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ABOUT BROWSE FEED

[Photograph of New Suspension Bridge at Lover's Retreat]

Description: This is a photograph of a suspension bridge for pedestrian traffic across Eagle Creek at Lover's Retreat. Formerly a public park, and now on private property, it was located four miles west of Palo Pinto on the old Bankhead Highway (now U.S. Highway 180).
Date: 1920?

[The Mineral Wells Mounted Police]

Description: A copy of a newspaper clipping, the caption identifies members of the Mineral Wells Mounted Police "57 years ago." Identified are: "Uncle Billy Wood" on his white horse (not a member of the force); Bob Pate; Paul Craig; Jim Barrett, probably Chief of Police at the time; Paul Granbury. All are reported to be deceased at time of printing. The picture was furnished to the paper courtesy Mrs. Paul Granbury. The sign on the building at the far left of the picture has been tentatively identified as a Livery Stable. Though the sign is visible, the distance has made its contents extremely obscure. The first city hall was located at the corner of First Avenue and Third Street, with a fence to hold impounded livestock. The rounding up of stray livestock was the primary duty of the mounted police in 1910. Two more more individuals were also forbidden to fight in public; no-one was permitted to use obscene language; playing cards for liquor. The renting of houses for the playing of cards was also forbidden. Teams were not allowed to be unhitched while attached to wagons, and vagrants were fined $10- In short, the police team were kept busy. These details are taken from "The Mineral wells Police Department 1882-1988" by Kaye Ashby, in the custody of the Boyce Ditto Library.
Date: 1930/1939

[Photograph of Suspension Bridge over Brazos River]

Description: this is a photograph of suspension bridge being built over the Brazos river near the town of Brazos, in Palo Pinto county. The view is looking west. An inscription on the mounting of the photograph reads: "A Photographic Souvenir from Mineral Wells, the Great Health and Pleasure Resort of Texas."
Date: unknown

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?

[Twenty Men and One Woman in Front of a Building]

Description: Illustrated here are 20 unidentified men (some in uniform) and 1 unidentified woman standing in front of an unidentified building. Four of the men have removed their hats. The prevalence of uniforms suggests either the military or the police. The high boots worn by two of the men (and the hats that some of the have), the dress of the woman all suggest an early 1930's date for the photograph. The occasion that brought them to that place is not known. The photograph taken by Young's Studio of Mineral Wells, Texas.
Date: unknown

[Two Women in Wylie Park]

Description: Two women (one using an umbrella as a parasol) are pictured strolling in Wylie Park. Notes on back of the photograph read: "Corner of N. Oak and N.E. 1st Street, the West side of Wylie Park, a popular place for strolling." North Oak Avenue is in background, with North to the right in the picture. Hazelwood Drugs is on the west side of Oak Ave, opposite the park. Mineral Wells. The streets of Mineral Wells were paved in the summer of 1914. A wagon can be seen traveling north on Oak Avenue. What appears to be a work crew may be seen at the corner indicates that the finishing touches may have been in the process of being applied to the paving as the picture was taken.
Date: 1914?

[A Trolley Car of the] Mineral Wells Electric System

Description: A "Major" J. D. Beardsley (1837-1911)--a Canadian who fought for the Union in the Civil war--built an electric trolley line that ran from North Oak, south to the train depot, west to Pecan Street (NW 4th Avenue), south on Pecan Street, to the ridge in the Lowe Place Addition, west to Pollard Creek, where Mr. Beardsley laid out Elmhurst Park (q.v.). A cross-line on Hubbard street ran east to Elmwood Cemetery. By the end of 1906, Beardsley owned sixteen cars, running on approximately ten miles of tracks. It was reported that an interurban line to run to Millsap, Weatherford, and thence to Fort Worth was planned. In fact, speculation had been made that an interurban trolley system had been Major Beardsley's ambition right from the start. The route for this interurban was laid out by "Major" Beardsley. A man named Gid R.Turner proposed a rival line. Confused reports by 1907 had been made that the two enterprises were being merged, but Major Beardsley denied the report. (In August 1907, Turner was required by Weatherford to tell his intentions. He made no answer. Neither line was ever built, perhaps due to the Panic of 1907, because by December of 1907, the Beardsley enterprise was declared "Dead.". Portions of the tracks were removed near the water wells dug by Mr. Ed Dismuke (q.v., in the description field.), by a syndicate of Beardsley's creditors ,including D. T. Bomar, (who bought the railway and assorted properties at auction for $75,000) and Morgan Jones in 1911. His extensive properties went to several of his other creditors. The picture appears to come from the "Daily Mineral Wells Index" , which takes two entire pages to sing the praises of "Major" Beardsley, and to announce the start of the trolley line in June of 1902. [The date ...
Date: 1907?/1913?

[The Damron Hotel Fire, 9 of 21: Firemen and a Fire Truck Near the North Side of Budiling]

Description: This photograph shows another view of the early response to the holiday conflagration that consumed the Damron Hotel on December 22, 1975. The Damron was built in 1906, during Mineral Wells' heyday as a popular resort city. Originally named the Colonial Hotel by J. T. Holt, and built for his second wife, the name of the hotel was changed in 1917 when Mr. Holt traded the hotel to Agnew and Bessie Damron in exchange for a ranch. The hotel was located at 109 W. Hubbard, and the spectacular fire received extensive photographic coverage.
Date: December 22, 1975

[The Damron Hotel Fire, 8 of 21: An Early Stage of the Fire, Looking North]

Description: This view of the spectacular holiday [Christmas] fire that consumed the Damron Hotel completely on December 22, 1975, was taken from SW 1st Street at the southwest corner of the block in the early stages of the fire. The Damron Hotel was built as the Colonial Hotel in 1906 by J. T. Holt for his second wife. She adamantly refused to live in the country. The name was changed in 1917 when it was traded to Agnew and Bessie Damron in exchange for a ranch. It was located at 109 W. Hubbard. The fire received extensive photographic coverage.
Date: December 22, 1975

Aerial View of Camp Wolters

Description: The only information about this photograph appears to be the written legends on it: [At its top] MW-4 AERIAL VIEW OF CAMP WOLTERS, TEXAS [At its bottom] PHOTO BY AERIAL PHOTO SERVICE KALAMAZOO--DALLAS 1B-H586 Camp Wolters was the predecessor of Fort Wolters in Mineral Wells.
Date: unknown

[A Panorama Taken in 1974 (first)]

Description: Shown here is a panoramic View of Mineral Wells, Texas taken August 8, 1974. The Baker Hotel and the Crazy Water Hotel are visible. The Convention Center is seen in the far left of the photograph. The view is from West Mountain, looking toward East Mountain over north Mineral Wells.
Date: August 10, 1974

[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

[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~

[A Building Being Demolished]

Description: This building, once the second Post Office, had stood at the corner of 201 SE 1st Avenue and Hubbard Street. This building (as the photograph shows) was subsequently demolished. A Piggly Wiggly grocery store was located on its site. As of March 2, 2009, the place was occupied by the Dollar General Store. This picture may be found in A.F. Weaver's "Time Once was in Mineral Wells" on p. 149
Date: unknown

The Avalon

Description: The Avalon Hotel was located at NW 3rd Street and NW 3rd Avenue. The architecture of the building seems to be Queen Anne. Assembled here in front of the hotel is a group of people, possibly hotel guests. Judging by the graininess of the picture, and the clothing of the people, it must have been taken about the early decades if the twentieth century. A reversed-image of this picture appears on page 100 of A.F. Weaver's book "TIME WAS In Mineral Wells", First Edition 1975.
Date: unknown

[Dr. J.H. McCracken Home, 2 of 3]

Description: The Dr. J.H. McCracken home built in 1904 at 516 West Hubbard Street. It was restored by Gil Hull. Joseph Hill McCracken was born on a farm near Springtown, Texas, October 1, 1867. He graduated from the University of Tennessee Medical School in 1891, and returned to Texas. On October 15, 1895, he married Marie Sue Wilson, the daughter of Oliver Loving's youngest daughter, Margaret. He was elected President of the Texas Medical Association in 1911, and practiced medicine in Mineral Wells for over fifty years. He frequently laughed about having "delivered babies of babies of babies." Dr. McCracken died in March of 1954, and his wife died in November of 1955. Both are buried in Mineral Wells' Woodland Park Cemetery. Professor John N, McCracken, who established the Mineral Wells College directly across the street west of the McCracken home, is believed to be Dr. McCracken's father. It is presently [2016] the offices of Brown and Ford, attorneys-at-law. [For details of the Mineral Wells College, please see the picture "Mineral Wells School, Texas."]
Date: unknown

[A Building at the 500 Block of SW 4th Avenue]

Description: This house, now [2009] located at 510 SW 4th Avenue at the corner of SW 4th Avenue and 5th Street, was a part of the original Mineral Wells College. The large structure was built in 1891 at 101 NW 5th Street. The front half of it was moved to its current location, and turned into a residence around 1902. The intersecting gables mark it as Queen Anne, but it may have undergone remodeling since it was built. Please note the two-story wraparound porch, which is rare in all parts of the nation, except for the south. This photograph may be found on page 170 of "Time Was..." by A.F. Weaver. [For more details about the College of Mineral Wells, please see the picture "Mineral Wells School, Texas."]
Date: unknown

[The Brewer Home]

Description: The Brewer home on East Mountain is shown here, from a picture taken April 4, 1976. It is visible from most of North Oak Avenue. Originally the Murphy Home, the building underwent many renovations during the period of Mr. Murphy's residence. Mr. Murphy was a contractor who built many buildings in Mineral Wells, including the Mineral Wells High School (1914) and the third First Baptist Church. It is a good example of Neo-classical architecture.
Date: April 4, 1976

[Confiscated Whiskey Stills]

Description: Nick Chandler & Gib Abernathy, officials of the government, have detected (and presumably are about to destroy) illegal whiskey distilling apparatus confiscated during the Great Depression of the 1930's, when Prohibition was regnant. The lack of a "Thumper" barrel between the distilling apparatus and the worm suggests that these "Stills" were probably amateur operations. Abernathy was the Palo Pinto County Sheriff at the time, and also the father of Bill Ray Abernathy.
Date: unknown

[First State Bank & Trust]

Description: Shown here is an interior view of the First State Bank & Trust Company, later known as the State National Bank, located at 102 East Hubbard. This bank was organized in 1906, and it opened on April 17, 1906. It became the State National Bank in 1925. The First National Bank was merged with the State National Bank in 1931. The official name of the institution became First National Bank in 1955. At the desk is H. N. Frost, then president. Standing is W. I. Smith, Vice-President & cashier. The teller is unidentified. The photograph was taken 1921. Note the cuspidors in each corner. It is featured in "Time Was in Mineral Wells" on page 147.
Date: unknown

[First State Bank and The Gentlemen's Closet]

Description: This photograph has been tentatively dated to the 1980's. Notice the mailbox at the corner--a rarity in Mineral Wells at the present [2013] time. The street appears to be devoid of markings. The picture shows the First State Bank, which began business at the southwest corner of the 100 block of East Hubbard with a drive-in teller and parking lot at the back of the bank. The First State Bank president was Leon Cowan; vice-presidents were Tony Street and Leon Groves. The First State Bank occupied the northeast corner of N. Oak Avenue and E. Hubbard Streets after The City National Bank (now First Financial Bank) moved from here to its current [2008] location at 1900 W. Hubbard Street. First State Bank is now [2008] located at 101 SE 1st Avenue. The building now [2013] houses the offices for the Mineral Wells Hospice. The Gentleman's Closet, next door, was a man's haberdashery. It was a remodeled store that had been occupied by a number of previous businesses. It is presently [2013] vacant.
Date: 1989?

[Barber Lake]

Description: Many property owners in early Mineral Wells had their own water wells, but the city pumped water to a small standpipe on East Mountain for distribution to the city. When the wells became insufficient to supply the city's needs, Barber Lake was built in the Barber Addition--in the northeast part of town--as Mineral Wells' first city water supply lake. Around 1905, Cicero Smith and Ed Dismuke built a dam across Pollard Creek west of the city to form Lake Pinto, the city's next water supply. Barber Lake, the City's first municipal water supply, can still be found southeast of Cullen Grimes School (built in 1920 at 1800 NE 1st. Avenue as Barber School, the name was changed to Cullen Grimes in honor of a long-time principal when it was enlarged in 1942.)
Date: 1900?

Cafe Royal

Description: The caption on the photograph identifies it as the Cafe Royal. This building that houses it, on the NW corner of NW 1st Avenue and 3rd Streets, was known as the W.E. Mayes Building. Upstairs rooms were rented under the name of the "Carlsbad Hotel" in recognition of the nearby Carlsbad Drinking Pavilion at the opposite (or NE) corner of the block: 700 NW 2nd Avenue. (The first edition of "Time Was in Mineral Wells", page 105, identifies it as the Wells Hotel.)
Date: 1900?

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?