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ABOUT BROWSE FEED

[The Crazy Flats and First Crazy Hotel]

Description: A view of early Mineral Wells from East Mountain shows the Crazy Flats in the foreground, and the first Crazy Hotel at the left, at the rear of it. The small building at the right, rear of the Crazy Flats housed the "Crazy Woman's Well" that contributed the generic "Crazy Water" name to the local mineral water. Crazy Flats, the second Crazy Drinking Pavilion with "Rooms for Rent" on the second floor, was built in 1909. The first Crazy Hotel was built in two sections: The first section, at the left rear of Crazy Flats, was built in 1912, and the second section, left of it, was built in 1914, and joined to the first with a common lobby. The low building to the left of Crazy Flats and in front of the Hotel was the Crazy Bath House and Drugstore. A fire started in the drugstore March 15, 1925, and destroyed the entire city block. The second Crazy Hotel, covering this entire city block, opened in 1927. The original Crazy Well is now situated in the sidewalk at the northwest corner of the Hotel with a cover over it. The second Crazy Hotel is now [2008] a Retirement Home. It was forcibly closed down in 2010. Also visible in the picture above the "Crazy" Complex and below the gap between West Mountain and South Mountain are the "Old High School", the "Little Rock School" and the Fourth Ward School. Four blocks behind and above the Hotel in the picture, the domed First Presbyterian Church is visible midway between the "Crazy Block" and the schools. The Roman Catholic church with its white steeple is at the far upper right, and the second Carlsbad Pavilion is across First Avenue, directly to the west (right rear) of the Crazy Flats.
Date: 1914?
Item Type: Photograph

[Mr. and Mrs. R.S. Dalton]

Description: "Mr. & Mrs. R.S. Dalton on their 50th Wedding Anniversary as held in the second wooden structure of the First Baptist Church. Presiding is The Reverend Mr. Harlan Matthews." Robert (Bob) Dalton's father, Marcus L. Dalton, was killed by Indians on the Ft. Worth-Ft. Belknap military road in northeastern Palo Pinto County in 1870. Bob Dalton discovered the Dalton Oil Field on his ranch in north central Palo Pinto County, and the boom town that sprang up there was named Dalton City after him. He later moved to southwest Mineral Wells before building a large home, adorned with native rock, on 2101 NW 4th Avenue.
Date: 1910?
Item Type: Photograph

[The Gibson Well- - Souvenir Photograph]

Description: This picture appears to be a souvenir photograph of the Gibson Well drinking pavilion and park, one of the earliest mineral water supply spots in Mineral Wells. It grew into one of the larger parks and pavilions in town. The gasoline-powered "Dinky Cars" of the Mineral Wells Lakewood Park Scenic Railway passed here every quarter-hour (from 1905 to 1909) on their journey to and from Lake Pinto. The Crazy Industries had acquired the property by 1938, and it became known as Crazy Park, a beautiful botanical park. The mineral water industry became a victim of the FDA and the wartime activities during World War II. As a result, the mineral water pavilions, along with other parts of the local health industry, died a slow death. The First Christian Church now occupies the site of the Gibson pavilion.
Date: 1910?
Item Type: Photograph

Gibson Well

Description: The discovery of mineral water, and its reported healing powers, sparked an influx of health-seeking visitors in 1881-82. A flurry of drilling activity resulted in incorporation of the city of Mineral Wells in 1882, as water was sought to satisfy the booming market; so much so that no one remembers the order in which the wells were drilled. The Gibson well, however, was one of the early ones. Located at 705 NW 2nd Avenue, it grew into one of the largest parks and drinking pavilions in town. The gasoline-powered "Dinky cars" of the Mineral Wells Lakewood Park Scenic Railway passed by it every quarter-hour, from 1905 to 1909, on their journeys to and from Lake Pinto. The Gibson property was acquired by the Crazy. It was known as the Crazy Park in 1938, and it was made into a beautiful botanical garden. It is currently the site of the First Christian Church.
Date: 1910?
Item Type: Photograph

[A Donkey on 6th Street Mineral Wells, 1916]

Description: Donkeys were still prevalent in 1916, and so were the grass-grown steel tracks of the "Dinky Cars" (Mineral Wells Lakewood Park Scenic Railway which had ceased operations in 1909) on NW 6th Street. The house to the left is an example of the architecture of this time. The source of the photograph is A. F. Weaver's, "TIME WAS in Mineral Wells..." first edition, 1975, on page 82.
Date: 1916
Item Type: Photograph

[An Aerial View of Mineral Wells (2 of 2)]

Description: This aerial photograph is adjacent to, and south of, the previous photograph. It is taken from South Mountain, looking east-south-east. The Chautauqua is on the upper left of the picture. The Crazy Flats Drinking Pavilion (which burned March 15, 1925) is below and to the right of the Chautauqua. The area in foreground is a residential area of west Mineral Wells, Texas.
Date: 1910?
Creator: A. F. Weaver
Item Type: Photograph

Oak Street , Looking South

Description: We have here a picture of Oak Street, looking South. The Poston Company and the Palace Saloon are easily visible in photograph. The wording "Fishburn Dallas" appears on the photograph. The unpaved street, several horses and wagons in picture date the picture to an era before 1914, when the street was paved.
Date: 1910?
Item Type: Photograph

Standard Park

Description: The Standard Park not only had a swimming pool, but a movie theater and dancing pavilion, as well, for the entertainment of health-seekers. A trolley to it operated at 600 North Oak Street from 1907 to 1913. (Note the Kingsley Hotel above and left of the Standard, built into the side of East Mountain--later destroyed by fire.) First known as the Vichy Well and Natatorium, then later as the Beach, the Standard was torn down in World War II; and a USO Club was built here for soldiers at Camp Wolters. The USO building was given to the city after the war, and renamed the North Oak Community Center. The Crazy Water Festival Committee is currently [2003] attempting to restore the Community Center.
Date: 1913?
Item Type: Photograph

[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

Carlisle House, Mineral Wells, Texas

Description: The Carlisle House was owned and managed by Mrs. A[lexander] E[mmett] Carlisle, after the death of her husband in 1911. It was one of the largest hotels of its day, boasting sixty rooms. It was destroyed in a fire on July 4, 1914. The Abilene "Reporter" of July 5, 1914 reports that fire began its course at the Tourist Hotel (located, at the time, at 315 NW 4th street). It spread to the New Hazel Hotel (at 305 NW 4th Street), took in the Harrel House, (at 301 NW 4th street), the Lake Charles, Louisiana (511 NW 2nd Street), and the Burk House, 601 NW 3rd Avenue, as well as seven houses that were not hotels. The fire was so thorough that in 1921, the area was still devoid of buildings. It was on this site that Mordecai Ham (he who converted Billy Graham) put up a tent for a revival on March 23, 1927. He accepted the position of pastor at the First Baptist Church in Oklahoma City on June 19, 1927. He remained in that position until June 16, 1929, when he returned to the revival circuit. The Carlisle House was located in the same block as the the Mineral Wells Clinic, which was known to be in existence in 1928. It later became the Nazareth Hospital (q.v.).
Date: 1913?
Item Type: Photograph

Mineral Wells High School

Description: We have here a view from the south of Mineral Wells' High School, built in 1915 at 101 NW 5th Avenue. This side of the building faces W. Hubbard Street. The tower atop the West Ward School can be seen below the skyline, and to the left, above the high school. (The West Ward school was torn down in 1930.)
Date: 1915?/1930?
Item Type: Photograph

Pat-Ike

Description: An inscription at the bottom of the photograph reads "Pat--Ike." The "Ike" presumably refers to Ike Zablosky, who came from Russia to Philadelphia in 1890. He and his wife, Fanny Jaffee, later moved to Mineral Wells for health reasons where he became involved in the fur-and-hide business. Zablosky once described the northwest part of Palo Pinto County as a "'Possum kingdom"; hence the first flood-control lake on the Brazos River was named Possum Kingdom Lake. (The story is that it was named that by president Franklin Roosevelt himself.) Zabloski sponsored a local baseball team. He bought a Texas League franchise, when it became available, after he moved to Dallas. It was to become Dallas' first professional baseball team. He pioneered the founding of city farm teams, and acted as umpire and coach. The last name of the "Pat" in the photograph is unknown. He was associated with a team known as the White Sox, which held spring training in Mineral Wells in 1911 and again from 1915-1917. This picture is dated 1917.
Date: 1917
Item Type: Photograph

[The Crazy Hotel Lobby]

Description: This picture shows the First Crazy Hotel Lobby in 1913. The first Crazy Hotel was built in two sections; the first section, which contained this lobby, was built in 1912. The second section was added in 1914, and joined to the first with the two sections sharing this same sky-lighted lobby. A fire on March 15, 1925 destroyed the first Crazy Hotel along with all the other businesses in this block. The second Crazy Hotel, covering the entire city block, opened in 1927. It is now [2008] a retirement home. It was shut down--after much contention--in 2010.
Date: 1913
Item Type: Photograph

[Children With Bicycle and Hoop,]

Description: Dated "Jan 10, 1919", this picture was contained in an envelope postmarked "Aug. 4 '75", and addressed to A. F. Weaver Photography from Charles W. [Windell] Simonds. Handwriting on the envelope indicates it was from a short-wave "Ham' radio operator correspondent and friend of Mr. Weaver. Notes on the envelope indicate the picture was probably taken by the correspondent's father, Clarence Winfield Simonds. The sign on the tree at the left edge of the picture indicates this was the Vance Villa (Rooming House) in a residential part of town. (Vance Villa is listed in the 1914 City Director of Mineral Wells at 811 N. College, which is now NW 5th Avenue.) Note the hoop held by the child on the left, while the boy on the right appears to be holding a unicycle--or, perhaps, an early bicycle whose rear wheel is not visible..
Date: January 10, 1919
Item Type: Photograph

[The Carlsbad Well: Second Building]

Description: Shown here is a picture of the second Carlsbad Well building, as it appeared around 1915. The stained glass windows are shown installed, and the "Ben Hur" street car tracks have been removed. This picture appears in Weaver, A. F., "TIME WAS ...", 1st Edition, on page 63. The original Carlsbad Pavilion was on the northeast corner of NW 1st Avenue and NW 6th Street, directly across the street west of the Crazy Drinking Pavilion. The Mineral Wells Lakewood Park Scenic Railway provided a gasoline-powered motor car, a "Dinky Car", which provided service every 1/4 hour to Lake Pinto from 1903 to 1909. The "Ben Hur" was the last and largest of the "Dinky Cars" whose tracks, on NW 1st Street, passed the Carlsbad pavilion and turned west on NW 6th Street. The El Paso Morning Times of 1909 reports that the construction of the second Texas Carlsbad building will cost about $40,000. The equivalent sum in modern dollars is not known. The new building was to be "50 x 130 feet. It will be fire proof [sic] and steam heat [sic]." The building was taken over by the Crazy Hotel for the Crazy Laundry and Dry Cleaning after the drinking pavilion was closed in the 1930's.
Date: 1915?
Item Type: Photograph

Carlsbad Well, Mineral Wells, Texas

Description: The Texas Carlsbad Well, located at 415 NW 1st Avenue (west of the Crazy Water Well and Drinking Pavilion), is shown here. A more modern brick building was added to this wooden pavilion in 1909; both structures are visible in pictures taken during a Woodmen of the World convention in 1911. (Note: The newer Carlsbad building was taken over by the Crazy Hotel for its Laundry and Dry Cleaning when the second Carlsbad Pavilion shut down operations during World War II.)
Date: 1910?
Item Type: Photograph

[The Foster Hotel]

Description: This picture depicts a hotel--done in Queen Anne style (Spindle-work sub-type). Please note the unusual two-story wraparound porch, also with spindle-work. It appears to have been excerpted from a fragment of advertising copy that gives the name of the building as "The Foster", and extols the owner (Mr. T.J. Foster) as "...an old hotel hand of large acquaintance and wide experience, who has studied the wants and needs of his guests[,] and loses no opportunity of making them comfortable." Polk's Directory for 1910 lists the proprietor of the hotel as F. J. Kowalski. A hand-written note on the edge of the negative (not visible in the picture) states: "NW 1st Ave 6th Street." This address is only approximate. A more accurate address is given in the photograph "The Foster Hotel", also to be found in this collection. Although it is not certain, the clothes of the people shown standing around the hotel strongly suggest that the picture was taken early in the twentieth century. A barely-legible colophon, appearing to read "FONE" appears in the lower left-hand corner.
Date: 1910?
Item Type: Photograph

Hotel Damron, Mineral Wells, Texas

Description: This picture shows a post-card view of the Damron Hotel in Mineral Wells, Texas. It was built in 1906 as The Colonial Hotel by rancher J.T. Holt for his second wife, because she would not live in the country. The hotel was traded around 1917 to Agnew and Bessie Damron in exchange for a ranch. The hotel burned completely in 1978.
Date: 1918~
Item Type: Photograph

[Photograph of Public Mineral Water Well]

Description: Photograph used on the dust cover of A. F. Weaver's book, "TIME WAS In Mineral Wells", Second Edition, 1988 It is identified as "Visitors to Mineral Wells at 'Public Mineral Water Well' around 1910. The picture was furnished by Mrs. Raymond York. On left is Ellie Landry of Dallas. Second from right is Mrs. William Whitehead Gardner of Lawrence, Texas, grandmother of Raymond York of Mineral Wells.
Date: 1910?
Item Type: Photograph

[A Horse-Drawn Fire Wagon]

Description: Mineral Wells had an early horse-drawn fire wagon, pulled by two white horses (named Joe and Frank) and driven by a man named Cogdell. This picture is included on page 189 of the Second Edition of "TIME WAS in Mineral Wells...", by A. F. Weaver. The city's first fire station was located at 202 N. Oak Avenue, but the horses had difficulty responding to emergency calls from this fire station because the fire wagon's wheels tended to get trapped in the street car tracks that ran down the center of Oak Avenue, which was not paved at that time. This fire was in the central business district (note the roofs of two multistory buildings, visible at the upper left edge of the picture.) Fire hoses laid along the street are being used by two men in the left middle background to furnish water to fight the fire. The location of this particular fire is not specified, but is probably the Delaware Hotel (formerly the St. Nicholas.) Mineral Wells has experienced several disastrous fires in the past; one in 1914, two blocks west of the Delaware' location, destroyed six city blocks.
Date: 1912?
Item Type: Photograph

[Panoramic Photograph of Mineral Wells]

Description: Panoramic photograph of Mineral Wells taken from Southwest Mountain looking southeast. The ice plant is visible in the right center of this picture, but other landmarks have not been identified.
Date: January 11, 1919
Item Type: Photograph

[Pole Vaulting at Elmhurst Park]

Description: Information on the back of the photograph states: "Games (pole vaulting) at Elmhurst Park two miles southwest of Mineral Wells where [the] sewage treatment plant is now located. Picture taken around 1910."
Date: 1910?
Item Type: Photograph

[Looking South on Mesquite Street]

Description: A photograph that looks south on Mesquite Street (in 2008: NE 1st Avenue)is shown here. It was taken after 1914, as the pavement indicates. Several automobiles and a horse-drawn buggy share the street. Note the water fountain between cars in right-center foreground. This water fountain was later moved to Mineral Wells' West City Park, and is now in the "Towne Common", located in the 100 block of SW 1st Avenue. The picture may be found on page 79 of A.F. Weaver's "TIME WAS . . . " Mini Edition, 2004.
Date: 1915?
Item Type: Photograph