Elmer Cole was my father-in-law. I know he was in McCurtain by 1918 at least, since he married Kitty Attebury Rose, widow with one son, in that year. She ran a boarding house and was a telephone operator at that time. I have one delightful story from Elmer himself about a Halloween that he spent in Haskell. I knew him as a gentle giant, because although he was 6 feet 2 inches tall, he delighted in his young grandchildren to the point that he would enter into their imaginary worlds which are common for two year olds. I will tell it because it is almost another Halloween now. One Halloween, Elmer Cole was watching the town for tricks that young people were known to perform on this beloved holiday evening. He found a group of young men who had taken the outhouse from behind some note able persons house that night. Perhaps it was the parsons, I am not certain. They took the outhouse to the church which had a steeple. Then with heavy work and a system of ropes, the outhouse was lifted to the ridge of the church where it was wedged somehow to keep it from falling off. While Elmer watched in silence during their heavy work, he said not a word and hid. Then he climbed into the bed of the wagon which they had used and which he knew they would be coming back to. As they climbed into the wagon, seat or otherwise, Constable Elmer Cole rose quietly up from the bed of the wagon (I can imagine that these young men thought a ghost was accosting them) and said, "All right, boys, now let's take it down and take it back to it intended place." If only our lawmen of today had his kind of approach. He was a wonderful father-in-law.
Another offering is that the Jim Cole that you list as another lawman there was ex U S. Deputy Marshal James R. Cole, who was Elmer's father. The same James R. Cole, who was with U. S. Deputy Marshal Frank Dalton, when Dalton was killed. Further help with their dates. James R. Cole no longer served as a Deputy Marshal by about 1909. However, he had a large family, and since he was not able to do much work by 1909, Elmer helped his father with his second family. Elmer was born 27 June 1881 in Sebastian Co., Ark. His father was born in Missouri.
Submitted by: Wanda Cole
Date submitted: 23 October, 1999
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