A great year for the McDonald County Historical Society culminated last Sunday with a fun Christmas party celebrating the progress made.

A great year for the McDonald County Historical Society culminated last Sunday with a fun Christmas party celebrating the progress made.

Restoration of the grand old courthouse on the square will continue, keeping in mind the grand opening as our new museum to be Memorial Weekend 2013. Dreams continue for the elevator – a major project. The museum at 302 Harmon is closed now until spring, but 2013 calendars are still available at the Mustang Pharmacy in Anderson and at City Hall in Pineville, only $8 each – great Christmas presents as they depict churches in McDonald County. The Family Origins shelves are available for just $250, if you would like for your family to be a part of this collection of family histories. If you would like to be a part of this project or are interested in adopting a room (going fast now) go to info@mcdonaldcohistory.org or just to check out the progress check out www.mcdonaldcohistory.org.

Sixteen days left to prepare for Christmas Day.

Are you from McDonald County? Do you have sweet memories of attending school or residing somewhere in the 500 square miles – 20,000 residents. Did you lounge beside the creeks and rivers, canoe from creek to river.  A lot of us can still remember (doesn’t seem that long ago) that we sat in the big dining room at Ginger Blue, watching a harvest moon come over the trees, boats loaded with campers, or relaxing in a canoe gliding softly down the Big Elk.

Not really visible, in the miles of timber and by-ways where Doug Hall had black powder retreats, welcoming those who like to remember when men survived by their wits and brawn and how well they kept their firearms oiled.

The famous singing Brumleys from the Powell area who have a theatre in Branson and the retreat inhabited by Hank Williams Jr., are not visible either but they are there. Interesting names like Cyclone, Boske Dell, Shadow Lake, Thieves Hollow, Camp Tilden, Crag’O Lea, Bluff Dwellers cave as well as Truitt’s Cave which was written up in Ripley’s Believe It or Not.

You can say that — believe it or not — about most of McDonald County, the startled deer at the rivers’ edge, squirrels, chipmunk, opossum, raccoon fox and coyote all can be seen in the edge of town, believe it or not! Bird watchers will enjoy the great blue heron, the scarlet cardinal, indigo budgie, blue jays and the whippoorwill, hawk and American Bald Eagle as well as the lonesome sound of the turtledove and night owls.

As you might presume correctly, I have a love of this unique and, yes, sometimes challenging county. This time of year as the leaves fall, leaving bare trees, you will have a completely different scene to enjoy than in the spring.
I hasten to congratulate you if you are lucky enough to reside in this area, if you live elsewhere and possess memories of bygone days in “Mac” County, do cherish those memories and think about sharing them with the McDonald County Historical Society, P.O. Box 572, Pineville, Mo., 64856. We’d love to hear from you.

Alberta Anders writes a weekly column for the Daily News.