OLD WINFIELD LANDMARKS - Panel Nine Winfield Public Library Exhibit

St. James Hotel & Bertha Clark’s Restaurant

Ruth (Archer) Sparks of 1716 Millington recalls having coffee "with the girls" at the restaurant while waiting for the bus to take the Winfield workers to Wichita for Beech Aircraft’s midnight shift. "There was also a bus for Boeing workers, " she said. Henry McCaslin was the driver of the Beech bus, and Frank Halbert, an experienced mechanic, "kept everything going." The hotel and restaurant were side-by-side on the west side of Main street near the present theater. Ruth recalls that the restaurant was open 24 hours a day with Fred Sparks assisting his mother. "Everything was clean and the food was good," she said. Before going to work for Beech, Ruth worked at the Co-op Grocery on Main Street, now the site of the Winfield Pawn Shop. At the co-op, Ruth’s salary was $20.00 a week. At Boeing, she got $45.00 a week plus bonuses.

Howard Buffum April, 2000