Jim Bulls

Reedley History: Take Pride in the Ride

by Jim Bulls

Recently Channel 30 News aired a special on the unsafe school buses on our valley roads. I was surprised to see that the school transportation department featured in the newscast was Reedley’s Kings Canyon Unified. However, I wasn’t so surprised that the only problem cited was exhaust emissions. Many people are unaware that the school bus is the safest mode of transportation known to man. I am an advocate for clean air and I am aware of the emission problems all internal combustion engines have, but before everyone gasps for air and holds their nose when they are around a school bus, let’s explore how safe that school bus actually is.

Imprisoned! A Reedley History Article

by Jim Bulls

From Craycroft bricks kilned on G Street by Chinese immigrants some 122 years ago, I rose near the railroad tracks of Reedley. I was called the Granger Warehouse and I would soon be known as the largest wheat warehouse west of the Mississippi River. When the bottom fell out of the wheat market, I became the home of the largest raisin plant in the world. I had a part in providing tasty treats to our doughboys during World War I.

Reedley History: Reunions

by Jim Bulls

Old Moral Cemetery, Pottawattamie County, Oklahoma, 1946. I had just turned five and this was my first reunion. The family all gathered around Great-Grandma Eliza Jane's grave. Her dying wish was never to have rain fall on her grave, so when she was buried the men-folk built a rock box about three feet high with a slightly domed top to shed water. Now, it was covered with picnic baskets filled with fried chicken, corn on the cob, potato salad, deviled eggs and biscuits. For dessert, Uncle Glen churned up some homemade ice cream to be served with your choice of apple, cherry, pecan or pumpkin pie. After lunch, the relatives walked among the graves, reminiscing and telling stories about family members who have gone before, while the kids played tag around the tombstones.

The Continuing Saga of the Granger

by Jim Bulls

Back in 1976, the year our nation celebrated its bicentennial, we looked around locally and realized that many of Reedley’s historic building landmarks had slipped away.
Gone was the headquarters ranch house of the town’s namesake, T.L. Reed, along with the bunkhouse and barn that once housed harness and tack for hundreds of draft animals needed for a farm operation of close to 30,000 acres. These buildings were demolished in the name of progress--to make way for the expansion of Reedley College.

Reedley History: Cheap-O-Renovation

by Jim Bulls

Early in the 1900s, C.L. Drath, who lived in Los Angeles at the time, traveled north in search of a suitable place to raise his family. On his return trip to L.A., he stopped in Reedley to visit friends and was so taken with the river, the mountains, the community, and the Methodist Episcopal Church, that he picked Reedley as his new home. There were four new homes being built on D Street, and Drath chose the one on the three lot parcel (75'). This house was larger than the others, although they all had the same floor plan.

Happy Father’s Day: A Reedley History Story

by Jim Bulls

It was a cold and windy, West Texas thunderstorm that was pounding Amherst's brand-new South Plains Farmer's Co-Op Hospital when Howard Bulls joined the ranks of fatherhood. He was well aware that this honor could be short-lived: my mother had been hospitalized since the first day of March, battling toxemia. I arrived at two pounds, and with no incubator available, Dr. McDonald gave me a life expectancy of three days. Using the technology of a chicken brooder, the janitor rigged up a tent and a heat lamp over my crib.



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