NOTE: This information is being written about George and Garnette by their only grandchild (David George Stuart), it is being compiled from past memory, and the information found on the backs of some old photos. Click on the photo number if you wish to view the picture.
George Ray Dixon was born 12 July 1890 at Yates City, Knox County, Illinois. He was the sixth child of John Wesley Dixon Jr. and Lulu Vernice Wood. His brothers and sister were: Ralph C. Dixon, Edna Merle Dixon, Clarence W. Dixon, Frank Jay Dixon, and William Lynn Dixon.
Garnette Lorraine Woolam was born 2 December 1892 at Galesburg, Knox County, Illinois. She was the fourth child of five children of Curtis Woolam and Carrie Davis. Her brothers and sister were: Nelle Newton (Carrie Davis was married to a Mr. Newton before Curtis Woolam), Clyde Oria Woolam, Hugh E. Woolam, and George Eno Woolam. No information is known about George or Garnette as children. Photo 1 shows George at about 20 years of age as a baker. In the next photo 2 he is the one on the left in front of Nero Bakery, I have no idea who the others are in the picture. On the back of picture number 3, it says, "Where we first went housekeeping Bowen, Ill. May 1, 1912, Where Marcel was born April 23, 1913." I have a copy of George and Garnette's marriage license, he was 21 and she was 20 when they were married on May 1, 1912. Photo number 4 shows a house with Garnette on the front porch, on the back it states "our house in Yates City July 23, 1915." Pictures 5 and 6 show George and Garnette next to the same house and these are dated "January 22, 1916." It must have been a very mild winter because the grass look very much alive and they have no coats on! Next we can take a look into the house with picture number 7. On the back is written "Feb 13, 1916, Where mama, Marcal, and daddy spend many happy hours". I bet that was George's leather rocker on the left! Looks like George is still baking in photo number 8, he and Marcel are standing next to a wood pile, on the back is "April 2, 1916, Daddys little helper."
Joyce Caroline Dixon was born November 5, 1916, and picture number 9 shows Marcel and Joyce in a wooden rocker (I still have this rocker and have restored it to like new condition) on the back of the photo is "May 13, 1917, little brother and sister." "July 25, 1917, Marcel and Joyce and their dad" is the information found on the back of photo number 10, they are still in the same house in Yates City. Picture number 11 shows George, Garnette, Marcel, and Joyce all dressed up in winter clothing and Sunday 'best.' There is no date or information, but picture number 12 is dated May 23, 1923, and Marcel and Joyce appear to be about the same age as in the previous picture.
Number 12 shows Nelle Childers, Garnette, Alex Childers along with Marcel and Joyce. Nelle was Garnette's sister, and I bet Marcel was a "handful !!" Numbers 13 and 14 show the total family on September 1, 1923. Picture number 15 jumps to April 16, 1927, Joyce and Marcel are sure growing up!
Picture number 16 is of George's new home in Wichita Kansas at 401 N. Pershing. The following is from the Wichita Eagle newspaper, it ran a picture of the house and the following stories.
One of Wichita's most modernly equipped and most beautiful homes is that of George R. Dixon, local Brunswick sales representative, at Pershing avenue and Third street. From its vari-colored tile roof to its daintily appointed bathroom, the structure is a material realization of the long-sought 'Dream House.'
The first glimpse one gets of the Dixon home is that of many colored lights twinkling from the tiled roof. As it glitters there above the well kept-lawn, it resembles some valuable jewel, resting on a piece of green velvet. Dixon has taken a great interest in his home and took an active part in planning every detail of its construction. The exterior is of brick and hammered brass fixtures give it the needed touch to accentuate its beautiful simplicity.
The living room is large but 'homey' and is well lighted. Dixon pointed out that there are more than 70 electrical receptacles in the structure. The dining room and sun room are located in the south-central portion of the house. These rooms are connected by a large open doorway. Two well-finished bedrooms on the first floor are separated by a tiled bathroom. The color scheme in this marvelous room is orchid and peach, carried out in both the tile and the wallpaper. The kitchen is thoroughly up to the minute. With a bright green the predominant color, this work room of Mrs. Dixon's is one which makes housework a joy, she avers. In the rear of the house, connecting with it, is a large two car garage. Over the garage, the large ten window sleeping porch has been constructed. Four beds are a part of this room's furnishings and the two built in vanities, with their plate glass mirrors, add a distinctive touch.
All of the woodwork in the 'Dream House' is of quarter-sawed oak. The large mantel in the living room is built of brick greatly resembling Joseph's well-known coat, in that it, too, has many colors. Each brick was selected by Mr. Dixon. In the basement, which housed the automatic heating and water systems, a laundry room, gymnasium and playroom have been built. Mr. Dixon's great pride is in his fish pond, located in the rear of the home. It is built in a banana shape and a model bridge crosses it. The Wichita man is now constructing a stone fountain which will be placed at one end of the pond.
It might have stepped right out of a motion picture or been transplanted from one of those quaint Japanese gardens from San Francisco, the garden at the home of George Dixon at 401 N. Pershing. It is so unique in Wichita that many persons stop and ask if they may inspect and admire it more closely.
The garden is in keeping with the red and brown brick house with its tile roof to match. There are several cunning brown dwarf statuets--perky red caps on their heads; there is a cute Japanese bridge over a lily pond in which goldfish swim, made from an original design of Marcel, 16-year-old son of the Dixon's, and there is a wall, an archway and a fascinating gate post with a beacon light at night. This garden is the pride of the entire family for even the 12-year-old daughter has had her share in its building. Many bright colored stones have been used in the construction of walls and tower and these were selected with care by Mr. Dixon, who is a traveling salesman, and brought back in his car from Missouri.
THE GEORGE R. DIXON
401 N. PERSHING, WICHITA, KANSAS
While talking about beautiful homes, we will tell you about the George R. Dixon home at 401 North Pershing. Mr. and Mrs. Dixon have worked for many years to build their ideal home, and this is certainly that. The house is built on a corner lot and is 48 feet by 25 feet. With a large porch, and 3 arch lights, and as you step in the house you are greeted with 2 large Japanese lanterns that are designed by Mr. Dixon, a brick mantle with 800 hand-picked brick, beautiful rugs, and furniture, then to the guest bedroom with quarter sawed oak flooring and all the doors throughout are special made with it quarter sawed oak. The bedroom upstairs is more of a very large sleeping porch, will accommodate 4 beds, and the vanities are built right into the wall, and the floors and doors upstairs even to the little attic are built with the same care that the rest of the house is, incidentally the garage is built into the house, and finished throughout the same. The kitchen, dining room. and breakfast are finished with cut glass lighting fixtures, there are 65 electrical outlets in the house, which assures you of any electrical device that you might want. The bathroom fixtures are of vitreous china, and was furnished by the Charles McLaughlin Plumbing Co. 835 South St. Francis: the tile and trimming for the bath are of peach-bloom and orchid, and was set and furnished by the J.H. John Tile and Mantle Co., 311 West Douglas.
The basement is finished off so it looks like an extra home. There is a 15 inch I beam that is painted and runs clear through the center of the house, which gives it double reinforced strength, with the added strength and beauty of the tile roofing, which was all picked out by Mr. Dixon, and The American Cornice Works Co., furnished the tile roof and the sheet metal work throughout. The J.H. Turner Co. furnished all the stucco work and makes the oriental stucco trimming. Charles McLaughlin furnished the American Radiator also, Marshall Lumber Co., 1945 North Lawrence furnished all the lumber doors, etc., for the Dixon home. W.C. Gable & Son were the builders of this home and the DeVoe Reynolds Co., Inc., furnished all the paint. The Wichita Metal Weatherstrip Co., 111 West Second furnished all weatherstripping.
Now we will glimpse at the back yard, a lighthouse with 3 lights to tell you where the Dixon home is at night, and a stone built fish pond, with 150 live fish, and 3 dwarf dummy men to greet you, even the rock were hand picked and brought in the rear end of the car by Mr. Dixon, all the way from Joplin. The whole lot is 60 feet by 143 feet and one has to see it, to know which spot is the prettiest and the most comfy, and then you don't know. The Dixons' have open house at all times.
From these newspaper accounts, the house was really grand. The house still looks good today, but it is kind of overgrown and looks to big for the lot.
Picture number 17 shows George and Joyce next to the side of the house, no date but probably around 1930.
Photo number 18 was taken in 1935, another photo that I have is a front view of the car and the tag has that date on it. The house is at 3324 East Pine in Wichita. From family history, I know that George took a beating in the marked crash of 1929 and must have had to sell the 'Dream House' and move the family to East Pine. This house is gone now and the entire block is a parking lot for a medical building. Picture number 19 shows George, Garnette, Joyce, and Marcel on the back it says "All the Dixons Tulsa, Oklahoma, Nov. 1937." Joyce was married on November 21, 1937, in Tulsa, this probably was taken just a few days before the wedding.
George and Garnette were divorced on August 31, 1945. A copy of the divorce records is in the file under id. # 10. The records show that George was to pay Garnette the sum of $9000 dollars at the rate of $50 a month until the total amount had been paid, about 18 years. She would be living in Wichita at 1841 S. Waco. These divorce records were located in the Sedgwick County courthouse on the 11th floor, in the civil cases, volume 19 page 82 case number A-15340.
The next picture, number 20 is of George and his second wife Margaret Duffy. They were married in December 1945. I was born in 1940 and can remember going to their apartment in Kansas City, Mo. It was located just across the street from a very nice park and their apartment was on the third floor and looked out over this park facing east.
George was running the George R. Dixon Billiard Supply on Main street in Kansas City, Mo. Picture number 21 and 22 show two different stores. In number 21 George, Joyce, Lynn Dixon one of George's brother and his wife, Florence are present. In picture number 22 Joyce and her brother, Marcel (everyone called him Bub) are showed, no dates on either picture.
Garnette and an unknown woman are shown in picture number 23, the date the on the back is Feb 1941. This indicated that Garnette was in Wichita and living at 1841 South Waco, where she lived until her death. George and Garnette were separated for several years before the divorce was final, Garnette was living in Wichita and George was living in Tulsa. I remember spending many nights with my grandmother when mom and dad would go out for the evening. She had a nice big house and she was a great cook! The front porch was all screened in, and after supper she and I would set out on the front porch. I remember she would be crocheting an edge on wash cloths or kitchen towels, and I would be playing with toys that were kept there for me (very good times!). I remember as a young child not really understanding why my grandmother lived in Wichita and we would see her almost every day, and my grandfather living in Kansas City with Margaret. We would go there once or twice a year, it was always a lot of fun. When we would go, granddad and Margaret would always take us to neat places and good places to eat. Going to see Bub and his wife Ruth was always fun. Bub always had the best of everything and was the first to have the newest things out. I remember going to his house around 1948-49 and he had a TV (boy what fun that was, I was 8 or 9). George built a new house in Raytown Mo., just south of Kansas City at 8801 East 63rd Street in 1952. Picture number 24 & 25 shows George and the house in December 1952. In June of 1953, mom, dad and I left for our summer trip to see George and Margaret. We arrived at their new home around noon on June 7, 1953. I remember as we pulled into the driveway of the house someone (I don't remember who) came out of the house and told my mother that he needed to talk with her first. She and my dad stepped out of the car and told me to stay in the car. They talked for a minute and then mother started to cry, and then she and dad went into the house. I found out in a little while that granddad had died several hours earlier and they knew that we were on the way up from Wichita for a visit. I don't really remember much after that except that we all attended a very big funeral at First Congregational Church on June 10, 1953, at 2 pm.
1953, Kansas City Star
Mr. George R. Dixon
DIXON---George Ray Dixon, 63 of 8801 East Sixty-third, Jackson County, died unexpectedly at the home yesterday afternoon shortly after he was released from St. Luke's hospital, where he had been a patient two weeks. He apparently suffered a stroke. Mr. Dixon was born in Yates City, Ill., and was a resident of Tulsa and Wichita before moving here eight years ago. He owned the George R. Dixon Billiard Supply company, 3034 Main. He was a member of a Masonic lodge in Wichita and of the Westminster Congregational church. Surviving are his wife, Mrs. Margaret S. Dixon of the home; a daughter, Mrs. A.S. Stuart, Wichita; a son Marcel "Bub" Dixon 8903 Rose Lane, Jackson County, and three brothers, Ralph Dixon, Galesburg, Ill.; Frank Dixon, Peoria, Ill., and William Lynn Dixon, Scottsdale, Ariz. He will be buried at Mount Moriah Cemetery in Kansas City, Mo.
After the funeral, we returned to Wichita, and I started spending the summer like any thirteen year would. I knew that my grandmother had been in and out of the hospital several times over the past year, and I was not ready for another funeral. Picture number 26 shows Garnette in late 1952 or early 1953. Just one month and 3 days after George had died, Garnette passed away August 10, 1953. She still had her house at 1841 S. Waco, but the past few weeks she had been staying with us at our home at 1952 S. Emporia.
1953, Wichita Eagle
Mrs. Garnette L. Dixon
Funeral services for Mrs. Garnette L. Dixon 60, of 1841 South Waco, who died Saturday in a local hospital, will be held Wednesday at 2 pm., in the Downing Mortuary Chapel. Mrs. Dixon was born December 2, 1892, in Galesburg, Ill. She came to Wichita in 1924 and has resided here continuously since that time. She was a member of the First Baptist Church. Survivors include one daughter, Mrs. Joyce C. Stuart, 1952 South Emporia; one son, M.G. Dixon of Kansas City, Mo.; a sister, Mrs. A.M. Childers of Galesburg, Ill., and a brother, Hugh Woolam of Galesburg.
Dr. F.B. Thorn will officiate at the last rites. Burial will be in White Chapel Memorial Gardens in Wichita, Kansas