"In the above picture the City of Littlefield was being opened for settlement in July 1913. That day a huge barbecue was held for the townsite opening."
At The Museum……
August 6, 2006
(This week’s articles are taken from two sources: the publication put together for Littlefield’s Golden Anniversary in 1963, [I couldn’t find a specific credit, but strongly suspect that "Pop" (Allen) and Betty Hodges had a great deal to do with it!], and information found in a book written by Bettye Kate Smith for her family’s use.)
Littlefield residents didn’t have many ways to celebrate, so they took full advantage when the opportunity arose. According to Bettye Kate Smith, while speaking of the Smith Hotel, "The dining room contained one long table that ran the length of the room. The table was made in sections, sitting on a series of saw-horse-type stands, so the table could be lifted and stored against the wall, when the family wanted to use the large room for parties. Plain wooden chairs were used during meals. These could be easily put in the wide hall outside the room when they weren’t needed."
She goes on to say, "Littlefield was a ‘Saturday’ town from the beginning. Everyone came in on that day, to do shopping, trading of eggs, butter, poultry or whatever they had to barter. Some came in just to visit. At first, most of the people coming to town were cowboys and ranchers, but it wasn’t long before farmers and trades people gathered on that day of the week. There were no places for entertainment, such as movies or saloons. (Many years later, in the mid 1930’s, Littlefield was "wet" for a very short time, but not during the early days.) The Smith Hotel was a Mecca for many of these people.
"On Saturday nights, the hotel was full of people who gathered at the hotel to socialize. It was a center of entertainment for everyone, not just family and borders. Everyone was welcomed.
"Smaller children were bedded down on pallets and blankets, while the adults and teenagers cleared the tables and chairs from the dining room. If the crowd was in luck, there would be a boarder in residence who played the fiddle, guitar, or banjo. If not, Bob Smith played his harmonica, as the only music for the square dancers and round dancers, never missing a note or a step, as he played while dancing at the same time. (Mr. Bob, as he was called in later years, often said, ‘It didn’t matter what sort of clothes you wore to these gatherings, as long as the man had a clean white handkerchief to put over his right hand, so his hand wouldn’t perspire on the ladies’ dresses.’) Bob also played the banjo and other instruments, but preferred to play the harmonica, because he could dance and play at the same time, but had to use both hands on other musical instruments."