Queen City Of The Sand Flats
Boyd and Yvonne Howard moved to Grapeland from Tilden, Nebraska with their family in January of 1968.
Boyd and Yvonne Howard moved to Grapeland from Tilden, Nebraska with their family in January of 1968. They had five children, Timothy (13), Devora (11), Ferran (10), David (2) and Tracey (4 months). Boyd and Yvonne Lichty Howard both graduated from high school in Brunswick, Nebraska in May of 1951. Boyd started farming upon graduation. Yvonne attended Wayne State Teachers College and taught in a one room rural school for two years. On March 11, 1953, they were married in Brunswick during a raging blizzard. They continued to farm in Antelope Co. for the next 15 years. Both were very active in trying to keep the rural schools and to maintain local control of their children's education.
To this day, Nebraska has the most rural schools in the United States. In November of 1965 after losing a home to fire and several bad years of crops, Boyd went to work for Vulcraft in the Norfolk, Nebraska division while continuing to farm. Yvonne and the three oldest children tended to most of the farming and daily livestock chores from November 1965 until December of 1967. In the fall of 1967, Vulcraft finalized the plans to build a new plant in Grapeland, Texas. Boyd was asked to move to Grapeland and manage the traffic department. This made it easier to make the decision they faced, to continue working for Vulcraft and putting all the money into farming or to quit farming and work for Vulcraft. It wasn't easy to leave the farm way of life, family and friends, but the opportunity of moving over 860 miles south, the making of new friends and a regular pay check was an experience they all looked forward to. One of the hardest adjustments to make was for Tim, Devora and Ferron. While on the farm they milked 8-10 cows every morning and night along with other farm chores and then in good weather, walked three miles one way to school. Living in town left them with few responsibilities and lots of time on their hands. They soon found jobs to help keep them occupied. Their lives have been busy ones since moving to Grapeland. They joined the First United Methodist Church and have remained active with church activities. Boyd has kept busy with work at the plant for the 18 1/2 years before retiring in June of 1986. He has served on the Grapeland School Board and the First United Methodist Church Board. He likes to garden, travel and help others. Yvonne was kept occupied with the raising of five children, along with serving as P.T.O. president, active with community council, serving on the church board, past president and member of the Love Circle of the U.M.W., past president and member of the Garden Club, and just working for the betterment of the community. Timothy graduated from Grapeland High School in 1972. In March 1975 he married Penny Reed. They are the parents of two children, Timothy Jr. and Melissa. They live in Grapeland and he works for S.A. Maxwell and Co. Penny is a full time student at Anderson Center. Devora graduated from Grapeland High School in 1974. In August of 1972 she married James Goodnight. They are the parents of one daughter, Angela. They also live in Grapeland. James works at Vulcraft and Devora works in the accounting department of Houston County Nursing Home and is going to college at night. Ferron graduated from Grapeland High School in 1976. He married Shelley Choote in August of 1977. They are the parents of two daughters, Tiffany and Melanie. They live in Buffalo, Texas. Ferran works for A.L. Helmcamp. Shelley is a nurse for Dr, Freeman and also works in surgery in the Buffalo hospital. David graduated in 1984. He married Stacy Frederick in February 1986. They are the parents of one daughter, Eva Christine. David works part-time for Don Ebbert and is a student at T.S.T.I. in Waco.Tracy graduated in 1985. She is in her second year at Stephen F. Austin State University, majoring in accounting. Now that Boyd has retired, he and Yvonne plan to travel and enjoy life.