with J.W. Rudasill as its first
president and R.R. Waldrop as its last. It was
on January 1, 1930, that the Farmers State
Bank assumed all of the assets and liabilities
of the First National Bank, and the two banks
Clifton State Bank, which several years
later evolved into the Farmers State Bank
and finally into the city's current InterFirst
Bank, Clifton, was initiated on July 14, 1906.
It was organized by J.M. Jenson and 64 other
stockholders. In the beginning H.H. Baley
was named president and Mr. Jenson cashier.
From 1914 until the early 1920's business
was booming in Clifton, which resulted in a
third bank's opening its doors on March 12,
1921. That bank, The Clifton National Bank,
was organized by Dr. C.M. Moore and R.S.
Clements along with 51 other stockholders.
Although he was the president and princi-
pal stockholder, Dr. Moore, a practicing
physician, never actively participated in the
bank's daily operation. It was handled by Mr.
Clements as cashier.
During 1924 that bank paid off its deposi-
tors and its stockholders and closed its doors.
Of interest to note is that on January 6,
1906, J.M. Jenson was elected assistant
cashier of the First National Bank. He
resigned that position on July 3, 1906, to
become affiliated 11 days later with the
Clifton State Bank.
Also Tom C. Parks was elected to the
Board of Directors of the First National Bank
on January 3, 1908, and on September 17 of
that year was named second vice-president.
He resigned that position and affiliation on
, -- .
Historical Marker, Clifton College
Ground Breaking for Chapel, Clifton Sunset
Home-Odie Pederson (first administrator) with
Goodall-Witcher Hospital, opened 1939
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Bosque County History Book Committee. Bosque County: Land and People (A History of Bosque County, Texas), book, 1985; Dallas, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth91038/m1/35/?q=campbell: accessed September 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Denton Public Library.