"Clay County Democrat"
Editor, O.T. Ward
RECTOR HAS NEW STORE
Hoot's New and Used Furniture Store was opened in the south room of the Joseph Wolf building on January 1st. Mr. Hoot is a former business man of Holcomb, Mo., having bought out a furniture business at that place and moved it to Rector.
He and his wife and four children are making their home in Rector, and state that they are well pleased with the opening which they have had. The children will be in school next week and Mr. and Mrs. Hoot will be in charge of the store.
Mr. C. A. "Jeff" Hoots opened his furniture store in Rector, in the south end of the historic Wolf building, on the very first day of January in 1935. This location was on the north side of Phillips Drugstore.
In the 1930 Missouri Census, your writer finds "Jeff" Hoots, his wife, Becca Tate Hoots, and their son, Elzey D, and daughter, Virginia Hoots. When this family arrived in Rector, Jeff was 38 years old, Becca, 29, Elzey D., 11, and Virginia was 7 years old. Plus, there were 2 more sons, Lester C., age 4, and Larry T., 3. Another child, daughter, Bettie Hoots, was born and died in 1933 at Holcomb.
Perhaps, our older readers(at least in their 70's), might remember the Hoots Furniture Store, but I haven't found any newspaper material advertising their store, as many of the late 1930's editions of the "Clay County Democrat", are missing. I do know that the Hoots family lived in the back of their store in the beginning, but were able to buy Carl McCluney's house on the east side of town, sometime in February. By 1940, the Hoots family were living west of Rector, out in the Vowell Community, and Jeff was doing some farming.
Off and on, during the 1940's, the Hoots family ran the Rector Hotel and Cafe. I guess that the family lived in the Hotel when they operated it, and then lived out at their farm otherwise.
The last date that I found in the "Democrat" showing the Hoots family at the Rector Hotel, was in the fall of 1946. At the same time, Jeff and Becca's son, Elzey D., was operating the East Side Garage. Elzey's primary mechanic was Clinton Remagen, who married Elzey's sister, Virginia Hoots, in 1945.
By the early 1950's the Hoots family had left Rector, and C.A. "Jeff" Hoots died in Jonesboro in 1954, while visiting daughter, Virginia Remagen. Jeff had been living in Illinois, with son, Lester Hoots. Jeff Hoots was buried in Holcomb, Missouri. Your writer couldn't find any information on the death of Becca Tate Hoots.
I would appreciate any further info on this Rector business family.