Rescuing Texas History, 2009 - Browse

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Beeville Main Street 1914

Description: View of Washington Street in 1914 looking north. The red brick three stories building on the left was the first “skyscraper” for Beeville. It was the Grand Opera House, built by A.F. Rees and E.J. Kinkler at the corner of Washington and Bowie Streets in 1907, and opened in 1908. Many Broadway stage plays, musical comedies, and light operas were presented in the opera house. The building was destroyed by fire in 1919. The building to the left of the Grand Opera House was Beeville’s first bank, the First National Bank of Beeville, which opened in 1890, and moved to this location by 1894. This postcard shows the modes of transportation available in the early 1900’s, a buggy, automobile, wagon and horse. By 1908 automobiles were owned by several individuals in Beeville.
Date: September 29, 1914
Partner: Bee County Historical Commission

Beeville Post Office

Description: In 1857, Michael Seeligson was the first postmaster at Beeville-on the Medio (originally Medio Hill in Goliad County), five miles northeast of the present town of Beeville. In the new county seat after 1889, the Beeville Post Office was moved several times. Opened on June 5, 1918, the present neoclassical building was built under Secretary of the Treasury William G. McAdoo, with Supervising Architect James A. Wetmore. During construction, on May 7, 1917, contractor Robert B. Brown shot and killed Drayman J.P. Hermes. Found guilty of homicide in federal court, Brown appealed. In 1921, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Homes ruled that Brown acted in self defense, thus establishing the right to stand one’s ground in federal law. With the WWII boom and Chase Naval Air Field, the Beeville Post Office was upgraded to a first-class post office in 1944. Other changes followed, such as the end of mail contracts for the railroads in December of 1952. In 1961, the size of the building was doubled by the matched addition of the north half of the present structure. Much needed parking space was provided on the south side of the building in 1989. One block from the courthouse, this historic building and its postal services continue to be vital to the life of the town.
Date: 1918
Partner: Bee County Historical Commission

Burning Oil Well

Description: Photograph on postcard of the C.L. Perkins No. 5 oil well on fire near Ranger, Texas in 1919. Fire and smoke reach high in the sky, towering over the nearby trees.
Date: 1919
Partner: Permian Basin Petroleum Museum, Library and Hall of Fame

First National Bank of Beeville

Description: A 1913 postcard with an image of a two-story, brick building labeled "First National Bank Building, Beeville, Texas." The postcard was sent from Beeville January 24, 1913 and addressed to Mr. & Mrs. W. M. Billingsly in Mineral, Texas. Part of the postcard is damaged, but the text reads "...certainly did...ourselves while w...all day think I will fo...my good time any ways...You must come and see us when you come...With Love from R[..]erta & Lonnie"
Date: January 24, 1913
Partner: Bee County Historical Commission

Golden Cycle Oil Fire

Description: Photograph on postcard of the Golden Cycle oil gusher on fire in 1919. Flames and smoke billow into the sky.
Date: 1919
Partner: Permian Basin Petroleum Museum, Library and Hall of Fame

Men Placing Boilers

Description: Photograph on postcard of men setting up boilers to put out an oil fire at the C.L. Perkins No. 5 oil well in Eastland County, Texas in 1919. Smoke from the fire can be seen over the workers.
Date: 1919
Partner: Permian Basin Petroleum Museum, Library and Hall of Fame

Oil Well on Fire

Description: Photograph on postcard an oil fire at the C.L. Perkins No. 5 oil well near Ranger in Eastland County, Texas in 1919. Smoke and flames billow into the sky, while debris from the fire can be seen strewn over the ground.
Date: 1919
Partner: Permian Basin Petroleum Museum, Library and Hall of Fame