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Newton Warren Bransom

Newton Warren Bransom, 93, of Burleson, Tex., died July 27, 2004 in Fort Worth.

He was the retired owner of Warrens Department Store in Coldwater.

Born March 14, 1911, in Burleson he was the fourth son of James Allen and Mary "Mollie" Jenkins Bransom. He married Thelma Mozelle Carter Nov. 1, 1931. He attended school at Reece Prairie, and Burleson High School, where he was valedictorian of the class of 19_2. After graduation he took a business course at Joshua High School and was also valedictorian there.

He was a 32nd Degree Mason, an active member of the Presbyterian Church where he served as an elder, and was a volunteer for Meals on Wheels, American Red Cross, and other benevolent associations. He enjoyed sail boating, hunting photography, and was a member of a gun club where he enjoyed target shooting.

He worked at Pierce Dry Goods in Burleson and Waxahachie, Tex., then worked for J. C. Penney Co. in Tucumcari, New Mex., and as a manager in Coldwater. He opened Warrens Department Store in 1955 after J. C. Penney closed its store. He kept and operated his store until 1975 when he retired.

In Coldwater, he was a city councilman for 14 years, then mayor for 17. He was project director of the building of Lake Coldwater. He was also a volunteer fireman, a probate judge, and a deputy sheriff. He participated in the Great American Trail Ride at Dodge City, when he was 85.

He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife of 62 years, Thelma Mozelle Carter Bransom in 1995; five brothers, James GG Bransom, Fayette Bransom, Benjamin H. Bransom, Laton Bransom, Leroy Bransom; and one sister, Oma May (Bransom) Henderson.

He is survived by his daughters, Mary Patricia Nanninga and husband, John of Burnsville, Minn., Sandra Kathleen Johnson of Burleson, Dorothy Jean Winward and husband Michael of Wichita; six grandchildren; and seven great grandchildren.

Funeral will be 2 p.m. at Mountain Valley Funeral Home Chapel in Burleson. Visitation will be Thursday from 6-8 p.m. Burial will be at Prairie Springs Cemetery in Burleson.

Memorials can be made to the Prairie Springs Cemetery Association in Burleson.

The following letter by Newton Warren Bransom is from the
Coldwater Centennial Notebook, 1884 - 1894


This fall, 40 years ago, we arrived in Coldwater to take charge of the local J.C. Penney Store. For 11 years, I was the manager. The store was closed in 1955. We immediately opened our own store under the trade name of Warren’s. We sold out in 1975.

We did not leave Coldwater when the Penney Store was closed, because we felt then and still do that Coldwater was one of the best places in the world to raise a family.

The community has been good to us. Through hard work by Mozelle and our girls, Pat, Sandy and Dorothy, we prospered in a small way in our chosen field of endeavor. In return, we hope that we have been of some service to the community.

There are a few ‘bouquets’ that I would like to hand out at this time. To Myrtle Clinesmith for her counsel and advice over the almost 40 years that I have known her. In my opinion she is one in a million.

To Justice Harold S. Herd, for without his advice and guidance, Coldwater Lake and park might not have been a reality.

To Garth W. Mcmillen who was always ready and willing to serve and act in the best interest of the community and has been an inspiration to me. He once chartered a plane to bring me back from Texas to help settle a problem that occurred during the construction of the concrete spillway. (Garth was Acting Contract Officer during my absence.) He was available to go with me on many trips during the preparation of the Architect’s plans for the Faye Carthrae Memorial Library Building. Garth was also available to go with me to Topeka to get a law passed so the Library would be able to make a tax levy to have funds to operate with the nest year. He was instrumental in the promotion and development of the Prairie Plaza Apartments. I truly miss him.

Our Thanks:

To Ralph Hoofer, President of the Council: he was always available to preside at council meeting during my absences and also sign checks and papers when I was away. Also for ‘taking care’ of the city pool and park.

To Karel Pavlik, Senior Member of the council and John Booth who assumed the responsibility of the installation of the electrical work of the Recreation Area around the lake. We were in a bind because the work had to be done by a certain time to qualify for matching funds. John and Karel took the job at the Engineer’s estimate. Some of the funds were returned to the City along with the donation of the GMC pickup that city employees are now using. Of the above mentioned Councilmen, Karel was the only one elected to start his career as Councilman. John, Ralph and Garth were all appointed by the Mayor to fill unexpired terms. Paul Kropf, ex-councilman, for his donation of the Chevrolet truck chassis that the oil distributor is now mounted on -- we thank you, Paul.

I have had a long and pleasant association with Vertis J. Swarner, whose dedication to public service and his generosity has made Crown Hill Cemetery a place of beauty. Some people are not aware of it, but the Mayor is automatically a member of the Cemetery Board.

To Bonnie Parcel, county Clerk, who has always been ready and willing to assist with information and advice on city budgets and other matters for the City, I extend my sincere thanks.

To Evelyn Reed, Local Librarian, for many hours of research of old city records that help bring our history up to date, we thank you.

N.W. Bransom, Mayor, City of Coldwater

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