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Posts posted by 57Tbird

  1. T-Bird is this the wreck in question? I think this is the one that there were a couple of spectator fatalities.

    Nope! It was the one where Blackie Lothringer went over the wall between turn 1 and turn 2. He landed in the area between the concession stand and south stands near the west entrance gate. Here is a Chronicle report on the accident. Front page and other page.

    Sparky, Was your mom one of the ladies named, at the concession stand, in the Chronicle article?

  2. Hi 57Tbird. So glad to be able to talk with you and know that you are still alive. I went to South Main elementary until the school bus changed routes and then I went to McGregor. I attended Johnston Jr. High School and then San Jacinto High School. I was in the class of l953. Where did you attend school?

    I went to Sutton, Fannin, Poe El, Lanier, Lamar '53. My wife went to MacGregor, Johnston, and San Jac '55.

  3. I do have pictures I can post but I will have to have my son show me how to do that. I just discovered that my sister had posted #119 on 5-10-2006, as member No. 2116. What a pleasant discovery. She passed away on July 3, 2006, one day shy of her 73rd. birthday on July 4th.. When we were little she always thought the July 4th. celebrations were for her birthday. I really don't know what kind of posts to do so I will just ramble on about living in the park. Some one said they remembered the neon towers at the park entrance. They did look like giant toothbrushes from a distance. They were hollow inside and filled with spiders, webs, and a lot of wiring. Before the school bus was allowed to pick us up inside the park grounds, we would have to catch the bus in front of the park. We would take cover in the towers if it was raining. When my dad found out we were doing this, he got the buses to come into the park and pick us up by our frozen custard stand. The first job I can remember having was blowing us ballons for the dart joint. I blew them up by mouth, tied them and them put them in a big ballon box. If you ever try this game at a carnival throw the dart up so it will come down to hit the ballon. It works better than a hard straight throw. I worked in the front food stand until I was old enough to run the snow cone, cotton candy, and popcorn stand by myself. I still roll cotton candy cones if I am holding a dollor bill. To change the subject, my sister had mentioned Playmore that was in downtown Houston. It had bumper cars, a penny arcade, my dads food stand, some joints, and of course the man who was buried alive. That was my "Uncle Homer". He was not really a blood uncle, but was one of the people that came in off the road when my family did. Coming in off the road meant that you had left the sawdust trail and settled down. The saw dust trail meant that you traveled with a carnival or a circus which we had done. If anyone is interested I can post some stuff about that. Uncle Homer not only was buried alive, he also managed to make the board cut-outs that my mom used in the mug joint. The favorite cut-out of course was the jail. When I married and moved away from the Park, I still could hear the sounds at night when I went to bed. My father had the concessions at Arrowhead which was on Old Spanish Trail. The monorail was also on OST.. As a matter of fact the year my father passed away he had the concessions at almost all of the public places in Houston. The Colliseum, The Music Hall, The Auditorium, The Zoo, Herman Park, Playland Park, and was bidding on the Astrodome when it was built. Like I said I am just typing what comes to mind. Let me know if you like it. Thanks again for the site. Sparky

    I had forgotten about the Pla-Mor arcade downtown until you mentioned it. It was on Dallas, between Main and Fannin, across from where Sakowitz would eventually be built. I went there many times as a youngster in the mid-40's. As I remember, it was open-air, on the ground floor of some type of structure that may have been a parking garage.

    Where did you go to school while living at Playland? You and I are the same age. I am the "gentleman" you mentioned in your first post who was buying a Coke when that horrible accident occurred at Playland in 1959.

  4. OK... I'm going to put in my $.02 worth here. I think I remember the End of Main from the late 40's-early 50's being where Sonny Look's would eventually be located. I believe that would be at the NW corner of S. Main and the present Loop 610. I'm not positive, but reasonably sure. It was certainly not at the end of Main then, but probably was when it was originally constructed.

  5. Hello to all my preservationist friends, please help me support David Welling and his book "Cinema Houston". David has worked very hard to keep the soul of the movie business in Houston alive through this wonderful book. His efforts will insure a fun part of Houston's history will survive. Mention your favorite Houston preservation group when you purchase a book and I will throw in a black and white poster of vintage Houston. Company discounts available on large orders! This book is the perfect Christmas item, priced at $45.00 it is an affordable way to show support of our historical community....

    TO READ UP ON THE BOOK VISIT ITS WEBSITE: http://www.cinemahouston.info/index.htm

    Story Sloane

    • Like 1
  6. For those who might be interested. I received this notice today...

    Hey all,

    Just a note to remind everyone that at 12:30 on Saturday, November 3rd, Houston Arts and Media will be having a:

    Houston History

    Road Rally!

    All the information can all be found here - http://www.houstonartsandmedia.org/news.htm - but I'll summarize...

    Gather your friends and your road maps and come compete against other teams to solve clever clues that will lead you to 15 or so historic Houston locations in the inner loop. You'll have to take a picture to prove you found it and include one of your teammates to prove you were actually there.

    We start at and return to the Shady Tavern, 1206 W 20th St, itself a local landmark since 1939, where we'll be serving free food, and giving away prizes.

    You can register your team online early for $25 (or $20 if you get yourself a HAM membership - recommended... ;) or $30 ($25 - ditto) on Rally Day. That's a per team price, and with up to 5 people per team, that's a real bargain for a day of fun!

    So, grab your friends and come meet us at the Shady at 12:30 on Saturday November 3rd! Visit http://www.houstonartsandmedia.org/news.htm to sign up!



  7. This is a letter that Story Sloane, owner of Sloane's Gallery, wrote to the Chronicle recently. Some of you may have seen it. He gave me permission to post it here. Interesting! I think it expresses the concerns of many on this forum.

    Get History Museum

    With the city's 171st birthday close at hand, everyone's busy planning events to mark the occasion. We will be 171, but drive around town and you'd think the city was constructed in the 1980s.

    There has been much talk about preserving Houston's architectural history. Concerned citizens form activist groups and launch Web sites and with all the media attention, you might think something tangible was being done. But still the wrecking ball bounces! Perhaps the preservation of our great city's past is not always brick and mortar. How many Houstonians have shoeboxes full of local history that are headed for the trash bins?

    While working on a book in the '80s about Houston's history, I was given access to several historical archives whose wealth of history was amazing. I was also disgusted by how little of that treasure trove was accessible to the public. And unfortunately, the contents housed in the Julia Ideson library have suffered from more than six decades of political and philanthropical neglect. One good storm could cause catastrophic damage to its 3 million photographs and negatives. When these visual records of our demolished historical buildings are lost, all that will remain will be fading memories.

    The city needs a museum of its history and culture in order to educate young Houstonians to appreciate the city's fantastic history. We need a place to exhibit some of those "shoebox memories" and lighten the load for the underfunded and understaffed preservation groups. We need a place where all can go to be enlightened by the remarkable accomplishments of this great city: in short, a museum of Houston's history and culture. Where is Jesse Jones when we need him?



  8. Were there others than the one near Stella Link and Bellaire near the railroad tracks in the later 50ss?

    Are you saying that Howard Johnson's was the first ice cream shop in Houston? I don't think so. I remember the Rettig's shops from the early 40's. There was one on the SE corner of Main and Elgin, near where I lived at that time. The Rettig's factory was near downtown, not far from the YMCA. They may have existed before that, but that's the earliest I remember.

  9. Links from live.com aren't accepted in the forum software because they only work if you are using Microsoft Internet Explorer. A lot of members use Macs, Linux, Firefox, etc., so it makes sense not to have links they can't see.

    Oh. Thanks.

  10. In a recent post, I made a reference to a maps.live.com link to show a Houston building location. I got an error message that said I had used a link that was not allowed on HAIF, and my reply would not post. I removed the link and there was no further problem. I, and others, have used links to this site before with no problem. What is the criteria here for links? Has this topic been covered before?

  11. Cool, thanks 57Tbird!

    6 was the Post/Shell Bldg/Magnolia Hotel. The dark building at the bottom was the Rossonian.

    7 I think is Texaco

    8 Medical Arts

    9 Cottton Exchange?

    10 Petroleum Building

    13 Union Station

    21 I believe was the Montrose Apartments

    I think #13 is a little too far to the west to be Union Station, if you count the blocks from Fannin. Union Station is on Crawford. The Church of the Annunciation, also on Crawford, is directly south across Texas from Union Station, so US would be partially hidden by the church... if that's the church. OTOH, #15 may be too far to the east to be on Crawford. It looks like there is a steeple there, so that's why I thought it might be the COTA. Also, Union Station is only four stories high, and #13 looks more than that. Opinions, please?

    A maps.live.com link won't work here. If you use IE, go to the maps.live.com site and Birds-Eye View the area to the South of Minute-Maid Park. You can see the location relation between the old Union Station and Church of the Annunciation.

    Re #21... Earlydays said he and his wife remembered that structure as a very elegant 1920

  12. Wow, fantastic photo!

    Would someone mind posting an editing version of this photo showing the various landmarks than can be identified? That would be really cool. I always have a hard time figuring out what's what on these aerial photos... :wacko:

    I thought I would take a stab at adding names that I know and some I think I know. With the original poster's (Earlydays) permission, and with his help on some of the names, I am putting it up again with names at the bottom of the photo. I guess I am limited to the file size that's shown here, because the one I uploaded was about 1 MB. and you could zoom in for more detail than the final zoom allowance here shows. The numbers on the photo are small because I didn't want them to override the picture. Hope you can read them OK.

    Please help out with names that have question marks and with any other buildings you might know that aren't numbered. I will add them.


  13. Great menu, SpaceAge!

    I swear someone posted a photo or post card of the restaurant with the two Indians on the roof. Maybe it was Subdude, but I haven't seen him posting recently.

    Tbird, are you out there, Buddy?

    I'm here, but with no positive answer. Main thing I remember is the flickering, neon campfire at night. I thought the Indians' features were outlined with neon lighting too, but that wouldn't have been practical with a 3-dimensional figure like yours. In the back of my mind, I was thinking a flat, plywood version, but I really can't be sure. Subdude's postcard didn't show the Indians on top. Must not have been there then. I'm lookin' and askin' around. Your Indian is in pretty good condition, if he's been sitting outside for some 50 years.

  14. Gateway Skate was a huge roller rink in the late 50s. The floors were polished oak which is why they wouldn't let you bring your metal skates. Giant mirrored ball which was lit during the "All Skate".

    I think it was wishful thinking about the proximity to Kelly's, but it made me think about where all the addresses in Houston are based - Number 1 Main Street, the M&M Building. The first building in the US that was accessible from trains, boats, cars, horseback, and air. The 8510 S. Main address on the Gateway postcard is further from M&M than the 3512 address on the Kelly's card (where do you guys find this stuff?!) Sometimes knowing this helps with placing addresses in Houston. I remember meeting the wife of the Kelly's owner at one of the Medical Center hospitals in the late 50s - he was dying. I'm not sure how long after that the three locations had disappeared. Outrageous good steaks!

    "I used to know a guy who told me that swimming pools in Houston have a chemical added to the water that turns a dark purple color whenever someone urinates. " My chemical would make their suits dissolve.

    Most kids couldn't afford the skates that were used on the wood floors of the roller rinks, so they were rented as were ice skates at the ice skating rinks. The roller skates had four wide hard rubber or urethane wheels on them.

    I find ads in my wife's and my old high school and college yearbooks. Lots of advertising in the back of those. That's where I found the Kelley's ad I posted earlier.

  15. Ding, Ding, Ding! I think we have a winner! EspersonBuilding says Contemporary Learning Center, Live Local shows this for the CLC:

    Looks like a positive ID to me!

    By Jove! I think you got it! Looks like I was wrong when I said I didn't think it was the old Johnston Jr High. I should have investigated further. Thanks to all who took the time to look... especially EspersonBuildings and marmer. Case closed!

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