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Watterson, Ringgold County, Iowa

During the beginning of the 1900's, Watterson was known as Poyneer. The little village, located eight miles south of Mount Ayr in Lotts Creek Township. The post office was closed in October of 1894 with the mail delivered to Ringgold City. Poyneer's post office was re-established in February of 1895. William A. TODD of Mount Ayr was assigned the task of re-naming the re-opened post office. Mr. TODD, who had invited politican Henry WATTERSON to deliver a lecture at Mount Ayr's opera house, named the post office WATTERSON in his honor.

Local children in grades 1 through 8 attended Oak Ridge School No. 5, located one mile southeast of town. Evelyn JAMES was the last to teach at Oak Ridge School.

Businesses in Watterson included the store run by Vern HACKER and the GATES Brothers' garage, two used furniture stores owned and operated by Hazel DAVIS and Vera HACKER, a blacksmith shop at one time. Residents included Vern and Ida SHIELDS, Ham and Mandy BUTLER, Charlie DYER, O. B. and Hazel DAVIS, Frank LUCAS, P. I. DENNIS, Jack SCOTT, Vern GUESS, and Vern and Vera HACKER.

The central hub of activity at Watterson has always been the general store, providing dry goods, ice, and groceries to the locals. The ice house stood behind the store and at least one gasoline pump stood at the store.

Those who ran the Watterson Store include Charles and Pearl MICKAEL, M. W. SHAFFER, A. M. SACKETT, Thomas HARDEN, Bill COLE, Elmer MOTSINGER, a Mr. WILSON, Glen CALDWELL, O. B. and Hazel DAVIS, and Vern and Vera HACKER who were the last owners. Elmer DeBOLT, Watterson's last resident, moved away sometime around the year 2001.

Mount Ayr Record News
Mount Ayr, Ringgold County, Iowa
Thursday, May 23, 2002

County Columns ~ Maloy
By Liz Lynch

Sunday afternoon Bob and Liz took flowers to Lotts Grove Cemetery south of the Watterson Quarry in Missouri. On the return they turned east on the first Iowa road and droze past Liz's childhood home sites. It was sad because the area where the house stood was so full of box elder trees you could not have walked through. A new trailer home and lawn had been set up across the road in the timber clearing. They went on the 2.5 mile route she walked to Ringgold school and up the road north to the Ringgold Cemetery. It and the one south of Watterson had been mowed up and looked great. They back tracked to the main road and went east and north toward Caledonia. They saw the COULSON brother's beautiful herd of Charolais cattle. These were on the pasture land where Ada ROGERS grew up. Part of the road traveled is on the Dragoon Trace.

The closest church was Fry Chapel, located approximately one mile north of town.


Photographs by Sharon R. Becker, March of 2010

Mount Ayr Record-News, Mount Ayr, Ringgold County, Iowa. January 13, 2005.

AVITT, Mike. Pages and Pictures from the Past . . . Ringgold County, Iowa: 1885-2005 p. 13. Paragon Publications, Inc. Mount Ayr, Iowa. 2009.


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