Williamsburg Villager

Williamsburg Villager

The Month of Hearts and Flowers

Just as we emerge from the month of January which turned out to be VERY cold, February comes knocking on our doors. February has been known to be not only cold, but icy. I remember being iced out of school for two weeks my second year of teaching.  That was in Hamilton, Mo, the hometown of J. C. Penney. Soon after that, I was working for J. C. Hall at Hallmark Cards. Both men had middle names that started with “C”, and yes, that C stood for Cash. Take note, young couples, when naming your children.

February, as a winter month, does not give us too much to celebrate. There are the two birth dates of President Washington and Lincoln, but those are regulated to one three-day period where the sales are recognized more than the men whom we should be celebrating. But there is one shining holiday in February that saves that month’s reputation for only being cold and icy… Valentine’s Day. Every school child looks forward to Valentine’s Day. Remember how we decorated our boxes to receive those lovely cards. Even when we may have been given one of those cruel “put down” cards, it was still to be counted among the cards we received.

Valentine’s Day has grown in scope. Now, middle school children and high school students may be gifted at school with flowers and heart-shaped boxes of chocolate.

Florists will tell you that Valentine’s Day is one of the best days of their year. Candy shops will hand-dip thousands of strawberries and sell beautiful boxes filled with delicious treats making hearts light and hips heavier – but who cares… it’s Valentine’s Day.

Valentine’s Day has been placed smack-dab in the middle of what can be a cold and cruel month. It gives us pause to think of something nice to do for those we love and those who love us. Yes, cynics may say that it’s just a Hallmark Holiday, but they’d be wrong. It has been a tradition since the days of St. Valentine and carried on down through the centuries.

So, no matter what the weather, warm the hearts of your favorite people on Valentine’s Day. Have a happy one!

Things Heard ‘Round the Potbellied Stove

 Marlene’s celebrates the birthdays of its staff by having a small party for those who have birthdays in each month. We would love to have you join us if you’d like. If we run out of cupcakes, we always have ice cream. Because our workers are not all here on any given day, we will post the date of that month’s party on out front door at the beginning of each month.
 Pat Jones was featured on the front page of a brochure that goes out to alums of MU each month. Pat has gifted the university with 1.6 million dollars to be used for scholarships for those going into the field of Conservation. No wonder you are known as “the prairie god-mother.” “Good-on-ye,” Pat.
 We are proud to announce two more great-grand-children who, arrived recently for some Villagers. Carson Bradley Miller, 7 lbs., 13 ounces and 21 inches long was born to Bethany and Matthew Miller of St. Louis. Proud great-grand-parents are Bob and Janette Bradley. McKynlee Ann Bouldin was born on December 19, 2014. She weighed 8 lbs., and was 20 inches long. Those proud great-grand-parents are Rylan and Barbara Mann. (Barbara says that they now have 3 in the family on Dec. 19. Grandfather Joe and Cousin Paige.) Congratulations to all.
 The flu season has been hard on some villagers. Three different varieties put several folks out of commission for a while. Let’s hope that in February the flu bug packs up and leaves our vicinity entirely.
 Villager, Mary Masek has moved into her brand-new house. Congratulations, Mary, we know you will enjoy your new home because you got to plan it to suit your needs.
 We visited with old friends Luane and Larry Notte last month here at Marlene’s! Larry was principal at Williamsburg Elementary School while I taught there. Many of the Villagers will remember him.
 Remember that Lynda Alden has a wonderful gift shop here at Marlene’s Restaurant and Jan Gray has rooms at her Gray Ghost Trail Inn for travelers or overflow family or friends.
 Shirley Hopper, long time member of out Nine Mile Presbyterian Church has been missing from her pew. She is currently staying with family while awaiting a hip operation. We miss you, Shirley, both at church and here at the restaurant.

Happy Valentine’s Day from your friends Megan, JoAnn, Danielle, Debbie, Fiona, Kami, A.J., Scott, Joe, and Marlene.

New Museum Policy

We are proud to announce a new museum policy. When we first opened, ten years ago, we charged $2.50 to go through the museum. Later, we wanted the people who ate with us to go through at no charge. Word-of-mouth about both our food and the contents of the museum now make it possible to offer the museum at no charge to the public. Come in and enjoy the museum, which depicts Williamsburg and its surrounding area in the late 1890’s until the 1920’s free of charge. Thank you, restaurant patrons.

Our Mystery Patron of the Month

Our patron of the month will remain nameless. He appeared at my desk as I was eating lunch one Thursday in January. He was amazed that we had four White Eagle Gas Co. gas pump toppers in our display. He was an ardent collector of all things related to gas and was on his way to such an expo at the Lake of the Ozarks. His first words were, “Do you know how lucky you are?”

Now, I do know that I am lucky in some ways, but I had no idea what he meant. “Yes, Sir,” I said, waiting for him to clarify his meaning.

“You have four White Eagles in perfect condition. I thought I was fortunate, but I just have one,” he said.

When I explained to him that the store sold White Eagle gas when it opened in 1926, he knew that the rest of the story was that Mobil Oil Co. bought out White Eagle in 1937 making all things “White Eagle” very collectible now.

He was amazed that all four of our White Eagles were without blemish. Being made of milk glass they were vulnerable to hail, gun shots and young boys throwing rocks at them. We had quite a visit about the old gas tanks he had restored, and then, he was off as quickly as he had come. “After all,” he told me, “I’m 79 years old and I have to drive to the Lake yet.” Then he got away before I got his name, but I have a notion that he was one interesting person who could really have educated me on gas station memorabilia.

Joe’s Corner

















During this past fall season I worked on metal chairs. Now, we didn’t really need any more metal chairs as you can see when you look on the porch of this building… but I still had some put away and I was gifted with some that had unique shell-shaped backs. So I went to work painting chairs again. Two of the chairs I painted “MU” gold with black trim. Marlene said that they looked like the Fulton High School colors also. The light bulb came on in my head. Our oldest grandson had a birthday coming up soon… Now each of the two grandsons have their own Fulton Hornets chair complete with the logo of the Fulton hornet on the backs.

A week or so later I painted two chairs in MU gold and black and added the MU Tiger logo to their backs. They now sit at Lynda’s Shop’s front doors… an appropriate placing since her son, Mike, is MU’s athletic director.

Next, I worked on the three chairs that have the shell-shaped backs. You guessed it! It was easy to add the Shell Gas logo to those. They now sit among the gas station memorabilia in the back of the museum.

We don’t know when I’ll be in the mood to do chairs again, but I still have an ample supply. Come and sit awhile.


 Several buffalo were grazing on the prairie when a cowboy rode up. Looking at
the animals, he said disgustingly, “You are the ugliest buffaloes I have ever seen. Your fur is matted, you have humps on your backs, and you’re slobbering all over the place.” The cowboy turned and rode off, and one buffalo said to another, “I think I just heard a discouraging word!”
 On the way to preschool, the doctor let his daughter look at his stethoscope. His
little daughter picked it up and began playing with it. This thrilled the father as he thought, “Perhaps one day she will follow in my footsteps and become a doctor.” But then he heard her as she spoke into the instrument, “Welcome to McDonald’s. May I take your order?”
 The interviewer examined the job application, then turned to the prospective
employee. “I see you have put down ASAP for the date you are available to start. However, I see you have written AMAP for required salary. I don’t believe I know what that means.” The applicant replied, “As Much As Possible.”
 “I think I deserve a raise,” the young man said to his boss. “You know there are
three other companies after me.” “Is that right,” asked the manager? “What other companies are after you?” the young man said, “The electric company, the phone company, and the gas company!”
 An employee went to his supervisor. “Boss,” he said, “We’re doing some heavy
House cleaning at home tomorrow, and my wife asked me to help with the attic and garage, moving the hauling stuff.” “We’re shorthanded,” the boss replied. “I can’t give you the day off.” “Thank you,” said the employee. “I knew I could count on you!”
 The manager was reviewing a potential employee’s application and notes that the
fellow has never worked in retail before. “For a man with no experience,” he says, “You are certainly asking for a high wage.” “Well, sir,” the applicant replies, “the work is much more difficult when you don’t know what you’re doing.”


The Williamsburg Villager is provided by Crane’s Museum & Shoppes. Marlene Crane is our on location reporter and resident artist. Please submit any announcements to Marlene by the 20th of each month to insure publication.

Annual Subscriptions available for a $12 donation to Crane’s Museum



10665 OLD HWY 40

Crane’s Museum is a Regional History Museum located in
Williamsburg, MO. We invite visitors of all ages to enjoy
a step back in time. Enjoy breakfast, lunch or dinner in
Marlene’s Restaurant, shop for gifts at Town House Treasures get ready for winter and spring with Crane’s Country Store Clearance and Closeout.



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