A. F. Weaver Collection - Browse

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[A View of Mineral Wells]

Description: A set of buildings is shown here. The only buildings that have been identified with confidence are the Crazy Water Hotel, and the Nazareth Hospital, both at the right. The Baker occupies a small position on the extreme right.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

[A View of Mineral Wells] 1886

Description: An oval inset of Mineral Wells as it appeared in 1886. The photograph on which it is overlaid was made in approximately 1925. Above, and right of the overlay, is the Lamar Bath House and Hotel complex, the current site of the Baker Hotel. An incomplete text under the picture compares Mineral Wells to other worldwide mineral water resort cities.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

[A View of Mineral Wells, Before the Building of the Baker Hotel]

Description: A view of Mineral Wells from West Mountain, taken before the Baker Hotel was built. The picture therefore predates 1929. Just to the left of the upper center is the Hexagon Hotel. To the right of that, almost at the upper center, is the Standard Well and Amusement Park. On top of the hill are homes on what is now Northeast 4th Avenue. Some of these houses (especially the one with columns) are still in existence today [2009]. At the southern base of the hill, the house which Mr. Pratt restored in 2006-7 can be seen next to the Sanatorium. The Hexagon Hotel and the Standard Well no longer exist.
Date: November 27, 2006
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

[A View of Mineral Wells from East Mountain]

Description: A view of Mineral Wells and South Mountain, taken from atop East Mountain is shown here. Notable buildings are the West Ward School next to the "Little Rock" school house in upper right and Poston Dry Goods in left-center. The photograph was taken before the second high school was built in 1914.
Date: 1910~
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

[A View of Mineral Wells from East Mountain]

Description: A view of Mineral Wells from East Mountain looking west along NW 3rd Street is shown here. Visible landmarks include: The first Crazy Water Hotel, (built in two sections in 1911 and 1912) with its common lobby entrance on NW 3rd Street; the U.S. Post Office in the left foreground; the first Roman Catholic Church on the side of West Mountain at NW 3rd Street; Mineral Wells High School; West Ward School in the gap between West and South Mountains; and the Presbyterian Church on NW 2nd Street, one block northeast of West Ward School.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

[A View of Mineral Wells from East Mountain]

Description: A view from East Mountain, looking down on Mineral Wells and taken about 1910, includes: The First United Methodist Church, the Yeager Building, and the train depot in the background. This photograph was taken before the Baker Hotel was built.
Date: 1910~
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

View of Mineral Wells from East Mountain Showing Crazy Hotel & Nazareth Hospital

Description: A view of Mineral Wells from East Mountain, looking West-Northwest is shown here. The Crazy Hotel is visible in the near-left part of the picture, and the Nazareth Hospital in the middle-left, a block Northwest of the Crazy The Norwood Clinic (with its stately white columns), a block northeast of the Nazareth, is located near the center of the picture.
Date: 1930?/1939?
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

[A View of Mineral Wells From South Mountain]

Description: A view of Mineral Wells, looking north from South Mountain, taken after 1929, is pictured here. The front of the old Mineral Wells High School is visible in the lower left corner. The Crazy Hotel is just to the right of center. This picture comes from one of 17 (4X4) negatives that were found in an envelope from Charles W. Simonds (Route 5, Box 43, Norman, Oklahoma, 73069), addressed to A.F. Weaver Photography and postmarked Aug. 4, 1975. Also on the envelope were some telephone numbers and the remark "Father - C.W. Simonds (Clarence Winfield)."
Date: 1920?
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

[A View of NE 1st Avenue]

Description: In this view of NE 1st Avenue, the Old Post Office Building is shown at the end of the street and at the left of the picture. It is now [2007] The Woman's Club. The Baker Hotel (apparently under construction) can be seen at the far right of the picture. The Southwestern Bell Telephone Company building in the center of the picture sits across NE 1st Street, and to the north of the Baker.
Date: 1965?
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

Visitors Arriving in Our City

Description: The boy shown near the center of the picture is 10-year-old George Calvin Hazelwood, who was a newsboy at the time. The man beside the boy is Louis Farris, who worked for the Hazelwood and C. W. Massie families of Palo Pinto. They are meeting the train to pick up the daily newspapers in 1920. The crowd is typical of the week-end visitors arriving from the Dallas/Ft. Worth area. The Weatherford, Mineral Wells & Northwestern Railway Company reported 190,210 passengers for the year 1920. (This information came from page 92 of Art Weaver's "Time Was in Mineral Wells.")
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

[D. W. Griffith]

Description: D. W. Griffith is shown standing on the roof of the new Crazy Hotel, which opened in 1927; and replaced the First Crazy Hotel, which had burned in 1925. Mr. Griffith, who produced silent movies including the "Keystone Kops" comedies, and the classic film "Birth of a Nation", was a guest at the Crazy Hotel while visiting Mineral Wells in 1929. A commemorative postage stamp was issued in his honor on May 27, 1975. Local folklore has it that Mr. Griffith was impressed by the "WELCOME" sign on East Mountain (the world's largest non-commercial, electrically-lighted sign at the time). He developed the "HOLLYWOOD HILLS" addition with other partners when he returned to California, and he erected what is probably the most recognizable landmark in America: The HOLLYWOOD sign now graces Los Angeles. Both signs have survived similar difficult times in their histories. This picture appears on page 19 of A.F. Weaver's "TIME WAS in Mineral Wells", second edition, 1974.
Date: 1929
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

[The W.O.W. (Woodmen on the World) Drill Team]

Description: This picture shows the Woodmen of the World Drill Team, taken on June 19, 1947. A caption on the back of the photograph reads: WOW DRILL TEAM 6-19-47---- Herman Tolbert, Capt.--LEFT TO RIGHT: Front row: Walter Carter, Gene Lee, Jimmy Brandenburg, Charlie Davis, Bill Teichman, Idys Cox, Jr., Boyce Harvey, Billy Brooks. Back Row: Melton Brewton, Walter Moore, Hayden Hughes, Bazil Brewton, Unknown [heavily underlined, with small lacuna, also underlined, following] Roy Alderson, Roy Brewton and Eldred Fryer. A further caption, rotated 90 degrees to the first reads: "Picture taken in Convention Hall." On the front of the photograph is handwritten: "phillips [sic] photog-aphic [sic] Service Abilene, Texas" in white ink. The photograph appears in A.F. Weaver's "TIME WAS in Mineral Wells" on page 165.
Date: June 1947
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

[W. W. Howard's Hardware Store]

Description: The Howard Hardware store was once located at 101 E. Hubbard Street. The hanging electric lights, the tea table to the left, the double row of "air-tight" stoves ranks down the center aisle all strongly suggest that the photograph was taken in the early twentieth century. The dimness of the photograph makes discerning further items on sale difficult. Persons identified in picture are: Helen Howard, Flora Howard, A. L. Howard and one unidentified person.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

[The Wagley Bath House]

Description: The Wagley Mineral Baths, formerly known as the Bimini Bath House, was located at 114 NW 4th Street, the N.E. corner of NW 1st Avenue and NW 4th Street. It was constructed by Goodrum, Murphy and Croft. It was still standing in 1974, when A.F. Weaver's book "TIME WAS In Mineral Wells" was first published. An early picture of the building appears on page 129 of "Time Was in Mineral Wells." It was demolished in the late 1980's or early 1990's.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

The Wagley Bath House and Annex

Description: The Wagley Bath House and Annex (originally called "The Bimini") was located at 114 NW 4th Street. Dr. Wagley also owned and operated a pharmacy in Mineral Wells. He died in 1953, at the age of 68, from a stroke of apoplexy.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

[Walker's Grocery and Market]

Description: Shown here is the J.J. Walker Grocery & Market, once located at 614 Southeast 6th Avenue. The picture is featured in "Time Was in Mineral Wells" on page 176. The identities of the three people pictured is not known at this [2015] time. Note, however, the hand-operated gasoline pumps, the oil pumps in the background, and a sign that advertises Texaco gasoline at 18 cents per gallon!
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

We lost our job at Mineral Wells, Texas

Description: This is a picture that was found in Mr. Weaver's collection, and captioned "We lost our job at Mineral Wells, Texas." This type of advertising was used by most of the drinking pavilions in this popular health resort to tout the beneficial effects of Mineral Wells' waters. There were numerous testimonials attesting the truth of such claims. When the Food and Drug Administration began to enforce the nation's drug laws vigorously in the mid-1930's, however, there were no rigorous scientific test data to document such claims, or to warn of possible side effects that taking the mineral water might bring about. Consequently, this sort of advertising was banned after the 1930's.
Date: 1920?/1930?
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

[The Weatherford, Mineral Wells, Northwestern Railroad Depot]

Description: The Weatherford, Mineral Wells, and Northwestern (WMW&NW) Railroad began operations October 1,1891. The Texas & Pacific Railway bought out the WMW&NW in 1902, and shortly thereafter built this depot to replace a former wooden structure that had been destroyed by fire. The rail line had a colorful history, operating through World War II and into the 1990's. Construction of an extension of the line to the city of Oran was completed in 1907, and on to Graford the following January. In 1912 two McKeen motor coaches (called "Doodlebugs" by the locals)were added. These were self-contained, 200 Horsepower, 70-foot long, gasoline-powered, 80-passenger coaches which provided service between Mineral Wells, Weatherford, Fort Worth and Dallas. A round trip took less than six hours, and two "Doodlebugs" provided service in each direction every three hours. In 1913, the Gulf Texas and Western Railroad, building south from Seymour, Texas, began operations over the WMW&NW line from Salesville to Mineral Wells, thus connecting the cities of Seymour, Olney, Jacksboro, Graford, Oran, Salesville, Mineral Wells, and Weatherford with daily round-trip service to Dallas. In 1928, passenger traffic had declined to a point that passenger service was discontinued, and did not resume until the nation began mobilizing for World War II in 1940. Nearly a half million troops (429,966) passed through the depot during the war years in transit to and from Ft. Wolters training base. The City of Mineral Wells bought the 22.8 miles of track to Weatherford October 1, 1989. It was the last operator, and kept the road open for freight traffic, for the benefit of local businesses. The passenger depot was restored after the trains ceased operations, and it is now [2008] the offices of the Elliott Waldren Abstract Company, and lawyer George Gault. The right-of-way from Mineral Wells to Weatherford was converted ...
Date: 1990?
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

[The Welcome Sign]

Description: The WELCOME Sign (shown here) was built in 1922 by George Holmgren, the Texas Rotary Club's Governor,in his San Antonio iron works following the State Rotary Club's Convention in Mineral Wells. He gave the sign to the people of Mineral Wells with the understanding that they would maintain what was, at the time, the world's largest non-commercial lighted sign. The original incandescent bulbs were later replaced with lower-maintenance red neon lights by the Mineral Wells Jaycees. A Warrant Officer Company from Fort Wolters moved the sign from its original site on East Mountain to the east side of Bald Mountain (now called Welcome Mountain), overlooking Elmwood Cemetery, in 1972. It remains there today [2008], lighted at its base with flood lights, to greet visitors coming from the east. This is a picture, taken in 1972, of the restored sign.
Date: 1972
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

Welcome Sign & Lookout Tower: 1929

Description: The WELCOME sign was donated to the city of Mineral Wells in 1922 by George Holmgren, President of the Texas Rotary Club, in appreciation for the hospitality extended the Rotary Club at its State Convention in Mineral Wells that year. The caption on the photograph reads: "Reputed to be the largest Non-commercial electric sign in U.S." East Mountain was a popular place for viewing the city, especially for photographers. The lookout tower atop West Mountain (above the WELCOME sign) was destroyed by a tornado in 1930. The Welcome Sign was built by Holmgren in his San Antonio Iron Works in 1922. He gave the sign to the people of Mineral Wells with the understanding that they would maintain the sign and the many light bulbs required to light it. The Mineral Wells Jaycees later replaced the light bulbs with lower-maintenance red neon lights. A Warrant Officer Club Company from Fort Wolters moved the sign from East Mountain in 1972 to the east side of Bald Mountain, where it remains today [2008], lighted with flood lights at its base. It is reported that this sign inspired D.W. Griffith, to promote possibly the most recognizable landmark in the United States, the HOLLYWOOD sign in California, following his visit to Mineral Wells in 1928. Griffith, Producer/Director of the early movie classic, "Birth of a Nation," also produced the "Keystone Kops" comedies. The house in the foreground (an example of Queen Anne architecture, spindle-work sub-type) was the home of druggist Dr. C.F. Yeager. Also in the picture, about half-way up the mountain, is the water tower supplying mineral water to the then new Baker Hotel. The object in the upper-left-hand corner of the picture invites speculation.
Date: 1929
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

The Welcome Sign on East Mountain, Mineral Wells, Texas

Description: This picture is taken from a postcard claiming that the "Welcome" sign on East Mountain is "reputed to be the largest non-commercial electric sign in U.S." It has been claimed that the "Hollywood" sign was inspired by the "Welcome" sign, but this is likely a folk legend. (The preceding picture is a black and white original of this tinted picture. A more complete description may be found there.)
Date: unknown
Item Type: Postcard
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library

[The Wells Hotel]

Description: This is a picture of the Wells Hotel, in the W. E. Mayes Building, once located on the northwest corner of NW 1st Avenue and NW 3rd Street. This photograph appears on page 105 of the "Time Was", Second Edition. Please note the complete lack of automobiles in the picture. Although it is not apparent from the photograph, the street is not likely to have been paved. The picture was most likely taken in the early years of the twentieth century.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph
Partner: Boyce Ditto Public Library