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ABOUT BROWSE FEED

The Bimini

Description: The Bimini Mineral Baths, at 112 NW 4th Street, was built by Goodrum, Murphy and Croft, contractors in the early 1900's. The Bimini later became the Wagley Bathhouse. Dr. Wagley was an early pharmacist in Mineral Wells. The El Paso Morning Times in 1909 states that the re-building of the Bimini (the building here illustrated) will cost "...over $35,000." What the equivalent amount could be in modern-das dollars remains unknown. Please note the utter lack of automobiles, and the horse-drawn vehicle in front of the bath house. The meaning of the white-ink number "1861" remains to be determined.
Date: 1900?
Item Type: Photograph

The Bimini Bath House

Description: A photograph of an old postal card showing the Bimini Mineral Bath House, later known as "The Wagley Building" is shown here. It was constructed by Goodrum, Murphy, and Croft and located at 114 NW 4th Street. It was later demolished.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph

[A Bird's Eye-view of Mineral Wells]

Description: An early panoramic view of Mineral Wells is shown here. The picture is a composite of two views taken from East Mountain. Attached to the composite is a date "1901." The large building in the front middle of the picture is the Holloway & Haley livery stable. Some of the buildings are numbered on the photograph. Recognizable are: (2) The Hawthorn Well, with steeple (Right middle of the picture), (4) The original Crazy water drinking pavilion (two-story with smaller upper third floor, right middle of picture), The Lythia Well (between the Crazy Well and the Hawthorn Well), and The Hexagon House at the far right edge of picture.
Date: 1901/1902
Item Type: Photograph

Bird's Eye-view of Mineral Wells

Description: Two contiguous negatives, taken from East Mountain, looking Southwest are shown here. Please note that some landmarks have been numbered in ink on the photographs. On the first [upper] photograph (No. 3), the pavilion with the steeple on the roof,is the Hawthorne well, located at 314 NW 1st Ave. (No. 4), the large two-story structure, is the Crazy Drinking Pavilion. The Lithia Pavilion is the structure between the Hawthorne and Crazy pavilions. Note also the Hawthorn House (No. 5?), located on North Oak. The large livery stable in the left foreground has not been identified by name. Please note the Poston Building on the second [lower] photograph, on North Oak (not numbered, but the three-part building in the middle left of the photograph). Also, please note the two steeples of the first Catholic Church on NW 3rd Street, in the 600 block, on the side of West Mountain. The large two-story frame hotel (No. 2) in the left foreground has not been identified.
Date: 1905?
Item Type: Photograph

[A Bird's Eye-view of Mountains in the Distance]

Description: Illustrated here is a view of Mineral Wells from the southeast, looking northwest. On the left, the large building in front of the hill is the Chautauqua, built by public subscription in 1905. It was demolished sometime about 1912. The large white building near the edge at the left middle of the picture was the First Baptist Church, which served the congregation from 1900 to 1920. The dim building under the hill at the upper right of the picture is the East Ward School (Mineral Wells' first High School), built in 1906 and closed in 1926. Please note the windmills in the backyards.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph

[Blind Nellie at the Austin Well]

Description: Colonel W. R. Austin came from Kentucky to Palo Pinto County about 1880, and settled on Staggs Prairie. When an infection in his eye responded to mineral water treatment, he established the Austin Well, later operated by his son-in-law, Tom Sims. Blind Nellie was a fixture of the Austin Well for years. She had an interesting history: A cowboy rode her into town one day, and auctioned her off to the highest bidder, J.H. Coleman, who bid a dollar and a half for her. Then Bob Kyle took Coleman's bargain off his hands, but Colonel Austin was the one who profited most from her when he devised a method that used her to "pump" water from his well. This unique method of bringing water to the surface was an added attraction at the Austin. Instead of drawing it up by hand or using a power pump, Blind Nellie was trained to walk around in circles, pulling the water up from below. She would pause long enough for the water to empty and, as if on a hidden cue, would go around again as the receptacle was lowered back into the well, repeating her performance accurately each time. In later years, when she became confused in her ritual, she was allowed to retire. In retirement, however, Blind Nellie selected a place in her pasture, and during the working hours of the day she repeated the ritual of walking her circle in a size corresponding to the one she had walked for so many years at the Austin Well. She died in 1912.
Date: 1900?
Item Type: Photograph

Boating on Pinto Lake, Mineral Wells

Description: This appears to be a photograph of an old postcard entitled "Boating on Pinto Lake, Mineral Wells." It shows a boating party taking a cruise by motor boat, which was an activity enjoyed by many tourists to this area. The picture appeared in the Daily Mineral Wells Index on May 6, 1902, but no date was assigned the picture.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Postcard

[A Bottle-Shaped Advertisement ]

Description: This photograph shows an advertisement for the Gulf Texas and Western Railroad in the shape of a bottle of mineral water. In 1912, two gasoline-powered motor cars were added to the WMW&NW rolling stock to provide passenger service to Salesville, Oran, and Graford. The Golf Texas & Western Railroad,(GT&W)--sometimes referred to by locals as "Get your Ticket and Walk"--was built from Seymour through Olney and Jacksboro and contracted to operate motor coaches over part of WMW&NW north extension in 1912. The GT&W line joined the WMW&NW Railroad some 12 miles north of Mineral Wells. Although the contract for the use of WMW&NW system was signed February 6, 1912, actual operation over the WMW&NW line did not begin until March 27, 1913. The Gulf Texas and Western operated gasoline powered motor coaches, similar to the ones owned by WMW&NW, through Mineral Wells, Weatherford, Ft. Worth and on to Dallas. A round-trip from Seymour to Dallas was made daily by a 70-passenger gasoline-powered motor car. Completion of Morris Sheppard Dam and the impounding of Possum Kingdom Lake necessitated abandonment of the Salesville to Graford line (and consequently the entire GT&W line) by August 15, 1936. The reverse side of this Mineral Water advertisement indicates that the building of the railroad was underwritten by Beetham and Sons.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Artwork

[A Bottle-Shaped Map of Attractions]

Description: A bottle-shaped flier is illustrated here, showing the attractions and services in Mineral Wells. Evidently, this is the interior of the flier. See "Bottle-Shaped Mineral Water Ad" for the cover. All hotels, boarding houses, wells, and activities are listed, including fox hunting. See also [Bottle-Shaped Romantic Mineral Water Ad].
Date: unknown
Item Type: Artwork

[A Bottle-Shaped Mineral Water Advertisement]

Description: A picture of a mineral water advertisement, probably the cover of a flier is shown here. This is an example of the exaggerated claims made about mineral water. It advertises an "unscientific mixture of water, bottled in bond in Mineral Wells by Pleasant Memory, and marketed as 'Donkaione.' " For the (probable) interior of the flier see [Bottle-Shaped Map of Attractions]. See also [Bottle-Shaped Romantic Mineral Water Advertisement].
Date: unknown
Item Type: Artwork

[A Bottle-shaped Souvenir Booklet]

Description: Two pages of a souvenir booklet touting the benefits of Mineral Wells, Texas are illustrated here. The shape suggests a bottle of mineral water. Dr. Dan Cupid has abandoned his bow and arrow in favor of mineral water to treat heart conditions. Among his stock of waters prescribed are bottles from the Crazy, Carlsbad, Gibson, and Lamar Wells. There are other pages of this booklet elsewhere in this collection. They could perhaps be placed together in a file at some time in the future.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Artwork

The Brain Busters

Description: Black-face comedy was considered a socially acceptable form of entertainment until after World War II. The pamphlet suggests that "The Brain Busters" were a series of difficult questions sent in to the duo by listeners to their radio program. Further information about "Sugar Cane" and "February" (the black-face actors) is unfortunately lacking.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Text