Monday, April 15, 2013

Back in Time - Mrs. Jones

Lining up for the Homecoming parade
Irene Jones on go-cart and Jerry Glasgow, standing
Pavillion High School
approximately 1968
Pavillion, WY
I love this photo because it shows how much Pavillion has changed. The street is now paved (only Main Street was paved in the 60s), and the Union 76 station has long since closed. The nearest place to purchase gasoline today is nearly 10 miles down the road in Kinnear. After this photo was taken, the Union 76 station became a laundromat, a private home, and then later a Fifties Diner. I'm not sure what it is today.

Behind the Panthers Go-Go sign you can see other parade entries - a flat bed with some individuals dressed as football players, a motor bike, and a pick-up pulling a flat bed trailer that was probably a class float, and a tractor that was either waiting for the parade to pass or was pulling another float. The Homecoming parades drew a crowd along Main Street, which is probably less than a quarter mile long.

Another reason that I love this photo is that it reminds me how much fun Mrs. Jones was to be around and how much she enjoyed life. Not many mothers in the late 60s even knew how to drive a go-cart much less drive it in the Homecoming parade!

Irene and her husband Eldon owned and operated the Basketeria, a local grocery store, for many years, and their daughter is still one of my close friends.

I don't know if she realized it, but Irene was a role model for many girls in our small community. She encouraged girls to make a life for themselves and to be independent. She was quick to offer a sympathetic ear and to offer advice when it was needed.

During my junior high and high school years, I went to several slumber parties at the Jones' home. Irene was always a gracious hostess for those over-night invasions. In my opinion, anyone who allows a group of six or seven giggling girls into their home for not one but several nights certainly deserves a medal.

Irene had a very distinct voice: if I close my eyes, I can still hear the lilt of her words and the tone of her voice.

Several times, I accompanied the Jones family to community concerts in Riverton and Lander. Attending those concerts was special: growing up on a dairy farm limited my opportunities because chores always came first. Because my mother was unable to provide this type of experience, I was grateful for the exposure to a variety of music and arts that the concerts and Mrs. Jones provided. Irene went out of her way to make me feel welcome in her home and with her family.

Irene was also a historian and a writer. She researched and compiled a book about the Pavillion community, titled Pavillion City, which I used when preparing these posts about the school. She preserved the community's history in her book.

Mrs. Jones was probably the first adult friend I had, and she was a good one. Sadly, I didn't have the opportunity to thank her for the positive role she played in my life.


  1. Positive role models are so important. As a parent I was grateful that there were people like your Mrs. Jones in my children's life.

    When I was a freshmen in high school in Berwick, Louisiana in 1974 we had a homecoming parade (we were also panthers). I went to two other high schools after that and they did not have parades and I never hear of them today. I guess it's a tradition that has faded away.

  2. What a special tribute to Mrs. Jones.
    You can rest assured she knew how you felt.

  3. But you just did and I bet she heard it!!!

    Positive role models for girls are a MUST then and now

  4. Oh Nancy, what a lovely post. It brings back good memories of our Homecoming events, which included the parade. I get a kick out of seeing mom on the go-cart with a ball cap worn backwards! And we had such fun at our sleep-overs! I was so lucky to have great girlfriends and a mom who let us have our parties!

    It's so nice to hear that mom was appreciated. She certainly did encourage being independent and nurturing one's talents and ambitions. She was a great role model.

  5. What a lovely tribute to a person who added a dimension to your life and who sounds like a lovely lady!! Thanks for sharing Nancy!

  6. I'm sure she knows, and probably knew at the time too. She sounds like a wonderful person. About the parades, I seem to remember a lot more parades in the 60's than in recent times. I guess they are too expensive now, but they sure were something back then.

  7. What a wonderful post!! It's amazing the impact people can have on our lives and we don't realize it until later in life!

  8. Nice post, Nancy! Mrs. Jones sounds like a special person; every girl should be so lucky to have someone like her as part of her life!

  9. This is really a nice post! I bet she knew deep down that she made an impact in not only your life but others.

  10. I think you just DID thank her. Spreading her story is a wonderful form of thanks. :-)

  11. Your Mrs Jones sound like a wonderful lady..a special friend. I like that she wrote about the history of your area..her voice lives on! :)

  12. The following comment came by email, so I'm posting it here.

    Nice post. I remember the Jones very well. They were really nice people and I loved to buy candy in their store. Nancy was in my class and was one of the nicest girls to be around. The picture in your post shows Jerry Glasgow who was also in my class. He seem to be one of the smartest in our class. The last time I talked to him he was living in Denver. Without the Jones - Pavillion would not be what it is now. Thanks for the good article. Robert Henry Crestview,Fl


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