Boyce Ditto Public Library - Browse

ABOUT BROWSE FEED

[The Burning of the Crazy Flats]

Description: The "Crazy Flats" drinking pavilion, with rooms for rent, replaced a two-story Crazy Water drinking pavilion in 1909. The first Crazy Hotel was built in 1912, and an annex was added to it in 1914. A fire in the Drug Store of the "Crazy Flats" (SE corner of the Crazy Flats building) on March 15, 1925, destroyed the entire Crazy block. The "New", completely rebuilt, Crazy Hotel was enlarged to cover the entire block. It opened in 1927, and replaced all of the burned buildings. The new building was promoted as fireproof, since it was built with solid cement walls and ceilings. The former "new Crazy Hotel" had a colorful past that included a daily radio show originating in its Lobby and broadcast nationally over TQN (the Texas Quality Network). It had survived the Great Depression of the 'thirties, World War I, the Korean "Police Action", and the Viet Nam War.
Date: March 15, 1925
Item Type: Photograph

"Where the Famous Crystals Are Made"

Description: This is a photograph of a building with a sign that says, "Famous Mineral Wells Crystal Plant." There is a hill, covered in trees, behind the building. Writing at the bottom of the image reads: "Where Famous Crystals Are Made." Ed Dismuke, a druggist from Waco, came to Mineral Wells for his health after his family physician told him he only had a "short time" to live. After miraculously regaining his health, which he credited to the mineral waters of his new hometown, he sold water by the drink at the Damron Hotel, later opening his own company, The Famous Water Company. He also opened The Famous Mineral Crystal Plant on the east side of Lake Pinto in partnership with local banker Cicero Smith. The two also organized The Mineral Wells Lakewood Park Scenic Railway with its two gasoline-powered "dinky cars" named "Esther" and "Susie" after Smith's daughters. This is a picture of the plant where Famous Crystals, labeled "Pronto Lax" were made. Dismuke had outlived the doctors who had told him he only had a short time to live when he died at the age of ninety-four.
Date: 1905?
Item Type: Photograph

[The Yeager Building]

Description: A stone building named "Yeager Block" on the corner of NE 1st Avenue and NE 1st Street is shown here. (NE 1st is the street shown in the picture. Dr. Yeager lived two blocks east--up that street--of the drugstore). Once home of (what was known to some as)"The Lion Drugstore", it had a metal statue of a lion mounted on its roof. The statue of the lion was removed but not the exact date of its removal is not sure. It is not visible in a photo dated 1925 of the West Texas Chamber of Commerce Convention. At the time of this photograph, (a handwritten note on the back of the photograph gives the date as 1993), it was housing the Baker Medical Supply Company at the time. A retail store in the left of the photograph is named "The Rural Route."
Date: 1993
Item Type: Photograph

Crazy Sign Across The 100 Block of Hubbard Street

Description: This picture shows a post-card of the sign. It also represents the original version of the picture of the Crazy Sign. A colorized version, by A. F. Weaver, may be found under the title [Crazy Sign]. It was constructed in 1933 over East Hubbard Street, (later to become part of the Bankhead Highway--later still, US Highway 180) in the center of Mineral Wells. It was quite a landmark as it was one of only two signs allowed by by the Texas Department of Transportation to span a highway maintained by the state agency. The sign was torn down on December 24, 1958. The choice of Christmas Eve was made, it was declared, because there would be a minimum of traffic on that day. The sign was later salvaged for scrap. . Information about the sign was taken, for the most part, from A.F. Weaver's "Time Was..." on page 30.
Date: 1933?
Item Type: Photograph

Young Motor Co.

Description: A text on the photograph identifies it as "May 1952-Grand Opening after fire of 1951,"/ "316 E. Hubbard Street," /"Photo by A. F. Weaver." This business was the local General Motors dealership and garage. It became Barnett-Young in late 1960's and in 1984 after Cecil Young's death it was Barnett Motor Co. The building is adjacent to the Baker Hotel parking garage, and, in 2007, it houses the H & H Tire Company.
Date: May 1952
Creator: Weaver, A. F.
Item Type: Photograph

First Presbyterian Church in 1896

Description: Handwritten notes on this old newspaper clipping indicate that it was given by M. J. Graham to A. F. Weaver, and correctly reports that the church structure burned August 25, 1908. The article erroneously states that it burned July 4, 1914. The article appears to have been published in the Mineral Wells Index. The caption reads: "Crowd attends dedication of the wooden church as it nears completion in the summer of 1896, when the edifice was dedicated to the Lord and mankind. On July 4th, 1914, the church was destroyed by one of the most disastrous fires in the history of Mineral Wells, when 34 residences and hotels, for two blocks east and west, and four blocks north--from Hubbard St. to NW 4th Street--burned. Every place from Hubbard north to 4th Street except the Tygrett home. "The present church was constructed some two years after the wooden church burned, on the same site--the corner NW 2nd Street and NW 4th Avenue. Perhaps some of the youngsters in the picture are living in the community today [2013]. Picture made available by M. J. Graham from his file of papers and pictures on the history of Presbyterianism in this community. "Until the present domed brick church was completed, the Presbyterians held Sunday School and church on the lower floor of the Odd Fellow Building in the 200 block on North Oak." The domed brick church mentioned in the article was built in 1909, (at a cost of $15,000, according to the El Paso Morning Times of 1909) and was replaced by a third church at this location in the 1980's due to structural deterioration. Please note: The picture in this article has been slightly cropped from it's original form, which is also in the A. F. Weaver Collection with the title [First ...
Date: unknown
Item Type: Clipping

[The First Motorcycle in Mineral Wells]

Description: A caption, taken from "Time Was..." by A. F. Weaver, on page 116 states: "Pictured in 1908 is Frank Richards, owner of the first motorcycle bought in Mineral Wells. D. C. Harris owned the second motorcycle." Frank Richards was the manager of the Star Well during Mineral Wells' heyday as a popular health spa, and the boy on the motorbike with him has been identified as his son, Robert Frank Richards. D. C. Harris was the postmaster, and served as Mayor of the city at one time.
Date: 1908
Item Type: Photograph

First National Bank

Description: The first National Bank, at the southeast corner of Oak Avenue and Hubbard Street in Mineral Wells, was originally located in the Oxford Hotel. The Lynch Building and Plaza were built on the site of the hotel, commemorating the location of the discovery of mineral water with "miracle healing powers" by a well drilled here by James A. Lynch in 1879, after the Oxford burned in 1983.
Date: 1970?
Item Type: Photograph

[The First Crazy Hotel and Crazy Flats]

Description: A view of the Crazy Flats and first Crazy Hotel, as seen from East Mountain, is shown here. The Crazy Flats, at the right middle of the picture, was the second Crazy Drinking Pavilion--also with Rooms for Rent--was built in 1909. One feature of the Flats was "Peacock Alley", where the men gathered on Sundays to watch the ladies parade and show off the latest fashions in female gear. The first Crazy Hotel is to the left rear of the Flats; the first section of the Hotel, on the right, was built in 1912, and the second section, on the left, to its left, was built in 1914 and connected to the first with a common lobby. The Crazy Bath house adjoined Crazy Flats on the left, and a drugstore was located in the left corner of the Bath house building. A fire, starting in the drugstore on March 15, 1925, burned the entire block, sparing only the small building housing the first Crazy Pavilion (the right rear of the Flats.) The current (second) Crazy Hotel opened in 1927, and replaced all of the former businesses in this block.
Date: 1920?
Item Type: Photograph

[Five Women on a Bridge]

Description: The bridge shown here once spanned a stream in downtown Mineral Wells. It was channelized along the northbound Weatherford, Mineral Wells and Northwestern Railroad. The same women may be seen in the photograph "Women in Truck."
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph

[Games at Elmhurst Park]

Description: A girls' basketball game is being played at Elmhurst Park, around 1910. Ladies in the picture are wearing ladies' basketball uniforms of the day. Ladies at the time played on a half-court, and the game was strictly a no-contact sport. The game was re-started with a jump ball after each score, tie-ball, or any infraction of the rules. There were six players on each "side", three "offense", and three defenders. This picture may be found on page 89 of "Time Was in Mineral Wells...", Second Edition, by A. F. Weaver.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph

[Four Golfers at Mineral Wells Country Club - 1930's]

Description: Four unidentified men in golfing knickers (apparently from the early 1930's, to judge by their dress) stand in front of, and across the lake from the original Holiday Hills Country Club house. They are putting on what is now the Number 12 green.
Date: 1930?
Item Type: Photograph

[A Guest Room in the Baker Hotel]

Description: This photograph shows a guest room in the Baker Hotel, when it was operating. Please note the corner sofa, shag carpet, round coffee-table. Please note also the smoking stand at one end of the sofa--an amenity not encountered in modern hotel rooms. The decor suggests the late 1950's or the early 1960's. It is said that the door of the room had an apparatus in it that automatically turned off the lights when the key was turned.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph

[J. W. (Doon) Deberry and His Well machine]

Description: Drilling of the Vichy Well was done by J.W. "Doon" Deberry in the 600 block of North Oak Street. The Vichy Well Natatorium, later the Beach, and still later the Standard Well, was located across N. Oak Avenue from the Hexagon House Hotel, which can be seen at the right edge of the photograph. The wooden building on the left, with the false arcades, has not yet been identified. The Standard Pavilion boasted a variety of attractions including a swimming pool, movie theater, bowling alley, and dance floor. It was torn down during World War II, and replaced by a USO Canteen to serve the soldiers training at local Camp Wolters. At the end of the War, the USO was given to the City and utilized as a Community Center and later Senior Center.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph

[The Interior of a Grocery Store]

Description: A legend on the back of the photograph reads: "D.M. Howard Grocery Simon Gilbert on Left Great Uncle of Estes Gilbert" A different hand has written "2nd is D. M. Howard himself" Please notice the moustaches on nearly all the gentlemen pictured. Please notice also that all of the men but two are wearing jackets. The store shows no sign of electric lighting. There may be a gas fixture at the left edge of the picture, which, along with the appearance of the men, may serve to indicate that the photograph was taken in the early part of the twentieth century, but definite information on this issue is lacking. The picture is featured in "Time Once was in Mineral Wells" on page 123.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph

[In Front of the Schoolhouse, ca. 1885]

Description: The back of this photograph shows three notes: 1: "Taken in front of school house about 1885." (This photograph appears to be of the students and teachers of Mineral Wells' first public school, the "Little Rock Schoolhouse," built in 1884.) 2: "Donated by James H. Perry", and 3: "Some are dead. Some are married, and we are all scattered, never to meet on earth again."
Date: 1885
Item Type: Photograph

[Lake Mineral Wells, 4 of 4: The Spillway]

Description: Shown here is the lower end of the spillway from Lake Mineral Wells after the flood in March 1976. The dam is barely visible at the upper end of the spillway in the middle of the picture. The road directly below the dam is under water, and is not visible in any other pictures of this flood. It suffered such severe damage that it had to be rebuilt.
Date: April 1976
Item Type: Photograph

[The Ladies Civic League Fountain]

Description: The Ladies Civic League Fountain, shown in this photograph, is now [2009] located in the "Towne Common" (behind the Mineral Wells Office Supply), surrounded by "Memorial Bricks." It was originally located at the corner of SE 2nd Street and SE 1st Avenue as a watering trough for horses. It was moved in 1911 to the back part of the Gibson Well Park in the 700 block NW 2nd Avenue. (It may have been moved to facilitate the flow of the expected traffic around "the old Post Office", construction of which started in May the following year, 1912.) The fountain was relocated in October of 1972 (the time of the photograph) to West City Park on W. Hubbard Street (Highway 180 W), and placed at its present location in 2007.
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph

[Ladies Holding Flowers]

Description: This photograph presents a mystery. Ten ladies, dressed in 1920's-style fashion, stand on the steps of the Baker Hotel, holding bouquets of chrysanthemums; one lady has roses; a basket of flowers with a tulle ribbon stands in foreground. The occasion for this display is entirely unknown. A legend on back reads: "For Q from L Mrs Joe Young." The identities of the people mentioned are entirely unknown.
Date: unknown
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

[Leon Cross, Shoe Shine Boy in 1975]

Description: Leon Cross was the only "shine boy" left in Mineral Wells in 1975. He worked in the first Crazy Hotel just before it burned; and has been with the Crazy Hotel ever since, working in different departments of the Hotel. He is the Shine Boy today [2003] in the Crazy Barber Shop, located in the Crazy Hotel. This photograph appears in A.F. Weaver's book "Time Was in Mineral Wells."
Date: unknown
Item Type: Photograph

Looking south on Mesquite Street

Description: A street scene, identified as Mesquite Street (now NE 1st Avenue)and looking south, taken at the turn of the twentieth century, shows businesses that antedate the coming of the automobile. On the right, in the middle of the picture, the Yeager Building is shown with a stone lion mounted on its roof. Many historians now refer to this building as the Lion Drug Store. However, current Yeager descendants now living in Mineral Wells do not remember the store as ever being named anything but The Yeager Drug Store. The third building on the left (with the spire on top) was the Star Well whose manager, Frank Richards was an active participant in Mineral Wells' early business and social activities. At the end of the street is Mineral Wells depot built in 1902. Absence of the "Dinky Car" tracks in the middle of the street indicates that the picture was taken prior to the building of the Mineral Wells Lakewood Park Scenic Railway in 1905.
Date: 1902-05?
Item Type: Photograph

Lithia Wells

Description: The Lithia Wells and Drinking Pavilion was located on the southwest corner of the "Crazy Block." (400 NW 1st Avenue, the current [2008]location of the Crazy Retirement Home). The second Crazy Well Pavilion is the large building the upper left of the photograph. Note the three burros next to the horse. Riding burros up a trail on East Mountain was a popular tourist pastime, in addition to drinking and bathing in the mineral waters. The Mineral Wells Public Library was located in the Lithia Pavilion at one time. See also the preceding picture.
Date: 1908?
Item Type: Photograph