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Mark F. Barnes

History on the area of Aldine

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At long last I've finished my history of the Aldine Mustangs football team. If you would like a pdf, PM me or send your request to aldinefootball@sbcglobal.net.

I have two versions available. The comprehensive version contains the scores and standings from 1936 to 2006, as well as a timeline of the history of the current Aldine High School/Airline Drive area. It's a large file (6.5 MB), so if you're on dialup and want this, you might want to consider using a file-sharing service such as yousendit.com.

There's also a 1 MB football-only version.

Either of these are free for the asking and I'm only too happy to share the fruits of my research with anyone interested.

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At long last I've finished my history of the Aldine Mustangs football team. If you would like a pdf, PM me or send your request to aldinefootball@sbcglobal.net.

I have two versions available. The comprehensive version contains the scores and standings from 1936 to 2006, as well as a timeline of the history of the current Aldine High School/Airline Drive area. It's a large file (6.5 MB), so if you're on dialup and want this, you might want to consider using a file-sharing service such as yousendit.com.

There's also a 1 MB football-only version.

Either of these are free for the asking and I'm only too happy to share the fruits of my research with anyone interested.

I had a chance to go through some of the stuff today....wow. Excellent job, Mark. Brought back a lot of memories. I graduated in '85, so we've probably crossed paths a few times back in the day. B)

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Guest Marty

If you are a local history buff, you will love this download B)

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I had a chance to go through some of the stuff today....wow. Excellent job, Mark. Brought back a lot of memories. I graduated in '85, so we've probably crossed paths a few times back in the day. B)

Glad you enjoyed it. We probably did cross paths. However, I went to classmates.com and looked up my class and I swear, I had never heard of half the names that appeared as part of the Class of 84. I looked 'em up in my yearbook and apparently they did go to Aldine with me... maybe they are also wondering who the heck I was too.

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What does this mean when you're trying to post a picture on the board?

Sorry, dynamic pages in the %7Boption%7D tags are not allowed

I loaded a map on imagevenue then tried to download it here using the "Insert Image" button. I copied the url and when I hit "Add Reply" that's what I got.

What in the world is a "dynamic page"???

It will let me insert a link, but not an image:

AISD Map

It's a satellite image of the Aldine ISD. I photoshopped in the district boundaries and some other info.

KEY

Red Line - Current Aldine ISD boundary

Blue Line - Aldine High School area (the area covered in my history report)

White Line - Aldine Township

Green Line - Northline Terrace Subdivision (Sections 1-3)

AISD High Schools Past and Present

1 - Aldine High School (1956

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Any ideas as to where the old Higgs township was located? I know where the rest are but have never heard of Higgs, Tx.

Higgs was located on Lee Road at Garners Bayou just south of FM 1960. Today it's part of Bush Intercontinental Airport.

At best, it was probably little more than a few houses. Maybe a store, although I've never heard of one.

An election was held in May 1935 to create Aldine ISD. The polling places were the Marrs School (NOT the future Aldine High, but what is now the Lane Center) in Aldine, Tautenheim's Store in Westfield and Lorino's Store in Brubaker. There was no polling place in Higgs. Not sure why, as I've seen maps from the 1910s and 1920s that show there was a school there. I know the Brubaker school was closed by 1935, so maybe the Higgs school was closed then too, and with no store, there was no place to hold the election.

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Was known for drag racing too right? In early 80's everyone used to always rant about races into late hours. Worth the drive too.

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Here's an update on your list Firebird. I have to say, this is some amazing stuff.

Incomplete list of Aldine ISD Superintendents

If anyone can complete the list, by all means...

S.F. Fenton - was superintendent in 1936 (start and end dates unknown)

J.S. "Johnnie" Elsik - was superintendent in 1954 (start and end dates unknown)

W.W. Thorne - 1958 to 1973

M.O. Campbell - 1973 to 1986

M.B. "Sonny" Donaldson - 1986 to 2001

Nadine Kujawa - 2001 to 2007

Dr. Wanda Bamberg - 2007 to present

If no one knows any other superintendents, I'd just settle for this: What's up with all the initials? LOL! Was that some kind of prerequisite for the job at one time?

Incomplete list of AISD Athletic Directors

If you know of others, please feel free to add...

Swede Lee - ? to 1979

Elliot Lansford - 1979 to 1990

Joe Young - 1990 to 2003

Darryl Wade - 2003 to 2007

Deon Samuel- 2007 to present

Incomplete list of Aldine H.S. principals

Same as above... if you can add to this, by all means have at it...

J.E. Borden - 1936 to ?

M.B. "Sonny" Donaldson - 1974 to 1978

Vernon Lewis - 1978 to 1986

Ralph Norman - 1986 to 1998

Ron Galindo - 1998 to 2003

Cecil Hutson - 2003 to present

Aldine Mustang Head Football Coaches

Arnold Orsak - 1936 to 1946

Bruce Kivell - 1947 to 1953

Billy Cooper - 1954 to 1961

Larry Rice - 1962 to 1965

Hugh Harkridger - 1966 to 1967

Barton Massey - 1968 to 1974

Bill Smith - 1975 to 2004

Bob Jones - 2004 to present

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Here's an update on your list Firebird. I have to say, this is some amazing stuff.

Nadine Kujawa was my principal in elementary school. She and my mother butted heads about something, don't remember what, it's been 30+ years.. :lol:

Anyone know what good ol' Mr Lewis is doing now? I heard he was an assistant superintendent at some point.

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real simple answer as for Acres Home getting split up....Klein ISD needed blacks for the district and Acres Homes was the closest area with the largest concentration of blacks at the time.....their boundaries look like a lollipop...

they were sent to Klein before Klein Forest was built....

still, the move made no sense as eventually, blacks have made their way way past the original boundaries and the same folks who authorized the move have tucked and ran away years ago...

as for Aldine football...it's been told to me that Aldine didn't become a power until a powerful zoning change on West Montgomery that sent alot of Acres Homes to the school in the late 70s or early 80s....I believe that to be true as I knew quite a few folks who lived closer to Booker T. Washington were zoned to Aldine...Greenspoint changed alot also and the apartments became football factories for Aldine as some major talent came out of there.....mix those two elements together you have success (Westfield High)

I can see that happening as Aldine grew into a power from the 80s to the late 90s before fizzling out to what they are now due to people moving to Spring ISD....Westfield's emergence in football has been due to families from AISD and HISD moving out there. Trace the names of alot of kids and they had success in those districts...

my beef with Bill Smith was that he ran that tired offense until he retired and never diversified it......when the demographics changed, he acquired more skill players with speed but he kept on running that damn offense that featured the run and he never passed the ball which hurt alot of kids playing receiver....coaches like that looked great when it works but when the talent declines and the offense fails to change, it looks horrible.

I saw his last game against Port Arthur Memorial.....he blew a 30-point lead

Edited by hbcu

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as for Aldine football...it's been told to me that Aldine didn't become a power until a powerful zoning change on West Montgomery that sent alot of Acres Homes to the school in the late 70s or early 80s....I believe that to be true as I knew quite a few folks who lived closer to Booker T. Washington were zoned to Aldine...Greenspoint changed alot also and the apartments became football factories for Aldine as some major talent came out of there.....mix those two elements together you have success (Westfield High)

That's true, but only to a degree. Aldine had some decent teams in the mid to late 1950s (winning the district title in 1958 and coming close in 1960), but the opening of MacArthur in 1965 took away half their players and the addition of Eisenhower in 1972 took even more. When you look at Aldine's past, some of their worst seasons (1965 to 1968 and 1973 and 1974) came directly after AISD expansion.

Yes, the closing of Carver in 1978 did move several very good Panthers to Aldine, such as Robert Gibson and Charles Benson. Those two players were highly instrumental in Aldine's 1978 district title team. But don't forget, Aldine was one win away from the 1977 crown too, losing the title only in the last game of the season, and Carver was still open that year.

When you look at a map, all AISD high schools split the former Carver attendance zone, so it wasn't just Aldine that got players. Students fome Acres Homes also attend MacArthur and Nimitz as well as nearby Eisenhower.

As for the Greenspoint area, that's in Nimitz's attendance zone. I don't believe any of the people who live in the apartments along Greens Road ever went to Aldine as those apartments were all built after Nimitz opened in 1978. I stand to be corrected, however.

Edited by Firebird65

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As for the Greenspoint area, that's in Nimitz's attendance zone. I don't believe any of the people who live in the apartments along Greens Road ever went to Aldine as those apartments were all built after Nimitz opened in 1978. I stand to be corrected, however.

He may have been referring to the apartments along Airline/Dyna/Goodson.

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Eric Gray, QB of the 1990 National Title team, lived back there...he got shot back there one night

How could Acres Home be zoned to MacArthur and Nimitz? That's a 20 minute ride......simply pitiful how they broke that area to fill a dang quota..

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He may have been referring to the apartments along Airline/Dyna/Goodson.

I taught school at Nimitz in the early eighties. Until around 86 it was pretty much a white suburban school. I remember the buses each morning pulling in with the kids from Acres Homes . The explosion of apartments in Greenspoint had altered the demographics by 1987 and the busing was stopped.

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Eric Gray, QB of the 1990 National Title team, lived back there...he got shot back there one night

How could Acres Home be zoned to MacArthur and Nimitz? That's a 20 minute ride......simply pitiful how they broke that area to fill a dang quota..

According to the 7/11/91 edition of the Houston Chronicle:

"Saturday evening, Gray was riding his bicycle along Goodson Street when a small dark-colored pickup truck sped by.

Detective Anderson said the truck swerved and forced Gray off the street. Someone in the truck then fired several shots at Gray, who was struck in both legs and buttocks.

The truck, which reportedly was occupied by two black males, was last seen heading east on Goodson.

Witnesses told police they heard five or six shots and investigators found several spent 9mm cartridge shells at the scene."

As for Acres Homes students attending MacArthur and Nimitz, if you go to the AISD web site, there are finally attendence zone maps for each high school. And you will see that each has a non-contiguous section of Acres Homes zoned to them. It's absolutely bizarre. I have found stories that indicate it has always been that way since Carver closed in the spring of 1978. Either the Chronicle or rhe Post had a story of one former Carver student's adjustment at MacArthur.

I presume that all stemmed from the 1977 court case against AISD. I know my parents were quite upset my sister was going to have to be bused to a school in Acres Homes against their wishes. We ended up going a private school for three years until I reached senior high and she junior high.

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that's the trouble with the majority black areas....people always want to say we're problems but we're the areas that have been broken up to fill quotas....if left alone and provided the same resources such as other schools in the district, things would be way better...imagine if Carver never had to close and split up and was provided a brand new facility to foster school and neighborhood pride?

When it was all said and one...the bussing was never needed as blacks ended up moving North to Spring anyway and Aldine ISD is majority hispanic now.....

the model concept for blacks was Willowridge High as they were successsful across the board in Fort Bend ISD in the late 80s and early 90s once the area shifted to majority african american...they got too powerful in certain areas and FBISD started bussing kids two miles away to schools way across the district and broke it all up....

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Northline Terrace Primer

The Northline Terrace neighborhood sits on land that was at least partially owned by Tommy Okabayashi. Okabayashi established a farm in either 1932 or 1945 at 351 West Gulf Bank Road. (Still need to find exact date - haven't made it to the Harris County Tax Office yet!)

In 1962, a bridge over Halls Bayou was built, extending W Mount Houston Road from U.S. 75 (the North Freeway was under construction) to Airline Drive, taking over portions of the already existing Mosher Lane. In 1964, another bridge was built over Halls Bayou, joining segments of Hacker Road from West Road to Canino. The Road was renamed Sweetwater Lane.

Sometime in the early 1960s (probably 1962 or 1963), Okabayashi sold part of his land. In 1964, the Oak Glen Building Company started development of Northline Terrace Section 1 on 111 acres of land stretching basically from 1-45 east to Cheswick and from W Gulf Bank Road north to Halls Bayou. The 66-acre Section 2 and 9-acre Section 3 were developed in 1965. Section 2 stretches from Cheswick east to Rockcliff and from W Gulf Bank Road to Halls Bayou, save for the 9100 block of Rockcliff. Section 3 is the 9100 of Rockcliff.

Suburban Homes built most of the homes in Section 1 east of Sweetwater (formerly Hacker) and all of the homes in Section 2. Other companies built the homes west of Sweetwater and several of the homes in Section 3 on Rockcliff (which is why they are different from the others).

Sections 1-3 closed out in 1966 at a total of 186 acres.

Northline Terrace Section 4 started development in 1966 south of W Gulf Bank on 42 acres stretching from W Gulf Bank south to Arrowdale. The 26-acre Section 5 opened in 1968 and went from Arrowdale south to Canino.

Most of the homes in Northline Terrace range in size from roughly 900 square foot to about 1100 square foot. All homes were originally single story homes of ranch style construction. Several have been expanded over the years to up to 1400 square feet and many have added multi-story additions. Homes in Sections 1-3 had open ditches in their front yards and asphalt streets. Over the years, many have had these filled in. Homes in Sections 4-5 have covered drainage and concrete, curbed streets.

All students in Sections 1-3 and those in Section 4 north of W Hartwick attend Aldine ISD schools and Aldine Senior High. Those living south of W Hartwick attend Houston ISD schools and are zoned for Sam Houston High.

While once almost exclusively white lower middle class, the area is now overwhelmingly Hispanic. Many of the original businesses and churches in the area have closed and have become something else, generally supporting a Spanish-speaking clientele.

Only the portion west of Sweetwater is in the city of Houston limits, having been annexed in 1978. The remaining portion is in unincorporated Harris County and falls under the recently formed Airline Improvement District. The neighborhood therfore is not served by city of Houston water, sewer or garbage collection and must rely on private companies for these. Water and sewer is provided by the Sunbelt Freshwater Supply District.

The Airline Improvement District, formed in 2005, supposedly aims to improve basic services such as water, serwer and public safety as these areas have proved a challenge as the neighborhood and surrounding community's demographics have changed.

Another challenge has been increased flooding along Halls Bayou, despite several drainage "improvements" in the area. In 2001, Tropical Storm Allison innundated Northline Terrace, causing many homes along Halls Bayou to flood from Beaver Bend to Rainy River. Even today, each time it rains, the intersections of I-45 at W Gulf Bank and W Mount Houston flood with increased regularity, even ending up in recent national news stories as photos of people wading through these flooded street appeared on CNN.com.

Please feel free to expand this should you have additional information.

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Since you are writing about Aldine History-- I lived on Gulf Bank Road in about 1938 to 1942. I can't remember the address, but it was a buff brick house with a 4 car garage with living quarters above. There was a pond in the rear and was situated on 10 acres of land. Our neighbors were named: Zycheck(sp), Martinka, Wallers, Minor (these are the names I remember) There was a lumber mill across the street and up the road a piece. There was a grocery store and gas station on the corner of Gulf Bank Road and Airline Drive.

When I was about 4 years old, in about 1939 or 1940, I was selected as the mascot to the Aldine High School marching band. I wore a white satin short skit and a long sleeved top with blue epellets and braid. I also wore a tall feathery white hat with a blue plume.

Our name was Roberts. We rented the apartment above the garage to a couple named Jane and Arnold Orsak. He was the coach for Aldine High School from 1936 - 1946 Does anyone remember Gulf Bank Road during this era? pbays

Edited by PBAYS

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Since you are writing about Aldine History-- I lived on Gulf Bank Road in about 1938 to 1942. I can't remember the address, but it was a buff brick house with a 4 car garage with living quarters above. There was a pond in the rear and was situated on 10 acres of land. Our neighbors were named: Zycheck(sp), Martinka, Wallers, Minor (these are the names I remember) There was a lumber mill across the street and up the road a piece. There was a grocery store and gas station on the corner of Gulf Bank Road and Airline Drive.

When I was about 4 years old, in about 1939 or 1940, I was selected as the mascot to the Aldine High School marching band. I wore a white satin short skit and a long sleeved top with blue epellets and braid. I also wore a tall feathery white hat with a blue plume.

Our name was Roberts. We rented the apartment above the garage to a couple named Jane and Arnold Orsak. He was the coach for Aldine High School from 1936 - 1946 Does anyone remember Gulf Bank Road during this era? pbays

pbays, I've responded to the e-mail you sent me about the Aldine Band.

As for your post about Gulf Bank, oddly enough, at the same time you were posting this, I was at the Texas Room library looking up some of the very information you posted.

According to the Kriss Kross Directory of Harris County, the grocery store you mentioned was named the Airline Food Shop. Sometime around 1948 or 1949 it became Hilliards. In around 1956, according to the Harris County Appraisal District, that store was rebuilt and became the Fairview Food Market (Lucky 7), which it remained until the 1990s. The address today is 9000 Airline; however apparently in 1944 Airline was renumbered when it changed from U.S. 75 to L149. Prior to that the address was something like 8410 (sorry, don't have my notes in front of me as I'm writing this).

The gas station was Harvell's Service Station, located right next to the grocery. I believe it was a Texaco station, although the 1944 directory doesn't say (a later one does call it a Texaco).

There apparently were three gas stations in that imediate area at that time: Harvell's, Tony Lorino's and Sprads (a Humble station?). As best as I can determine, Sprads opened in 1939. I have no idea when Harvell's and Tony Lorino's opened as unfortunately the Kriss Kross directory doesn't give much info about areas outside of the Houston city limits during this period.

Because of that, I am also unsure of when two other business right in that area came into being and sure hope you or someone you know can enlighten me. There was a hotel or some sorts just north of the grocery store at 9020 Airline. In the late 1950s, it was called the Ranch Court Motel. In the early 1950s, it was called the Benoit Tourist Courts. It appears that prior to 1950, it might have had the name Faber, but the directory is kinda vague. It seems like its the same O B Faber who lived on Gulf Bank and for whom the Faber subdivision is named.

I was amazed to discover that in the late 1940s the Wind Swept Inn Restaurant was located right next to this hotel at 9010 Airline. Most people know it as being further down Airline next to the skating rink (today it's a Tacos del Julio). But according to the Kriss Kross directory, it was at 9010 Airline until about 1950, when it moved to 13000 Airline (today's North Freeway at Greens Road) and then moved to 10719 Airline in 1963.

Was the Memorial Baptist Church there when you lived in the area? I've heard it opened in 1932. What other business do you recall?

If you can add anything to this, please do so!

Edited by Firebird65

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pbays, I've responded to the e-mail you sent me about the Aldine Band.

As for your post about Gulf Bank, oddly enough, at the same time you were posting this, I was at the Texas Room library looking up some of the very information you posted.

According to the Kriss Kross Directory of Harris County, the grocery store you mentioned was named the Airline Food Shop. Sometime around 1948 or 1949 it became Hilliards. In around 1956, according to the Harris County Appraisal District, that store was rebuilt and became the Fairview Food Market (Lucky 7), which it remained until the 1990s. The address today is 9000 Airline; however apparently in 1944 Airline was renumbered when it changed from U.S. 75 to L149. Prior to that the address was something like 8410 (sorry, don't have my notes in front of me as I'm writing this).

The gas station was Harvell's Service Station, located right next to the grocery. I believe it was a Texaco station, although the 1944 directory doesn't say (a later one does call it a Texaco).

There apparently were three gas stations in that imediate area at that time: Harvell's, Tony Lorino's and Sprads (a Humble station?). As best as I can determine, Sprads opened in 1939. I have no idea when Harvell's and Tony Lorino's opened as unfortunately the Kriss Kross directory doesn't give much info about areas outside of the Houston city limits during this period.

Because of that, I am also unsure of when two other business right in that area came into being and sure hope you or someone you know can enlighten me. There was a hotel or some sorts just north of the grocery store at 9020 Airline. In the late 1950s, it was called the Ranch Court Motel. In the early 1950s, it was called the Benoit Tourist Courts. It appears that prior to 1950, it might have had the name Faber, but the directory is kinda vague. It seems like its the same O B Faber who lived on Gulf Bank and for whom the Faber subdivision is named.

I was amazed to discover that in the late 1940s the Wind Swept Inn Restaurant was located right next to this hotel at 9010 Airline. Most people know it as being further down Airline next to the skating rink (today it's a Tacos del Julio). But according to the Kriss Kross directory, it was at 9010 Airline until about 1950, when it moved to 13000 Airline (today's North Freeway at Greens Road) and then moved to 10719 Airline in 1963.

Was the Memorial Baptist Church there when you lived in the area? I've heard it opened in 1932. What other business do you recall?

If you can add anything to this, please do so!

The only other thing I remember is the name of the family that ran the saw mill or lumber mill. It was Kenidine.(sp). Also as an aside, I was looking at a map of the Gulf Bank Road area and saw that there was a Walla road. That road is just about where the Walla's used to live. Just wondering if there was a connection. PBays

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The only other thing I remember is the name of the family that ran the saw mill or lumber mill. It was Kenidine.(sp). Also as an aside, I was looking at a map of the Gulf Bank Road area and saw that there was a Walla road. That road is just about where the Walla's used to live. Just wondering if there was a connection. PBays

I remember a young girl, about 6 or 7 years of age whose father was the minister of a Baptist Church near where I lived on Gulf Bank Road. Her father was serving in WWII as a chaplain. I can't remember the name, but it is possible that her father was the minister of the church to which you are referring. PBays

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I remember a young girl, about 6 or 7 years of age whose father was the minister of a Baptist Church near where I lived on Gulf Bank Road. Her father was serving in WWII as a chaplain. I can't remember the name, but it is possible that her father was the minister of the church to which you are referring. PBays

I also remember the Okabayski farm. It was the largest in the area. The reason that I remember it was because of their practice of protecting the young plants with little white paper hats. As a child, this intrigued me to see an entire field with little white paper hats. PBays

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I also remember the Okabayski farm. It was the largest in the area.

Any idea of what they raised on the Okabayashi farm? The neighborhood I grew up in is made up of at least part of their land, including probably the land my parent's house sat on.

Edited by Firebird65

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The Lucky 7 Supermarket (aka the Fairview Supermarket) was at W Gulf Bank and Airline, just off the right of the pic. To my knowledge, it was the first supermarket in the area in question. Today it is some kind of auto repair shop and unless you knew it was a grocery store, you'd never be able to guess it now.

I looked it up in the old phone books in the Texas Room. Unfortunately, I can't now decipher my notes. On one page I have it being there (meaning having a phone number) in 1956. Yet on another page, I say it has a phone number in 1951. Oops! Which is right? For some reason I keep thinking it only became a Lucky 7 in 1956 and was simply called Fairview before that. But I somehow neglected to right that down. That was smart!

If you never went in there, count yourself as... pardon the pun... lucky. The neighbor who carpooled me to elementary school wold often stop there when she didn't have time to fix her kid lunch. I remember two things about the place. One was the cool sign the owner put on the courtesy booth that said the store was protected five days a week by Smith and Weston... you guess which days. LOL! Second was the gawdaful smell in the place. It was like they hadn't cleaned the place since the 1950s... be it 1951 or 1956!

As for the Kroger, I worked there in high school and college. My mom shopped there since it opened and a lady at our old church worked there from 1968 to the day it closed, including when I was there. She knows all about it. I remember the Piggly Wiggly not because we shopped there but because... don't laugh... I thought it was Porky Pig's store. LOL! What can I say... I was a kid.

As for W.W. Thorne... is the guy still alive? The Harris County Appraisal District still lists him as the owner of his house, but I figure the guy's gotta be close to 90.

I had totaly forgotten about this store. Your right the store did have the worst smell. A strange amalgom of oders. I remember the sign too lol.

My dad and uncle worked on the remodeling of the Krogers. My dad was the Superenintendant and my uncle was the carpenter foreman. Made for a quick commute...about 5 minutes but then my dad drove pretty slow. My mom shopped some at Krogers and Piggly Wiggly but she was more partial to Floreens, wich IIRC was up on airline. When I was in HS I worked at the Randall's.

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I had totaly forgotten about this store. Your right the store did have the worst smell. A strange amalgom of oders. I remember the sign too lol.

My dad and uncle worked on the remodeling of the Krogers. My dad was the Superenintendant and my uncle was the carpenter foreman. Made for a quick commute...about 5 minutes but then my dad drove pretty slow. My mom shopped some at Krogers and Piggly Wiggly but she was more partial to Floreens, wich IIRC was up on airline. When I was in HS I worked at the Randall's.

Wow! Haven't had a post here in sometime!

I have found out more about the Fairview market. It took the place of another, older store that also stood on that site in the 1940s. It was called the Airline Food Store.

There was a lot going on at that site, as the 9000 block of Airline (at Gulf Bank) was also the home to the original Windswept Inn restaurant (next door at 9010, where a snowcone place is today) and the Ranch Court Motel (9020).

I am looking at a 1957 aerial photo of the area and I can clearly see the grocery store and restaurant, although the motel looks pretty small. The grocery store itself is also much smaller. I'm toggling back and forth between 1957 and 1973 and it appears the structure that's there today wasn't built until the late 1960s or early 1970s. The Memorial Baptist Church across the street is actually not at the corner as it is today, but a little further to the north on their property. That big steeple is not around in 1957. Wish I could post the photo, but the mods of this site get squeemish when you post copyrighted images. But you can find it for yourself at historicaerials.com.

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Does anyone remember the name of that office supply company near the corner of Gulf Bank and Sweetwater? Is it still open? I remember it was like stepping back in time!

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Does anyone remember the name of that office supply company near the corner of Gulf Bank and Sweetwater? Is it still open? I remember it was like stepping back in time!

That's Allen Office Supply and Printing. It's been at a few different locations in the area before settling in that spot in about 1972.

Not sure if it's still in business, but they are listed on CitySearch, so they probably are. I image that business is between 40 and 45 years old. A pretty good run.

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According to Wikipedia, when Oak Forest subdivision was first developed by Frank Sharp in 1946-1947, it was in the Aldine ISD. The transition period from AISD to HISD is fairly vague.

From Wiki:

"When it was first established, Oak Forest was a golf course and a part of the Aldine Independent School District. The land was ceded to Houston ISD. The original Oak Forest Elementary was built in 1951,"

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That's Allen Office Supply and Printing. It's been at a few different locations in the area before settling in that spot in about 1972.

Not sure if it's still in business, but they are listed on CitySearch, so they probably are. I image that business is between 40 and 45 years old. A pretty good run.

Thanks, Firebird65. I would go there in the 80s with my parents to buy school supplies. Honestly, I would be totally shocked if it were still open - it was always dead even back in the 80s. I hope it is, but would be shocked. This topic also made me think about Dow Park in Northline Terrace. I have many fond memories of that park...played softball there for years

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Thanks, Firebird65. I would go there in the 80s with my parents to buy school supplies. Honestly, I would be totally shocked if it were still open - it was always dead even back in the 80s. I hope it is, but would be shocked. This topic also made me think about Dow Park in Northline Terrace. I have many fond memories of that park...played softball there for years

Yeah I played and coached baseball at Dow Park. My biggest Little League memory is hitting a foul ball in the last game of the 1974 pee wee season for my only contact of the year. I wasn't very good, to put it mildly.

Allen Office Supply always seemed dead to me too. Another place that you never had to worry about waiting in line was right down the street at the Gulf Bank Auto Supply (now long gone). There was never anyone in there.

Good to see this thread has been resurrected. Hopefully some more folks will post here.

What other businesses do you remember? Do you remember Springer Oil at Gulf Bank and I-45 (now underneath that Mobil station)? I always wondered what that place was. I never saw anyone in there either, but they had this big, nasty dog out front that was never chained up and would chase you if you came walking or riding a bike past the place. He'd even run across Gulf Bank. One day I threw a glass bottle in front of him (not to hurt him, but to scare him) and when that bottle busted, he yelped and ran off. He never bothered me again! LOL!

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According to Wikipedia, when Oak Forest subdivision was first developed by Frank Sharp in 1946-1947, it was in the Aldine ISD. The transition period from AISD to HISD is fairly vague.

From Wiki:

"When it was first established, Oak Forest was a golf course and a part of the Aldine Independent School District. The land was ceded to Houston ISD. The original Oak Forest Elementary was built in 1951,"

Aldine had to cede Oak Forest to HISD when the city of Houston annexed the area. Apparently, at the time, there was a law or rule that said all the land in the city had to be HISD. Obviously that rule is no longer in effect. It must have gone away sometime in the 1960s, because Aldine didn't have to give Acres Homes to HISD when Houston annexed that neighborhood.

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What other businesses do you remember? Do you remember Springer Oil at Gulf Bank and I-45 (now underneath that Mobil station)? I always wondered what that place was. I never saw anyone in there either, but they had this big, nasty dog out front that was never chained up and would chase you if you came walking or riding a bike past the place. He'd even run across Gulf Bank. One day I threw a glass bottle in front of him (not to hurt him, but to scare him) and when that bottle busted, he yelped and ran off. He never bothered me again! LOL!

I remember taking the family dog to a vet that ran his clinic out of his home at the intersection of Gulf Bank and Sweetwater. The home is still there, but the vet sign has been down for at least 10+ years. And, this is random, but there was a huge house off Airline near Gulf Bank that had a huge Statue of Liberty in the front yard.

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I remember taking the family dog to a vet that ran his clinic out of his home at the intersection of Gulf Bank and Sweetwater. The home is still there, but the vet sign has been down for at least 10+ years. And, this is random, but there was a huge house off Airline near Gulf Bank that had a huge Statue of Liberty in the front yard.

I think that vet was the Cahill Veterinary Clinic.

I never heard of that statue of liberty. Might have been interesting to see. I generally stayed away from that area. I once went through those apartments on Airway and the ones behind the Ukranian church on Meadowshire... scary. Like entering another world.

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Speaking of the Gulf Bank area, does anyone know where the old Humble tanks used to be on U.S. 75? I'm working on an upcoming blog post that has a reference to the Humble tanks north of Houston.

I was thinking it's that Exxon facility south of I-45 and Gulf Bank today, but I wasn't sure.

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Speaking of the Gulf Bank area, does anyone know where the old Humble tanks used to be on U.S. 75? I'm working on an upcoming blog post that has a reference to the Humble tanks north of Houston.

I was thinking it's that Exxon facility south of I-45 and Gulf Bank today, but I wasn't sure.

Pretty sure that's what it refers to, as Exxon used to be Humble Oil.

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Nope. I remember the old blimp base. That was way up near Holzwarth, I think. I was finally able to dig out my 1953 street map.

aldinemapsa2.jpg

It looks like it's where Aldine HS is today.

yes the old blimp station was up that way, it was on a triangle section of land on west side of I-45 across the freeway from where splash town is now i think there is a shoping center with a home depot there now.

Pretty sure that's what it refers to, as Exxon used to be Humble Oil.

Speaking of the Gulf Bank area, does anyone know where the old Humble tanks used to be on U.S. 75? I'm working on an upcoming blog post that has a reference to the Humble tanks north of Houston.

I was thinking it's that Exxon facility south of I-45 and Gulf Bank today, but I wasn't sure.

yes the humble oil tanks were about 1 block south and 1 block east of I-45 and Gulf bank road. they were accessed from the feeder streat if i remember correctly.

Edited by fairlane77

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When I was in elementary school back in the 1980s, we had a section on Aldine/Texas history. We were given these blue books that described the various areas of the state, etc. I remember the book said the name Aldine may have come from the trains that used to stop in the area. The conductor would yell "ALL DINE" when the train pulled into the area. From there, the name Aldine came to be.

That may not be the truth, but it was taught to us schoolkids!

i asked my mom about this, she graduated from aldine high in 1955, she was a senior the year the old high school burned down, anyhow she said the same story but with a little more info.

she said that when the steam trains would pull into this station to get water for the engine and the conductor would call out all dine since they would be there a while and that the railroad eventualy named the stop as aldine. but like you said might be just a local story. i assume since they were getting water the trains were inbound to houston and that is why they needed water and probably was late in the day so supper time also.

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Just to add some information about the airport that was located where the "new" high school was built. If you look at the picture you can still see the marks of the grass runways. This airport was moved to the H&H Guest Ranch. The west side of the airport was taken in when they built Drummet Blvd. for access to IAH from FM525 (what we all called Aldine-Bender). By the way 525 didn't go straight through. It stopped at Luthe, you had to make a right going east and then cut back to the right and then it came to a wye at Aldine-Westfield at the High School. There you took a right and went South until you turned left (East) again in front of the Elementary. The road then continued to Lee Rd. That was Bender, well the other side of Hwy59 was Bender. You had to go down to Lee to cross 59 and then go back up North. My 1st grade teacher lived on the East Side of 59 on Aldine-Bender, which was not FM525.

My older brother and Charles Aldrich worked at both airports while in High School. We moved there in 1949 and moved when we sold the last of our land to Shell for a service station at Beltway 8 and Claypool. My folks had a knack for buying land adjacent to property earmarked for highways and bridges.

Although steam engines were still in use in 1949 they no longer stopped at Aldine junction. Water is taken on every 100 to 110 miles, it still governs a "trip" for train crews to this day. Our land was rowed from what was supposed to have been a huge peach orchard. When we dug our first septic system we found old crates and stuff about three foot under ground.

The Okabayashi farm grew almost all your common vegatables which they sold at the Farmers Market downtown. My older brother worked for them when he was about 16-17. Mrs. Okabayashi would fix them egg foo yung for breakfast. The first time he got it he came home and made it for everyone. My dad never ate anything that wasn't separate on his plate and refused to eat it. I thought it was great and ate his and mine.

Very few of the roads were paved then. Hardy was alternately paved on opposite sides as you left Houston. Airline was paved as was Shepard. Aldine-Westfield was a well. When we were 12-13 we would walk Luthe Rd. to Aldine Mailroute and catch the Hardy-Hallsite bus to town (10cents)and deliver circulars for Dinwittie's for 50 cents a hundred during the summer.

In 1949 the area was still "free range" and many folks didn't fence, but just rounded up their cattle when they had to. Everyone fenced their gardens to keep the cows out. Most of the fenced land was for the dairy people (Spences, Millsaps, Greggs, Woodson and Satterfields).

W. W. Thorne is still alive, at least the last time I talked to Bill, Jr..

James

Edited by JWR914

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The Okabayashi farm grew almost all your common vegatables which they sold at the Farmers Market downtown. My older brother worked for them when he was about 16-17. Mrs. Okabayashi would fix them egg foo yung for breakfast. The first time he got it he came home and made it for everyone. My dad never ate anything that wasn't separate on his plate and refused to eat it. I thought it was great and ate his and mine.

Great story, James. Thanks for sharing it. Thought this thread had died out long ago. Nice to see some new material.

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I also noticed some folks wondering about Acres Homes and that area and how the lines were drawn for the district. Before integration of the schools, HISD was being sued. Part of the suit had to do with number of whites vs. blacks in various areas. The area near Waltrip was at that time in AISD, but since AISD had the Carver schools they weren't being sued. Carver at the time was brand new and had a pool which the then AISD school did not have. The two districts swapped territory to increase the white population of HISD (in that area) and AISD got territory that wasn't miles away by bus from the then high school and junior high location. They made that deal in 1957 if memory serves. City limits had nothing to do with it then and still don't.

James

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Eric Gray, QB of the 1990 National Title team, lived back there...he got shot back there one night

How could Acres Home be zoned to MacArthur and Nimitz? That's a 20 minute ride......simply pitiful how they broke that area to fill a dang quota..

I think I can answer that question, at least from the late 1970's- through the 1980's.

AISD "revamped" G.W. Carver High School in the late 70's early 80's. It became known as Aldine Contemporary Education Center. The school was unique in the area as it allowed students a certain amount of flexiblity with classes, schedules, and work load. The staff was, as you would expect, very small and were hand picked. Classes were small by urban high school standards. As a student, you really couldn't get "lost in the crowd" like the rest of Aldine's high schools. ACE's first principal was Mr. Ralph O. Norman, who later became Principal of Aldine High School.

The establishment of this program meant that the students who would normally attend Carver were dispersed out to the remaining high schools in Aldine. Transportation was provided.

Carver is now a magnet school within Aldine and the school has undergone significant changes to where it is almost unrecognizable to an original ACE student who attened since day 1 of the program. The state has placed a historical marker outside it's auditorium facing S. Victory Dr. detailing some of its history and the school's original beginnings as part of the defunct White Oak School District.

-You can sign me on this issue as one of the original students of this unique school.

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I also noticed some folks wondering about Acres Homes and that area and how the lines were drawn for the district. Before integration of the schools, HISD was being sued. Part of the suit had to do with number of whites vs. blacks in various areas. The area near Waltrip was at that time in AISD, but since AISD had the Carver schools they weren't being sued. Carver at the time was brand new and had a pool which the then AISD school did not have. The two districts swapped territory to increase the white population of HISD (in that area) and AISD got territory that wasn't miles away by bus from the then high school and junior high location. They made that deal in 1957 if memory serves. City limits had nothing to do with it then and still don't.

James

Oak Forest was still part of AISD in 1958. Sometime in 1958 (and I don't have an exact date), apparently about 2,000 residents in Oak Forest complained to the Harris County School Board that Aldine wasn't doing enough for their area and they wanted out. Among their complaints were that Aldine junior and senior highs were 26 miles (that can't be right, but that's what the reports say) away, while Houston ISD schools were but a mile and a half away. On September 17, 1958, the county school board ruled for the residents and said AISD had to cede 3 square miles of Oak Forest and Langwood to HISD. AISD appealed to the state.

On April 11, 1959, the state rejected AISD's appeal and ordered they hand over Oak Forest to HISD.

One of the reasons AISD fought the measure was because Oak Forest was the richest part of the district and at the time, AISD was in serious financial trouble. A few days after the decision, the district's schools closed for two days April 16 and 17, 1959, when AISD couldn't make payroll. Oak Forest made up approximately 2 percent of the land area of AISD, but contained 17 percent of the district's revenue. So you can see why they didn't want to let it go.

The news stories say Aldine could appeal to a district court. However, seeing how the district had no money and had bigger, more pressing matters immediately at hand, I doubt they did so. All of the stories for the rest of April dealt with the school closing crisis. No mention is made of an appeal. If one happened, it must have been later.

So it would appear, unless I find information to the contrary, that AISD turned over control of Oak Forest for the 1959-1960 school year. Kathryn Smith Elementary and its faculty were part of the transfer.

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There once was someone on here who wrote she was the mascot for the Aldine High School twirling troupe. I don't remember the person's name, but I do remember she said there was a photo of her as the mascot in the 1940 yearbook and she was wondering if anyone had a copy. Well, I came across a copy and here is that photo. Unfortunately, I do not know how to reach her. So... I hope she someday finds this post and if so, I am sorry I can't remember the name:

211v6u1.jpg

Here's a smaller version:

34hyrvc.jpg

Edited by Firebird65

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Wow, this is some great information. I've enjoyed reading about the area I grew up in and the high school I attended. I'm 29 years old and graduated from Aldine High School in 2000. My family first moved to Hidden Valley in 1986. My parents still live there today between Bunny Run and Deer Trail. Although the neigborhood has changed a lot in the last 25 years, I think its still a pretty calm and quiet place to live.

Although I don't know Mr. W.W. Thorne personnaly, I did know that he lived down the street from me. He was very active in the neighborhood Civic Club. As far as I know he is still alive. I think he was given an award by Lone Star College (I hated the name change, still do) a month or two ago. Someone mentioned Allen Office Supplies and Printing earlier, I think they used to print the monthly Civic Club newsletter.

I attended Hidden Valley Elementary from 1986 - 1992 (K-4th), Anderson for 1992-93 (5th), Stehlik Intermediate for 1993-94 (6th), Stovall MS for 1994-96 (7th-8th), and Aldine HS for 1996-2000 (9th-12th). I know that the school was renamed a while back, but if will always be Hidden Valley to me! I remember my Elementary principals were Mr. Godwin and Ms. Serkala. I am misspelling her name but that's how it sounds.

I was in band from 6th through 12th grade. I have too many high school memories to list here, but the marching and the football games were the best. The team my freshman year was so close to playing for the state championship in 1996, but we lost to Austin Westlake in the Astrodome.

Local businesses that I can remember are: Stop & Go and the Archer Mazda at Gulf Bank and 45. The Circle K, Airline Dry Cleaners, TG&Y, Weiners, and Eckerd at West Mount Houston. There used to be a grocery store in the shopping strip where Weiners was, does anybode remember the name? For some reason the colors yellow and black come to find and that the place always smelled like fish. I also remember Furrow's and Claytons. We would ride our bikes as kids to the Diamond Samrock next to HV elementary which is now a Valero. I remeber the Fiesta across the street from Aldine HS being an Apple Tree.

We primarily shopped at Kroger (Store #159) on West Mount Houston and 45. I actually worked there from August 1997 to March 1999. There was a woman there that I think had worked there since the store first opened. Her name was Pat. She even appeared in a Kroger once due to her long years of service. I have many great memories of that Kroger and the people I met there. I was sad to see it close.

I am going to keep following this discussion. Thank you everyone for your input!

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Just to add some information about the airport that was located where the "new" high school was built. If you look at the picture you can still see the marks of the grass runways. This airport was moved to the H&H Guest Ranch. The west side of the airport was taken in when they built Drummet Blvd. for access to IAH from FM525 (what we all called Aldine-Bender). By the way 525 didn't go straight through. It stopped at Luthe, you had to make a right going east and then cut back to the right and then it came to a wye at Aldine-Westfield at the High School. There you took a right and went South until you turned left (East) again in front of the Elementary. The road then continued to Lee Rd. That was Bender, well the other side of Hwy59 was Bender. You had to go down to Lee to cross 59 and then go back up North. My 1st grade teacher lived on the East Side of 59 on Aldine-Bender, which was not FM525.

My older brother and Charles Aldrich worked at both airports while in High School. We moved there in 1949 and moved when we sold the last of our land to Shell for a service station at Beltway 8 and Claypool. My folks had a knack for buying land adjacent to property earmarked for highways and bridges.

Although steam engines were still in use in 1949 they no longer stopped at Aldine junction. Water is taken on every 100 to 110 miles, it still governs a "trip" for train crews to this day. Our land was rowed from what was supposed to have been a huge peach orchard. When we dug our first septic system we found old crates and stuff about three foot under ground.

The Okabayashi farm grew almost all your common vegatables which they sold at the Farmers Market downtown. My older brother worked for them when he was about 16-17. Mrs. Okabayashi would fix them egg foo yung for breakfast. The first time he got it he came home and made it for everyone. My dad never ate anything that wasn't separate on his plate and refused to eat it. I thought it was great and ate his and mine.

Very few of the roads were paved then. Hardy was alternately paved on opposite sides as you left Houston. Airline was paved as was Shepard. Aldine-Westfield was a well. When we were 12-13 we would walk Luthe Rd. to Aldine Mailroute and catch the Hardy-Hallsite bus to town (10cents)and deliver circulars for Dinwittie's for 50 cents a hundred during the summer.

In 1949 the area was still "free range" and many folks didn't fence, but just rounded up their cattle when they had to. Everyone fenced their gardens to keep the cows out. Most of the fenced land was for the dairy people (Spences, Millsaps, Greggs, Woodson and Satterfields).

W. W. Thorne is still alive, at least the last time I talked to Bill, Jr..

James

Interesting that Minoru Okabayashi was I believe interned for a short while during WWII. His son, Tommy Okabayashi served in the vaunted 442nd RCT (one of the most highly decorated of WWII).

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There used to be a grocery store in the shopping strip where Weiners was, does anybode remember the name? For some reason the colors yellow and black come to find and that the place always smelled like fish.

You're thinking of Price Buster Foods. The grocery store changed hands over the years and in the 1990s, Rice Food Markets bought the location and turned it into a Price Buster. It was a no-frills grocery store that had a yellow and black color scheme.

Rice opened several Price Buster Foods locations around town in the early 1990s but closed them all about 10 years later. Today, the company just has their handful of Rice Epicurean stores remaining from the dozens of stores they once had.

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You're thinking of Price Buster Foods. The grocery store changed hands over the years and in the 1990s, Rice Food Markets bought the location and turned it into a Price Buster. It was a no-frills grocery store that had a yellow and black color scheme.

Rice opened several Price Buster Foods locations around town in the early 1990s but closed them all about 10 years later. Today, the company just has their handful of Rice Epicurean stores remaining from the dozens of stores they once had.

The grocery store originally in that space was a Piggly Wiggly. I'm not certain but I believe a regular Rice Food Market preceded the Price Buster. My mother was so pleased when the TG&Y opened. That meant she did not have to drive all the way to the Hancock Fabric store on North Shepherd at Pinemont to get her "sewing notions" (thread, zippers, buttons, etc.) Where the CVS is located there was previously an Eckerd's. Many Eckerd's became CVS when the latter bought the former. Before the Eckerd's there was a drug store that had a soda fountain. I believe it was called Duggan Drug. I do remember that it was a Rexall store.

My parents had their house built in Hidden Valley in 1961 and still live in it! They have been there 50 years as of last month. At that time none of the places Houstonaltima mentioned were there. I believe there might have been a U-Tote-M store on FM 149 (now State Highway 249) at U. S. Highway 75 (now Interstate 45). This would be just west of the Shell station at the southeast corner of the intersection. There was also an "ice house" across Halls Bayou; I guess near where Turney intersects the southbound frontage road now. It sold beer, of course, and "set-ups" since liquor-by-the-drink was not yet legal in Texas.

My father and Mr. Thorne know each other and speak when they meet but I wouldn't consider them close friends even though they have been neighbors for a long time. Even so, Dad would tell me if Mr. Thorne had passed away and I haven't heard such news yet.

Edited by Specwriter

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The grocery store originally in that space was a Piggly Wiggly. I'm not certain but I believe a regular Rice Food Market preceded the Price Buster. My mother was so pleased when the TG&Y opened. That meant she did not have to drive all the way to the Hancock Fabric store on North Shepherd at Pinemont to get her "sewing notions" (thread, zippers, buttons, etc.) Where the CVS is located there was previously an Eckerd's. Many Eckerd's became CVS when the latter bought the former. Before the Eckerd's there was a drug store that had a soda fountain. I believe it was called Duggan Drug. I do remember that it was a Rexall store.

My parents had their house built in Hidden Valley in 1961 and still live in it! They have been there 50 years as of last month. At that time none of the places Houstonaltima mentioned were there. I believe there might have been a U-Tote-M store on FM 149 (now State Highway 249) at U. S. Highway 75 (now Interstate 45). This would be just west of the Shell station at the southeast corner of the intersection. There was also an "ice house" across Halls Bayou; I guess near where Turney intersects the southbound frontage road now. It sold beer, of course, and "set-ups" since liquor-by-the-drink was not yet legal in Texas.

My father and Mr. Thorne know each other and speak when they meet but I wouldn't consider them close friends even though they have been neighbors for a long time. Even so, Dad would tell me if Mr. Thorne had passed away and I haven't heard such news yet.

The history of the 9419 North Freeway space in the Hidden Valley Shopping Center is as follows:

Piggly Wiggly 1966 - 1973

Rice Foods #44 1973 - 1985

Price Fighter Foods 1985 - 1986 (wasn't around long)

Aaron Sells Furniture 1987 - 1993

Price Buster 1993 - ???

Family Dollar #3394 1998 - 2000

Caramba 99 Cent Store 2000 - 2004

Giant $1 2004 - present?

The history 9411 North Freeway space is as follows:

Mading-Dugan Pharmacy #10 1966 - 1970

Eckerd Drugs #336 1970 - 2004

CVS Pharmacy #6249 2004 - present

Might as well give the rest, while I'm here... LOL!

The space at 9421 North Freeway:

TG&Y 1969 - ???

The space at 9423 North Freeway:

Weiners #33 1971 - 2001

Also in the Hidden Valley Shopping Center at 9403 North Freeway:

Hidden Valley Enco (latter Exxon) 1964 - ???

Checkers Hamburgers 1993 - 1996

Sonic Drive-In 1996 - present?

It is possible this late at night that I have some of the ones in the grocery store space and the TG&Y space mixed. I'll have to look at my original notes tomorrow and I'll make corrections if needed.

The U-Tote-M was Store #83 and was located at 715 West Mount Houston (or FM 149). It opened in 1963 in a strip center behind the Shell, which opened in as Hidden Valley Shell, also in 1963.

I've done a lot of research on area retail businesses so if you'd like to know when a retail store, a gas station, a restaurant and such community things such as schools and churches opened, just let me know. I do have the name of that bar somewhere, but I'll have to look for it tomorrow too.

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We primarily shopped at Kroger (Store #159) on West Mount Houston and 45. I actually worked there from August 1997 to March 1999. There was a woman there that I think had worked there since the store first opened. Her name was Pat. She even appeared in a Kroger once due to her long years of service. I have many great memories of that Kroger and the people I met there. I was sad to see it close.

I worked in that Kroger #159 from March 1983 to October 1987. Lot of fond memories there... I was sad to see it close too. I personally have known Pat since I was three years old. I remember my mom checking out in her line and me eating animal crackers there as a kid. LOL!

Funny story... when I was there, an older lady named Margie opened the store in the mornings at 7 a.m. She was the only cashier until 9, when Pat would come in. I went in there one morning on my way to school at North Harris (I worked evenings) and I noticed Margie signed on with a passcode of... ta-da!... 1-2-3. The very thing they tell you not to use. Well, I already knew her checker ID number, so an evil thought ran through my brain.

One night when I was the closing checker and no customers were around, I secretly signed on using Margie's ID and passcode. Then I changed her passcode, logged off, and signed back on as me. The next morning, I made sure I was the first customer in the door at 7 a.m. when the store opened. I got a pack of gum and was the first in line as Margie went to open her register. Well, she couldn't log on the checkstand as what she thought was her passcode (1-2-3) would not work (I had changed it!). Margie tried several times to log on, each time becoming more frustrated. I was turning red trying to hold back the giggles. There would be no one in the courtesy booth until 7:30 a.m. and the line was starting to back up. Finally, exasperated, ol' Margie just sat down on the register totally unable to do anything. Classic! No one ever knew what I had done... good thing too. LOL!

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The U-Tote-M was Store #83 and was located at 715 West Mount Houston (or FM 149). It opened in 1963 in a strip center behind the Shell, which opened in as Hidden Valley Shell, also in 1963.

I've done a lot of research on area retail businesses so if you'd like to know when a retail store, a gas station, a restaurant and such community things such as schools and churches opened, just let me know. I do have the name of that bar somewhere, but I'll have to look for it tomorrow too.

Firebird, everything you've said is just as I remember it. Thanks for your efforts on all the history of the Aldine area. At some point a free-standing Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant was built between the little strip center containing the U-Tote-M and the first house on Sunnywood in Hidden Valley. At first I thougth that was kind of neat because my mother would never fry chicken at home after a little grease fire incident one Friday night when she was preparing some filleted fish for dinner. It didn't take long for me, however, to become a little nauseated when, on the rare times the wind came from the east, the whole neighborhood smelled like fried chicken.

I love the smell and taste of good food before and when I am eating but, after I finish my meal, I don't want to smell it anymore. :)

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