Washington County, Illinois

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A Casualty of Change
By : Jefferey McKenzie
By : Wilbert "Bucky" McCoy


  T U C K E R V I L L E

By : Wilbert "Bucky" McCoy

      About a mile and a half west of Ashley Ill. at the inersection of 15 and 51 was Tuckerville Illinois.
Mainly because it was a setttlement of Tuckers.
      Around 1930 some men from Marion, Illinois and the area bought busses and started the Egyption Bus Company. It operated for several years and sold to Grey Hound. It finally folded and until recently there were stills signs of it, but to the naked eye this day if you were familiar with the area you can pick out spots you recognize.
      At one time their was a wye in the road at the intersection and a tavern was in the center, but to the north of the intersection and a bit to the west was The Pyramid Bus Station.
      Tuckerville was once listed on road maps. It was a very busy place.
The business structures was two stories high with sleeping rooms and a full time cafe below. The garage was about twenty feet north of the main building.
      I can still rmember a few that worked that are still alive today.
Some of which is Clyde Wilcox residing in Arizona, Emory Martin of Centralia, Bucky McCoy of Ashley, Myrle McKenzie of Arkansas and a few other that slips my 88 year old mind.
The bus company furnished about eighty jobs..
Todays date is January 1 2007 and most of this is from my memory; so allow for some minor errors.



A Casualty of Change

By : Jefferey McKenzie

      When I was a young boy, our family vacations were usually in southern Illinois, near Ashley. My grandparents lived directly accross the intersection of highways 51 and 15. Farmland, rich in oil production, grew beautiful straight rows of corn reaching to the horizon. I loved summers that we spent there. Each year my brother, sister, and I walked along the L & N Railroad tracks and would fill our pockets with seashells from the gravel. We played in the empty buildings and on the concrete slabs; obviously, these were remmants of something much more than we had realized. As i reminisce the past, I want to know more about this little town and why it's non-existent.
      Similar to television's Waltons series, Tuckerville was this little town that existed during the 1920s and through the WWII era. While in pursuit of a dream and struggling to survive The Depression, Mom's family started this little community. Since my parents were childhood classmates at the old Liberty School, they should be a great source for this scarce information. Dad found the family tree and some related picture albums. A tinge of excitement surfaced as they began to recall the past.
      At the turn of the century, my great-grandparents raised a large family consisting of seven boys and two girls. Sometime after WWI, Grandpa and his brothers built the Tucker Garage and Restaurant, eight cabins, a public washhouse, and restrooms -- the ones with two seats and half-moon windows. Grandma always kept fresh linens and homemade soap neatly organized and laid out for guests who used the washhouse. During the summer, the children would bathe there. they enjoyed the hot water. The families of Vearne, Fred, and Cecil lived behind the garage in identical houses. After the Greyhound Bus Line moved to town, Tuckerville became a familiar pit stop for travelers. The restaurant, clean cabins, and complete auto service.
      As a young teen, my dad delivered ice, coal, and painted signs throughout the area. Later, he worked for the Greyhound Bus Line where he was attracted to a cute little waitress -- my mother. they married, and soon my sister was born into the generation that became baby-boomers.
      The Tucker Brothers Garage remained in business throughout WWII. they sold new Case Tactors and offered means of employment. Post-war circumstances changed the region. Better jobs, better roads, and a different way of life enticed people to move away. While Uncle Cecil moved to Indiana, Uncle Fred resumed growing corn and soybeans. Vearne, my grandpa, scratched his leg and eventually had to have it removed. He and Grandma spent many more years fishing and gardening. V. D. Tucker was a great violinist and a wonderful grandfather. He loved to draw and would play music for anyone who would listen.
      If you ever travel through Illinois, there is a small intersection where Route 51 meets Route 15. Beautiful, rich farmlandand pristine homes grace the scenery. Although population and city limit signs are gone forever, you will be in Tuckerville, Illinois, a town that once flourished, and served the Mid-West for many years.



2007-2008     Wayne Hinton

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