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Posts Tagged ‘Hamilton Texas’

Harold Blair beside the patch machine.

Harold Blair beside the patch machine.

Originally published in the Hamilton-Herald News 19 March 2009.

Harold Blair has reopened his boot and shoe repair shop.

Harold Blair is back in business. At 90s something, he has reopened Blair’s Boot and Shoe Repair.

Blair purchased Crain’s Shoe Repair in the mid- 1980s. The business was originally operated by Robert

Verne Crain, who opened in January 1954. Crain was the father of E. C. Weathers of Hamilton, who provided a history of her father’s shop.

By January 1954, Robert Verne Crain was ready to launch out on his own in the shoe, saddle and combine canvas repair business, she wrote. “Within a 24-hour period, Mother, Daddy and I drove to Celina, purchased a shoe repair shop, loaded it on Bill Stephens’ truck and returned to Hamilton.

Crain’s Western Shop opened at 205 N. Bell, which in 1954 was the north end of the building now occupied by Floral Designs by Jill. Within a few years, the front part of that building became available, and Verne, with the help of his older brother, Edwin, rolled the shoe repair equipment on iron pipes up the street to 123 E. Henry St., which was its location when the city flooded on April 26, 1957.

On that day, Pecan Creek went on a rampage, causing an estimated half-million dollars in damage to the city’s business district. The square was submerged in water, and many stores on the north and east sides of the square had serious damage. The City Drug building had three feet of water inside when its back door disintegrated. Several cars from Paul Gilliam’s Used Car lot on North Rice were washed away. Gerald’s Feed Store, which had folding doors across the front and back, flooded throughout, damaging almost all of their inventory.

Next door was the shoe repair shop. “I was a senior at Mary Hardin-Baylor College in Belton… we spent the evening in the darkened first floor parlor of our dorm”, Weathers wrote. “Occasionally when electricity came on, we heard about floods throughout Central Texas.” Weathers said she wasn’t concerned when news was broadcast about floods in Hamilton, because she was sure that her parents were either at their farm at Blue Ridge or at the home on West Grogan Street. But they were not. They rode out the storm from their shop.

“I will never know why Daddy had sandbags in his shop, but he did,” Weathers wrote. The Crains sandbagged the front door, which was slanted across the southeast corner of the building, reducing the force of the water and preventing their building from being flooded.

Mrs. Jewel Workman Hughes Parrish purchased the building in 1958, and the Crains moved their shop across the street to 210 N. Bell, a building that had only a dirt floor, and later to 206 N. Bell, its final location.

Illness caused Verne to close the store in 1974, but Ray Weathers, Elreeta’s husband, reopened in 1975 and operated the business for 10 more years. He sold all of the shoe repair equipment, supplies and furniture to Blair in 1986.

Blair will be open 9 a.m. to noon and 2-6 p.m. on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

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It is my conclusion that the Atkinson Hotel was originally called the Misener Commercial Hotel, because:

  1. Chester Clay Atkinson died in December, 1956. According to his obituary from a Hamilton newspaper, the Atkinsons sold their hotel to First Baptist Church in August, 1955.
  2. The obituary says that the Atkinsons bought the “Hamilton Hotel” in 1925. The 1934 article said that they “built up an attractive and superior small hotel patronage” rather than saying that they erected the building in which the hotel was located.
  3. Edwin Ruthvin Misener moved to Dallas in 1922.
  4. When Edwin Ruthvin and Sarah E. Misener celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary in 1911–they lived on South Bell
  5. The shape of the roof, location of chimneys, second-floor railings, and 2nd floor windows and door are too similar for it not to be the same building.
    The Atkinson Hotel after it had been purchased by First Baptist Church in 1955.

    The Atkinson Hotel after it had been purchased by First Baptist Church in 1955.

    The Misener Commercial Hotel c. 1900-1922

    The Misener Commercial Hotel c. 1900-1922.

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An historical marker will be unveiled and dedicated on Sunday, April 19, at 2 p.m. at the home built by Col. George R. Freeman on the corner of Main and College streets–immediately west of St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in Hamilton.

The marker will commemorate the builder of the house, Col. George R. Freeman (1830-1910), who was a Confederate officer during the Civil War.

The Texas Historical Commission places historical markers and designations as tools to be used to interpret, promote and protect historic and cultural resources that are worthy of preservation.

On June 11, 1865, in Austin, Col. Freeman interrupted the robbery of the Texas State Treasury preventing bankruptcy of Texas.

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Pictured are brothers Danny and Mikel Craig installing the steeple.

Pictured are brothers Danny and Mikel Craig installing the steeple.

This Sunday April 5th, Providence Baptist Church will dedicate their new steeple during the 11 am worship service. The church is also providing a fellowship lunch after the morning services. The steeple was installed in January. Funds for the steeple were provided by an anonymous donor.

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sanitarium

About 1924/1925 With Nurses/Student Nurses on the Balconies. From a Postcard shared by Burt and Charlene (Livingston) Rose.

The first hospital in Hamilton was opened in 1921 in the East Main Street former home of Dr. C. C. McMordie by Dr. C. E. Chandler and Dr. D. B. Beach after they moved their medical practice from Shive.  Drs. Beach and Chandler were soon joined by Dr. C. C. Cleveland, who had been practicing at Pottsville.  The three young doctors decided to build a 4-story hospital across the street of Dr. McMordie’s home.  The new 50-bed hospital opened in 1924.  (I was born in this hospital.-ECW.]  The three lower floors were constructed with brick, and the fourth floor (dormitory for nurses) was of frame construction.  Internal ramps, as well as stairs, connected the floors.  An accredited school of nursing provided training for many young ladies.

Following the death of Dr. Beach in 1936 and Dr. Chandler in 1940, the hospital was closed for a few years.  The building was used as a barracks during World War II for student pilots who were training at the Hamilton Airfield.  Following World War II the building was again used as a hospital for a few years.

A group of Hamilton citizens met 23 January, 1957, to formulate plans to construct a new hospital.  A stock company was formed with a capitol stock of $150,000.  Officials of the stock company were: George B. Golightly, Chairman; W. P. Lawson, Vice President; and W. G. Barkley, Secretary-Treasurer.    Dr. C. C. Cleveland, C. M. Hatch, Haskell Harelik, Floyd Campbell, and W. O. Manning were also on the Board of Directors.  Haskell Harelik had  purchased the East Ward School Campus following the closure of that school and the opening of Ann Whitney Elementary School in 1949.  This property was chosen to be the location of the new hospital.  Mr. Harelik accepted stock in the Hospital Stock Company equivalent to his cost in purchasing the property from Hamilton ISD.  Hamilton General Hospital opened 31 August, 1958.

In July, 1966, Medicare was available to the residents of Hamilton County. Congressman Omar Burleson estimated that 1,700 Hamilton County residents who were 65 or older were eligible for Medicare. Medicare was part of Lyndon Baines Johnsons’s “The Great Society” The first person to be admitted to the Hamilton County General Hospital as a Medicare patient was eighty-one-year-old Mrs. Charlie Etta (Riley) Henderson, daughter of Lorenzo D. Riley and Nancy Perkins Riley.

hamilton-general-hospital-1988

In 1987 Hamilton General Hospital was closed by Harris Methodist Affiliated Hospital System.  Residents of Hamilton and Hamilton County raised in excess of $320,000 to re-open the hospital in September, 1988.

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New Hamilton General Hospital.

Be sure to visit the That’s My World! blog.

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Today’s My World Tuesday features photos from Hamilton most taken prior to 1950.

Rice Street, West side of Courthouse Square, Hamilton

Rice Street, West side of Courthouse Square, Hamilton. The picture is from a postcard supplied by H. L. Griffith, Griffith is a descendant of Jesse Jones Griffith, First Treasurer of Hamilton County, TX.

Southside of Hamilton Square prior to 1930.

South side of Hamilton Square prior to 1930. The Wm. Connolly & Co. Groceries & Dry Goods store can be seen on the left. Notice that the street has both cars and horse drawn wagons. Contributed by H.L. Griffith.

Hope you enjoyed this little jaunt back in time.

Be sure to visit the That’s My World! blog.

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Hamilton Mill & Elevator Company

Burned in the 1940's and the Wieser family moved their milling business to Lampasas where there was a railroad.  The abandoned structure still stands on South Railroad Street, north of Kooken Field.

Burned in the 1940's and the Wieser family moved their milling business to Lampasas where there was a railroad. The abandoned structure still stands on South Railroad Street, north of Kooken Field.

McKINLEY-CORRIGAN GROCERY STORE

George Thomas "Tom" Smith, Sr.,    ?  ,    ?   , Jesse Smith,   ?  Shared  by Norene Brian Walls

Left-Right: George Thomas "Tom" Smith, Sr., ? , ? , Jesse Smith, ? Shared by Norene Brian Walls

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