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Posts posted by billyf

  1. 14 hours ago, Specwriter said:

    Ah, the freeze of 1983; that's probably a subject that deserves its own thread. It got so cold the regulator on our gas meter froze (apparently a bit of moisture was in it) and stopped the natural gas from flowing into our house and, of course, the furnace. My father and I constructed a tent over the meter from a sleeping bag and put a 100 watt light bulb in a work light and placed it under the "tent." The set-up worked and the meter thawed.

    Yes it does, same with the 1989 freeze which was shorter.

    I wonder how many people that happened to them because the same thing happened to our next door neighbor during that freeze. They had just got a new furnace with an electronic igniter which was fairly new at the time. They kept hearing it trying to start and noticed it was getting colder in the house. They checked the stove a saw there was no gas and called Entex. The technician determined the vent on the regulator had froze and he used a hair dryer I believe to thaw it. Our pipes ended up freezing that night and we had to use a hair dryer the next day to unthaw them. It stayed below freezing day and night for almost a week! Dripping the faucetsdid no good, same with the 1989 freeze. In that one we had a pipe burst in the attic.

  2. On 5/21/2019 at 3:55 AM, Holak said:

    This is too cool! I also went to Inez Carrol from 1979-1984 or 1985. I grew up on Mosher Lane, just South of Halls Bayou. 

    I learned last month that they demolished the house I grew up in.

    I was saddened to hear that they demolished the school years ago. I've got a lot of memories from Inez Carrol.

    - Derek J Holak

    Unfortunately that area flooded bad in 2001 and it wasn't worth the money to repair as they had already built a new school off Gulf Bank and were using the old building for a magnet school. They area was hit really hard during Harvey as well. That might also be why your house got demolished.

  3. On 5/17/2019 at 9:13 AM, IronTiger said:

    The Wolfe Nursery at Shepherd and North Freeway was there in 1982, with 8223 North Shepherd being listed for "Wolfe Garden-Land Nursery", with the building (and the address, though changed to North Freeway later) is the same and operating as Cash America Pawn today.

    Thanks for confirming this. I remember going to Wolfe and Palms Nursery frequently with my parents as a little kid in the late 70s to early 80s. I knew it was in this area as I would see the post office when we would leave. When I met up with Firebird downtown a couple of years ago to do some research, he was puzzled how I remembered that Wolfe Nursery.

    I still remember the layout, look and smell of Palms. I think we went there more often. I don't remember much about Wolfe's except the location. My parents were all into fixing up our yard as they had just bought the house in 1976. Several freezes came through and killed off the things they planted. The freeze of December 1983 was the final straw and they just let the yard go for several years other than mowing and edging.

  4. Just saw there have been more replies to this. As shown on one of the videos, the 1992 outbreak also caused some damage to some stores, homes and apartments from Clay Road and Highway 6 before tracking north and diminishing near 1960 and 249. One of the 1983 tornados also moved through this area.


    The 1992 outbreak was worst in terms of damage (and intensity), but the 1983 outbreak spawned more tornados in SE Texas. It has practically been forgotten since most of the tornados were north of the Houston Metro area. Also there was just less news back then and few people owned VCR's. In fact I haven't been able to find a single video on it. Also it happened during the early morning hours when most people were sleeping and news crews were off. We got little from the November 1992 outbreak in the Aldine area so while I remember the event it wasn't too relevant to me. Just like people that didn't get anything from the 1983 outbreak tend to feel the same way.


    One thing is for sure and that is that is we are overdo for another outbreak!





  5. I wouldn't have any issue with buying a house where there was a murder as long as all traces of the event were removed.


    There are several houses throughout the city where people were once murdered. Contrary to popular belief a seller does NOT have to disclose this unless it was caused by the condition of the home. Natural causes, murder, suicide, death by AIDS or an accident not related to the condition of the home does not have to be disclosed. It would be a good idea to disclose it however especially if it was within the last 5 years. There have been cases where I buyer was able to terminate a contract due to a murder not being disclosed. My guess with most of these home is the buyers were told, but didn't care. Usually only spiritual people care about that kind of thing. Selling a house where a murder happened would probably take longer, but eventually you will find someone that doesn't care.

  6. I was just a child at the time, but I remember the oil crash of 1986 very well. Whole subdivisions in some areas practically became ghost towns as people were packing up and moving out of Houston. The population still grew from 1980 to 1990, but it slowed substantially. While I have no proof they were related; the Greenspoint area seemed to rapidly decline around this time. In fact crime in general rose rapidly in the late 80s in the Houston area. Once great, well established areas never recovered.  Again I don't know if this was the result of the oil crash, but it happened around the same time. My dad did security for Brown and Root and later Allied Industries from the late 70s until 1987. He was laid off from both due to cuts around this time.


    I've been hearing a lot about how great the economy is in Houston. It was great in the 70s too, but that all changed in the 80s. Don't ever think we are immune from this happening again.

  7. Target is a chick store. No tools, no hardware, no automotive, no garden shop, and no hunting or sporting goods! But if you want color coordinated bath mats, towels and soap dishes,Target is the place to go.


    There used to be one on the other side of the freeway from Greenspoint mall. I remember going there with my parents several times back in the 80s. Target was a lot like K-mart back then from what I can remember. They had a pretty large electronics section and were big on video games. We bought a TV and a VCR from that store. I don't remember too much more about it except there was a lot of red (much like today). It seems like they became more of a white woman's store in the 2000s.  They were smart to set themselves apart from Walmart and Kmart rather than trying to directly compete with them.

  8. When I was a little kid I got into some trouble at the U-tote-um off Gulf Bank on the northside. My mom and I used to always walk there when we needed something. One day while she was checking out I got this idea to open the tap on the barrels that they kept the beer on ice. Rather than turning it back off I left it on. Why? I have no idea and still feel bad about it to this day even though I was only 3 or 4 years old. I remember leaving and the Vietnamese lady (all that every worked there) giving me a friend smile. There is no telling how long that water pored out on to the floor before she noticed. Well I did it a second time and again I have no idea why. The next time we went in there my mom got a ear full from the lady. Fast forward a few years my mom called and complained to the main office about something that happened with one of the clerks. They brought up the indecent about the barrels :unsure:. My mom never told my dad and when he found out he lectured me about it (3 or so years later). Of course I had already knew better not to do something like that.

    I have a lot of memories of U-tote-um and Circle K. I liked it as Circle K better. They had more drink choices and a video section we used to rent movies from. They also had a nicer, more diverse group of employees.

  9. Cool. Unfortunately I moved to the west side after the construction began and don't remember too much about what was there before. I remember driving through there just before the expansion began. It looked like NYC back in the 1970s with graffiti everywhere. US 290 is about to look the same way. TDOT has already bought several properties near 290 and Beltway 8 for Hempstead Tollway and 290 expansion. All of the fast food restaurants near Senate are closed. http://www.h-gac.com/taq/commitees/TPC/2009/11-nov/docs/ITEM%2011%20--%20BG%20Attachment%20Prop%2012%20Recommended%20List.pdf

  10. One of them is going to be right down the street from me off Hwy 6 and Little York! I hear there is also going to be one off US 59.

    I grew up in the Aldine area near I-45 and W Gulf Bank. There was a 7-11 at one time at Gulf Bank and I-45 (later became a Stop N Go). There were two U-tote-M's which latter became Circle K on Gulf Bank as well. One was at the corner of Gulf Bank and Airline. The other was at the corner of Gulf Bank and Cheswick (near Sweetwater). There was another one near West Rd if I'm not mistake. There was also a Stop N Go at W MT Houston and Sweetwater. I remember a lady worked in there in the 80s with a beard. She finally shaved it at one point. :D There were also Diamond Shamrock's (Sigmor Corner Store) in the area. I think there was just too much competition in the area. The increase in crime in the 90s might have also had something to do with it. There were a couple further south in Houston until a few years ago. I'm not sure why the closed, but I'm guessing for the same reasons. Hopefully they can be profitable this time around.

  11. Its sometimes cheaper to demolish a school rather than renovating it. I have seen school built as late as the 70s demolished for this reason. In the case of Lamar I think HISD should spend any extra money to save the original building. There is too much history with this building not to.

    I found a video of a student filming through the halls of the school. While this may be a newer addition the school looks to be in pretty good shape. Demolishing this part would be a waste.


    BTW if this is the same Lamar we're talking about. I would go to this school any day now over some others north of Downtown.

  12. Are you talking about the Food Town where the Big Texan Lanes bowling alley used to be? If so, I don't think that was ever a Weingartens. Before it was Big Texan Lanes it was a department store called Grants. Closest Weingartens was in Northline Mall, I believe.

    You probably remember better than me. I remember going there and I know it was in that area, but could have been in Northline. HCAD says that 440 W Little York was built is 1970 and was owned by WEINGARTEN RLTY INV #0950. Of course they could have just been leasing the building.

  13. My dad worked for Purolator armored car service back in the mid 70s here in Houston. He used to pick up money for many of the Weingartens stores. One day his partner was shot in the face in an armed robbery. My dad stayed in the back of the truck and reported what was happening. His name was in the paper and he got some award for remaining calm in a crisis. I was just a baby at the time. I only remember going in a Weingartens store once with my mom and our next door neighbor. It was located on Little York and I-45 at 440 W LITTLE YORK RD. Its a Food Town today.

  14. Venture was not a fit for Houston and when Kohl's moved to Houston a lot of people thought it would go the way of Venture. These were mid-west companies trying to break out of their mold. Venture failed, Kohl's succeeded.

    I was thinking about this a few weeks ago. A lot of businesses have done well in other markets, but failed in Houston. Its possible that the very thing that allowed some business to flourish may be hurting others. Houston and Texas for that matter is known for being business friendly. This is in part because of lack of zoning laws and regulation. This creates more competition which can take business away from other stores. I've heard that Stop n Go, 7-11 and Circle K didn't make it in Houston because there are so many convenience stores and gas stations. I mean if you want to open one and have the cash you can just about anywhere. The same with just about every other business. In other places everything is planed out and you have to go through a lot of hassle if you want to move into an area. In some places current business will fight to keep the new guy from coming in and will secede. K-mart and others would rather have stores in areas where they don't have many to complete with them. Kohl's has likely succeeded in Houston because there are really not a lot of stores like them outside of the malls.

    Of course this is just my theory and there are other factors such as demographics. As for Venture they went under completely and you can't blame that on Houston alone. If they thought that a city like Houston would want western themed stuff this proves they had bigger problems lol

  15. I used to walk up to the one up on the North Freeway feeder road , uh North of Little York road . That was in 1977........ Hey, still have a wooden Nickel from a Sambo's I got in a San Louis Obisbo California resturant when I still driving professionally too. I sure do miss the place . I would also visit a location that was in Arlington on West Division too.......... scrubba

    I asked my parents about the Sambo's on the North Freeway and Gulf Bank and they didn't even remember us going there at first. I did some research on that location. That Sambo's opened in 1977 and closed in 1981. Some place called Barry's opened there in 1983, but it didn't last long. The Chinese restaurant opened in 1985.

    My parents claim there was a Sambo's on Mangum Rd neat US 290 they used to go to in the 1970s. I found a couple of buildings that could have defiantly been one.

  16. I moved to the Addicks-Barker area about 6 years ago and have been researching the the history over the past year. I figured there had to be artifacts left behind when the town was moved for the Addicks Reservoir. I was wondering about those buildings on Pine Forest Lane and their history and now I know. Thanks for the link! If you have any more information about this area please share it.

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  17. I remember going to the one on the North Freeway just south of Aldine Bender with my parents when I was a kid back in the 80s. It was in the Northgate Shopping Center next to Sherwin Williams and Firestone. I think there is an Affordable Furniture store there now. I seem to recall there being one in Greenspoint Mall called Oshman's Outlet. Can anyone confirm this?

  18. I remember when it was a Safeway in the 80s. Here is the details on it.


    There was also one at West Rd and Airline Dr that started off as a Safeway and later became a Apple Tree. Today it's a Fiesta.


    There was a Safeway at W Gulf Bank and the North Freeway that became a Drugs for Less and later Archer Mazda. The building was demolished a few years ago. This was where Gary Graham murdered Bobby Grant Lambert in 1981. There was a big controversy about him being executed in 2000.

    More info than you asked for, but I feel like discussing Safeway/Apple Tree stores ;)

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