Sunday, December 1, 2013

Historic Fort Stockton, TX

We had another fun get together with some friends at Kerrville: Vicki and Diana standing, me, Sharon, Birdie, and Karen sitting. What a great group!
Then Birdie and I headed west on I-10, where the landscape changed to rocky buttes.
 I just liked this row of sparrows on the fence. Perhaps you can write a caption for the one with his back turned.
We arrived in Fort Stockton in time to do an auto tour of its historic sites. Our tour begins with Paisano Pete. At the time he was erected in 1980, he was dubbed the largest roadrunner in the world at 11 feet tall and 22 feet long. Since then, a larger replica  of a roadrunner has been constructed in New Mexico. Today, Paisano Pete is all dressed for Christmas.
 From here we proceed down the historic Main Street.
 Some of the stops on our tour.
 Walking historic Main Street is much like walking through a ghost town.
 Most of the buildings are empty.
 Freddies Cleaners is in what appears to be an old gas station.
 The First National Bank was built in 1912, failed during the depression, and was reopened as a state bank which operated until the 1960s.
Notice the tile decor on the entry between the massive Doric columns.
 This colorful business seems alive and well, selling Mexican arts and crafts.
It was fun to browse through, and was all decorated for Christmas. 

The historic Rooney Hotel, built in 1910 was to be renovated and scheduled to reopen as an office building.
 They're running a little behind on that project.
We noticed a couple of old murals...some movies have been filmed here.

 Main Street
It was Sunday and the museum was closed, but building itself is interesting on the outside.

Across the street is the Grey Mule Saloon, where hotel guests would often visit.
 We found the grey mule out back.
This is what the Pecos County Courthouse looked like in its heyday.
 This is the courthouse today.
The community was originally named St. Gall.
 The park.
 The Zero Stone is still here and is protected under glass.
 The arrow points to the Zero Stone.
The Old Jail was built in 1882 of native sandstone.
 This is the ruins of the oldest house in Fort Stockton.

It was built between 1855 and 1860 to serve as quarters for Camp Stockton's civilian merchant.
The first school and telegraph office shared a building.
 Interestingly, the building still serves as a school...preschool.
Birdie pointed out this pomegranate tree...I've never seen pomegranates except in stores.
 Birds enjoy the fruit.
There were remains of two old general stores...this was Young's Store, circa 1876.

 This was Koehler's Store on the right and Comanche Springs on the left.

How it looked back then. The building now houses a community center.
We saw two historic churches. This is St. Joseph Catholic Church.
 The carved doors...
 The history:
My favorite was St. Stephens Episcopal Church. Parishioners were just arriving and invited us inside.
 It's history. Parishioners told us that it was Mrs. Sibley who chose the color and painted the church.
Inside you can see the cross of solid ebony. It was getting late, so we did not stay for service.
And yes, there really is a fort at Ft. Stockton. To the right of the sign is the guardhouse.
 Troop barracks
 Cell inside the guardhouse
 Officers quarters. Three of the original 8 buildings remain. One is a private residence.
 John Wayne was here.

 The two remaining officer's quarters are crumbling.
 Note the cracks in the walls.
THe Episcopal Church from the back as the sun is setting.
Hope you enjoyed the tour. Next we'll go to Big Bend National Park.


  1. Definitely looks a little deserted there but you can make an interesting post out of every place you visit.