Audio Tour Stop 1

In 1928 William F. Childers and family came north from Cabool, Missouri in southern Texas County to practice their craft of basketmaking along the new road. The road was unpaved and the depressed economy was already being felt in the Ozarks, but traffic was brisk on the newly designated Route 66.


The Childer's log home is visible in the left background of the image. The workshop, Artful Woodwork, stands very close to the road. It didn't take long for the Ozarkers to understand that the city folks were coming as much to see the hillbillies as to buy the crafts, thus the tagline "Made by Ozark Hillbillies" on the craft shop's sign.
Henry Jasper, W. F. Childers' son, stands next to a display that shows the wide variety of baskets made at the Artful Woodwork - made by hillbillies.

The businesses along the original gravel road through Basketville and Hooker were located on the shoulder, or what there was of one on the old road. Table and racks were set up alongside the road. They were practically drive-through shops. Here Mr. Childers poses with two customers buying baskets.


These images courtesy of the Western Historical Manuscript Collection, Elbert Childers Collection.

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