Tracking down the Oldest Bar in Dallas

What’s the oldest bar in Dallas?  AH

To begin with, booze and bars have always been big in Dallas.  The very first store in Dallas in the 1840’s sold nothing but fabric for clothes and whiskey.  Early Dallas was a frontier town with saloons like Dick Flanginan’s (featuring boxing every Tuesday) all along north Main Street and dance halls to the southwest.  Dallas even had its own opium’s den in downtown, The Black Elephant run by Charlie Chunn.  An account of Dallas in the 1890’s said that it had, “a nice lemonade stand, an ice cream parlor, and three hundred saloons.”

One of these

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Three hundred of these

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But the oldest bar, well got to admit it, this isn’t the easiest question to answer.  And in fact I don’t have a simple “this is the oldest bar in Dallas” answer below.  There are questions as to what constitutes a bar. Is a fancy restaurant that serves food and booze a bar?  How about a place with live music and booze?  Furthermore, when do you mark the beginning of a bar’s existence?  If either ownership or the operators change, is it still the same?  What if it moves but keeps the same concept, employees and ownership?  I don’t have the answers to those questions, rather I have several contenders below which you yourself and make the determination about the oldest bar in Dallas.

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Let’s begin with an example of how complicated defining a bar and it’s beginning is .  Consider The Loon on McKinney.  The Loon itself has been around for almost thirty years in the same place, under the same ownership, with the same concept, which is quite old for Dallas nightlife.

 

The-Loon

The Loon

But before it was known as the Loon, it was operated under different ownership and known as Joe Miller’s.  Before that it was operated as the Villager Club a cool jazz club in the 1960’s.  Further complicating the matter is the fact that The Loon itself will soon be moving (if it hasn’t already) to make way for some CVS or bank or parking lot.  The march of progress is a common reason for older bars in Dallas not being around.  Anyways, when The Loon reopens at a different location, which date does one consider its beginning?  The current 2014 date, the 1985 date when Joe Miller’s widow sold the place, or even further back to its 60’s roots as a jazz club.  Convoluted right?  Okay let’s try a less complicated example.

Ship’s Lounge on Lowest Greenville.  Ship’s started  slinging beer and wine 61 years ago, and hasn’t changed much since then.  It’s in the same location, with the same concept, with stable ownership, and in some cases bar stools from when it opened.

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Ship’s the same since ’53.

Putting a beginning date on Ship’s is easy, but going back before ’53 it gets complicated again.

Club Schmitz is just as old as Ship’s Lounge, perhaps even older.  Schmitz on Old Denton Drive in northwest Dallas has been serving beer in the same spot since 1946 when German brothers started a bar in an old farmhouse.

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Present day Club Schmitz

But that farmhouse burned down and the German brothers had to rebuild Club Schmitz in 1953.  They rebuilt in the same location but managed to contuinely operate their bar as the brothers sold beer out of coolers to patrons who leisurely drank beneath the trees in the shade.  The same family still owns Club Schmitz and hardly a thing has changed in the past 60 years.

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Yesteryear Club Schmitz.  As you can tell not much as changed

If you’re a not inclined to give Club Schmitz those years before there “new” building was built, then you might consider The Longhorn Ballroom on Industrial.  The Longhorn was built in 1950 by eccentric millionaire O.L. Nelms for his friend Bob Wills.  Bob Wills and his band the Texas Playboys played a lot of early shows at the Longhorn, which is more of a dance hall/honky tonk/punk rock showcase/professional wrestling venue, then a traditional ballroom dancing…ballroom.  Greats like Elvis, James Brown, Otis Reading and The Sex Pistols have all played the Longhorn.   The Pistols show produced this famous quote from Noel Monk’s book, 12 Days on the Road: The Sex Pistols and America. “Sid Vicious’s face is smeared with blood. Not all of it his. The Sex Pistols have hit Texas, and Texas has hit back.”

Also this famous picture.

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The Longhorn Ballroom has been though more than a dozen owners and operates in the past 6 decades. Hell, Jack Ruby even ran it for a while.  And to consider it operating continuously since 1950 is a stretch.

Going further back before 1950 or 1946 and finding pre-war places that are in old buildings with owners and operates that have ties to the originals, and have managed to stay up and running while also staying true their alcohol propitiating ancestors is even more difficult.  The older dance halls and music venues like Lu Ann’s or The Aragon Ballroom are long gone.  The bars and saloons have been bulldozed over like the Loon or Dick Flanigan’s (The Wilson Building circa 1904 now sits where Flangian’s used to be).  And trying to find pre-prohibition places is incredibly tough, because you have to find places that survived by not selling booze while still serving booze but still not “serving” booze.

Beer? What beer?  Oh you mean root beer, yes this is all root beer.

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One place that has stood the test of time is the Adolphus Hotel in Downtown Dallas.  The Adolphus Hotel opened up in 1912 and the restaurant/bar followed in 1916. Originally named the Bambooland Room it was one of the classiest restaurants in town.

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Not what you pictured when you thought of “oldest Bar in Dallas”

The restaurant, now known has the French Room has remained classy, while the bar, now known as “Walt Garrison’s Rodeo Bar” has been developed as cowboy chic for tourists.  The place has had its up and downs, there have been revamps, re-launches including sponsoring an on premises Ice-capades style show for 15 years, so it could be easy to question whether the Adolphus ‘s restaurant and bar are the oldest in Dallas.  However if you can afford having a glass of wine in the French Room, you can make a claim that people have been sitting there drinking wine in the same place, in much the same fashion, for almost 100 years.  And as far as Prohibition goes, well, Nochi Thompson from Boardwalk Empire will tell you  that as the classiest hotel and restaurant in Dallas, you had to have a way of getting your guests booze.  After all, the Adolphus was built by the heir to the Anheuser-Busch beer brewing empire, Adolphus Busch pictured below.

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The man responible for Busch Light

One last contender I’ll throw out there comes from a social organization.  Dallas has had a lot of social organizations throughout our history, including Masonic lodges, VFW’s, Kiwanis clubs, Knights of Columbus, The Bonehead Luncheon Club, debutante clubs like the Idlewild and even country clubs. As for the oldest bar, I’m going to single out one, the Sons of Hermann.

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Outside of Sons

The Sons of Hermann is a fraternal organization of mainly German-Americans who founded a lodge in Dallas in 1890.  Two decades later in 1911, the four Dallas area lodges pooled their resources together and built a joint Hall for brotherhood, camaraderie, and because their country invented Oktoberfest, for drinking beer.  The building itself hasn’t changed much the past 103 years; it’s still a place for people to gather together to eat, drink, and be merry.  What has changed is how the Sons’ have operated it.  Years ago you had to be a member or a member’s guest to enjoy Sons,  today anybody can walk on in and have a beer at the bar.

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Welcome ya’ll

So there’s that little kink, but other than that the place has remained pretty much the same.  As for the Prohibition problem, well, it wasn’t illegal to brew beer for your own “personal” use.  So if a few Sons (what the members are called) brewed a few gallons every month and brought it down to the beer hall they built to “share” with their friends and their friend’s friends, so be it.

DIBTA: 20 reasons why Dallas Is Better Than Austin

DIBTA – it stands for “Dallas Is Better Than Austin.”

1.  We built a park on top of our freeway.  You built a freeway on top of your freeway.

Austin

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Dallas

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2.  Dirk Freaking Nowitzki.

Both as a MVP world champion athlete

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And as a person (seen here in Kenya with his wife at their wedding.)

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3.  Our biggest contribution to Tex-Mex is the frozen margarita, yours is a contest to see how many potato egg and bacon burritos you can eat.

So famous and delicious that there’s one in the Smithsonian.

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Um…Man V. Food famous?

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4.  An actual African American community with a strong musical history that dates back to Robert Johnson and runs all the way through to Erykah Badu (quick name one black person from Austin that didn’t play for UT).

Dallas

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More Dallas

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Austin

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5.  Roundup is better than, wait do you have any gay cowboy saloon dance club that Lady Gaga and Jennifer Lawrence like?  No, okay just checking.

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Lady Gaga at Roundup (Not pictured Austin)

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6.  We’re not inundated by 200 of the biggest blowhards every other year for several months. (The Texas legislature)

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This looks like a conversation I want to be a part of said no one ever

7.  120 miles of light rail and commuter rail service versus 50 (DART versus the Capital). 

Dallas’s extensive DART network

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Austin’s, um…extensive red line north?

Capital MetroRail Red LineAlso DART’S least busy rail line carries three times as many passengers as the enitre rail system for Austin does.

8.  Our festivals aren’t sponsored by huge corporations, or over run by tens of  thousands of people from LA, Chicago or New York.  But they are headlined by local bands and not arena bands like Coldplay, The Eagles, or Van Morrison. 

Polyphonic Spree playing at Dallas’ Homegrown Festival

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Coldplay? Van Morrison? Journey???? playing at “Target presents the Samsung South by Southwest Festival sponsored by Pepsi.”

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9.  Ron Washington 

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He’s having more fun in life than you Austin.

10.  Arguably the strongest and most vibrant LGBT community in Texas.

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Dallas County Sheriff Lupe Valdez has been a proud lesbian for years and the elected sheriff since 2006.

11.  Our “off the beaten path hang out spots” stay that way.  They aren’t inundated by hipsters every weekend and over exposed.

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We like to keep our hidden gems hidden.

12.  Our basketball coach named Rick is better than yours.  (Mavs coach Rick Carlie is better than UT’s Rick Barnes).

Notice the background behind our coach named Rick

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Now notice the background behind yours

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Hmmmm….what’s the difference

13.  White Rock Lake is better than Barton Springs.  (where’s the Barton Springs Marathon).

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Lake > Spring

14.  Denton is better then Round Rock.

Denton below.

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Round Rock below

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15.  High fashion in Dallas is more then a nice pair of jeans.  Cough, cough Neiman’s  cough.

High Fashion in Dallas (that’s Neiman’s head Stanley Marcus with French designer CoCo Channel at Neiman’s in Dallas)

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As opposed to “High” Fashion in Austin

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16.  Petilocas is better than Live Oak, – at least according to the medals they win at all those American Beer Award thingys.  Haven’t heard of it, well that’s simple you arrogant beer snubs.  It’s because according to their owner, “…calls from Austin to sell his beer there are largely ignored. ‘For years I drove down there for good beer, now they need to come up here.”

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This is Michael Peticolas, founder of Peticolas brewing. If you look closely you can see that he’s flipping off Austin.

17.  Our suburban minor league teams are better than your yours.

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Go Allen Americans!!

18.  Lee Park Easter Hat Derby

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Celebrate Pride

19.  The Red River Rivarly.  The biggest annual football game your team plays doesn’t even happen in your town.  Plus, when do the Cowboys, Mavericks, Stars or Rangers play a meaningful game in Austin.

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Texas-OU at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas (Again Not Pictured Austin)

20.  Our skyline. Nobody ever wrote a song about how great Austin looks at night from a DC-9.

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Top Ten Historical Places in Dallas you might not know about

Where are all the big historical places in Dallas – CF

Dallas has no shortage of historical places.  There are over a hundred places list on the National Historical Registry, and more than three hundred places have those historical markers from the state.

Like this one

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And instead of listing the most popular ones, or the best known ones, I’ve listed ten that for various reasons are noteworthy but generally not well known.

The Very First Hilton Hotel – Before Hilton hotels became a name brand, before Paris Hilton became Paris Hilton, even before the founder of Hilton Hotels was portrayed by Chelcie Rose in Mad Men, Conrad Hilton was a small time hotel operator.  His very first hotel to bear his name was the 14 story tall Hilton Hotel in Dallas.  Seen here below shortly after opening.

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Built in 1925 for 1.3 million dollars, Hilton also had his personal office in the building.  Currently it operates as the Hotel Indigo, a chic boutique hotel.

Enjoy Conrad’s first beauty at ­­­­Main Street and S. Harwood Street in Downtown

The First Highway in Texas – Chances are you’ve run by the historical marker for the very first highway in Texas.  Or biked by it maybe.  The first highway in the state was built back when Texas was a republic 170 years ago (yes they had highways before cars).  It ran roughly from Texarkana to Dallas and the road that most closely mirrors its path in present day Dallas is highway 78 or Garland Road.  As such the historical marker is located at the southern end of White Rock Lake above the spillway, right about at the damn.

If this is your view of the lake, turn around and walk up the hill, the marker will be on your left.

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Walk down the same path that the first Texans did at the intersection of San Raphael and Garland in East Dallas.

Sons of HermannThe Sons of Hermann Hall is a 100 year old fraternal hall.  A building that harkins back to an older era and it has more then a few claims to fame.

Known more commonly as “Sons”

sons of hermannFor one, it’s the oldest wood frame two story commercial building in the City.  Okay not impressed, well they filmed part of Robocop there and Kelly Clarkson’s American Idol auditions were there.  Still not, okay, well Pat Green played there, so did Townes Van Zandt, the Dixie Chicks, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Todd Snider and more.  It also happens to be the first spot in Dallas where Robert Earl Keen played, Wlico too.  And that little old band from Dallas, the Old 97’s, played their very first gig at Sons.  If you’re still unimpressed by all that, well it’s haunted too, so there.

Go see ghosts and the next big alt-country band before they get big at 3414 Elm Street in Deep Elbum.

Freedmen’s cemetery – Following the emancipation, small communities of freed slaves began to form on the outskirts of southern cities called Freedmen’s towns.  The largest community in Dallas was located just north of downtown and it thrived for many years.  Known as Freedmen’s Town North Dallas, and later “State and Thomas,”  there isn’t much left of it nowadays.  If you couldn’t tell by the State and Thomas name, the area went through a urban renewal/gentrification period, it’s most commonly referred to today as “Uptown.”  But the Cemetery’s still there, along with a nice memorial to the community.

Pay your respects to generations of African Americans at Central Expy & Calvary Drive in Uptown.

At Eastern Entrance to the Cemetery stands this memorial.

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Lee Park – Lee Park’s an interesting Park with an interesting history.  It’s one of the oldest in Dallas (1909).  President Roosevelt (FDR) dedicated the statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee back in 1936 on the Park’s grounds.  There’s even a replicate of General Lee’s home in the Park called Arlington Hall that was built around the same time.  Now fast forward three decades to when Oaklawn had become the happening place for hippies and the counter culture.  In April of 1970, the Park was the scene for the infamous “Lee Park Massacre.”  It wasn’t a massacre just a small hippie riot of 3 or 4 thousand hippies when the police arrested a few kids for swimming in Trutle Creek.  And now fast forward to today where the Park is the scene for the magnificent LGBT community staple, the Lee Park Easter Hat Derby.  Truly one of Dallas’s most unique and wonderful scenes.

The three stages of Lee Park

Confederate

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Hippie

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LGBT

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Go be a Fabulous hat wearing Confederate hippie at 3333 Turtle Creek Blvd in Uptown.

Historic West End Buildings – I’m only picking one of the historic building in the West End to point out.  I’m just going to quote from the historical Marker and let me know when something stops you down.  ‘Constructed in 1909, this building was first occupied in 1910 by the Hobson Electric company. The warehouse was next leased to the Maroney Hardware Company, which was bought in 1926 by Rufus W. Higginbotham”…Rufus W. Higginbotham, quite a name.

I know you’re thinking in your head that this is Rufus W. Higginbotham…but it’s not

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This is Rufus, he was much sweeter, but still very Old World-y

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Not to make light of of the name, but if you’re going to checking out a historic buildings in the West End, might as well have it be this one, seen below

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Enjoy Higginsbothaming at 1701 Market St. in the West End.

Buckner Childern’s home and cabin – Buckner is more than just a road. Buckner was a caring Baptist and earlier settler of Dallas.  He has two large contributions to Dallas history.  First, he started a children’s home for orphanages and abandoned children.  Whish was something of a problem in the early frontier days, by the turn of the century it was helping 500 childern a year.

Buckner’s Charter for a Childern’s home from the 19th century

buckner_application_effieSecond, Buckner and his family watched over Dallas history.  They saved John Neely Bryan’s cabin, the first house, nay the first structure in Dallas.  For years he kept it in the basement of the Buckner Orphanage, and when it was recreated for the World’s Fair in 1936 in Dallas, the City used the remnants of the cabin as a model.

Be reminded of Dallas’s charity and early cabins at 5200 S. Buckner Blvd in Southeastern Dallas.

W. Lee O’Daniel – Quick name the only person in history to defeat President Lyndon Johnson (LBJ) in an election.  Need a hint, he was also the inspiration for Governor Pappy O’Daniels  in the Coen Brother’s movie “O’ Brother Where Art Thou”  Yeah that guy, W. Lee “Pappy” O’Daniel.   O’Daniels was a radio personality in the 30’s with a catch phrase of “pass the biscuits, Pappy.”   Which come to think of it, is a pretty awesome catch phrase.  He ended up running for and being elected as governor of Texas and then ran for the US senate beating LBJ and serving one term.   He retired to Dallas and founded an insurance agency.

Fake Pappy Signing

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Real Pappy Signing

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Share a biscuit with Pappy at Cedar Springs and Oaklawn (the Triangle) in Uptown.

The Davis Building – There are plenty of historical building in downtown, from the Kirby building, to Union Station, to the old City Hall. And just like with the Higginbothaming Building I’m only going to point out one.  So why point out this building, well there’s the wonderful cupola up top and the history with the Republic National Bank.

The cupola as seen at night on the Davis Building.

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But really it’s the 1991 TV movie “Touch and Die” starring Martin Sheen that was filmed at the Davis Building means that its making this list.  It also stars his daughter, I think.    From the imdb summary “Magenta getting involved with a combination US Presidential Campaign and plutonium smuggling ring and almost ending up dying from radiation poisoning in the process.”  Made for TV movie about plutonium smuggling in 1991, I’m sure it’s awesome.

See where Martin and his daughter made a movie at 1309 Main St. in Downtwon

Anyone of Dallas 57 historic cemeteries – This might be cheating a little bit, but Dallas has some 57 different historical cemeteries.  That’s one per each 15 square miles.  There’s probably one your neighborhood or the neighborhood just over. Other then the Freedmen’s cemetery I mentioned earlier, there’s the French Utopian settlers cemetery from 1850, the migrate workers cemetery from the great Trinity Farm, cemeteries for settlers from New York, Tennessee, and the large Jewish cemetery.  There’s even one cemetery for the Pioneers of Dallas, that’s actually a cemetery created to combine several older cemeteries that had to be moved.  As a last note, I’d point out that these 57 cemeteries doesn’t even include the cemetery where Mickey Mantle is buried here in Dallas.

Pay your respects to men and women how helped create Dallas at some little cemetery likely located around the corner from you.

The weather we just went through is called a “Blue Norther,” and why Dallas doesn’t have a Winter as a Season

Is winter in Dallas always like this – TM

No, because Dallas doesn’t have a winter.  We have a season called “northers” and when it ices over real bad that particular storm is called a blue norther or Texas norther.   Seriously this isn’t just a home spun term, the weather channel acknowledges it.  Here let me explain.

In Dallas we have basically five seasons.  Jim Rogers back in 1951 labeled the best I’ve ever heard

Spring, just regular spring with rain, expect ours come with thunder and lighting, from about the end of February to the beginning of May.

Summer, a fairly pleasant time of clear skies, and temps in the 80s and into the 90s that last from May until mid July

Sol, or Latin for the sun, from July into August where the glare of the sun is the most striking thing about the world for ten to twelve weeks

Autumn or porch weather or the best weather in Dallas from September into December 11, 2013

Norther, i’ll just directly quote Rogers here

The fifth and final season ordinarily begins in December and continues well into February.  It is designed as a Norther and not winter because Dallas does not have winter as the northern part of this country knows it.  Mild sunny weather persists and then icy biting winds sweep straight down from Canada and freeze the marrow of Texan’s bones.  This sudden blast of cold when the temperature drops as much as twenty or thirty degrees in an hour and slides from balmy air and open windows to a howl of wind and ice overnight is as a blue norther.  Northers usually blow themselves out in a few days, the wind changes direction, coming from the south and a gulf breeze once more brings mildness.”

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Notice where the longest dagger is pointing? Right at North Texas and Dallas

Does that sound familiar, kinda like what we just went through?  I’ll remind you that the a few days before the temperature dropped as low as twelve, and we had two inches of solid ice; temperatures in Dallas were as high as 80 degrees.  And though this bleu norther as latest longer than normal, next week temps will be back at 65.

The most famous northers and blue northers in the past few years, include the almost white Christmas of 2011, the Super Bowl week storm, the unseasonably early Thanksgiving Day Leon Lett miscue for the Cowboys.  And personally for me once in the late 80’s early 90’s when the edges of White Rock froze and the child version of me got to take a few closely watched and careful steps on the frozen lake.

The norther that blew down during the Super Bowl Week, wrecked havoc with the Super Bowl

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Lett about to botch a Thanksgiving day game with the Dolphins.  It’s okay Leon, you were a two time Prob-Bowler and won three Super Bowls

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This is partly why snow is Dallas is almost always greeted with excitement and enjoinment by most.  It’s here for a day or two, schools shut down for day maybe, people throw snow balls, sled down Flag Pole Hill on cafeteria trays, take a few pictures, drink a little too much wine or bourbon, and then within a short while, everything’s back to normal; and you see people in short sleeves again.  This can be particularly true for adults that are transplants to Dallas from northern cities.  Those who talk about months of snow on the ground, constant freezing temperatures and blizzards that not only shut people in for longer then a week, but also seriously endanger people’s lives.

What happens when it snows in “Winter”

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What Happens when it snows in Dallas during a “Norther”

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Of course it’s always fun to see these new transplants down here the first time they experienced a good icing and blue norther.  Right before the storm blows in, when the news is talking about SNOW…ICE…AN INCH OF ACCUMULATION…SCHOOL CLOSINGS.  They get all proud and scuff at how we freak out about a inch of accumulation.  Of course they are often the last ones into work, coming in all white faced, asking, “how the hell anyone can drive on this ice, cause they were sliding around all over the place doing 180’s every twenty feet.”  Because though Dan in accounting from Cleveland can drive through four feet of snow fall on the roads, every Dallasite and most seasoned north Texans know how to slide over an inch of ice accumulation on the roads.

Or to just stay put, build a snowman and get drunk.

Drunk Snowman

From the Kennedy Files Part V: Oswald with his Rifle, His Mug Shot, Telegrams from “farmer’s Branch Coward

The fifth in a series of posts before the 50th anniversary of November 22nd, 1963, about that fateful day and the days afterward.

Click here for part one (Ruby’s mug shot, Oswald’s arrest warrant, the famous “cut out” photo, and telegrams calling Oswald a filthy tramp)

Click here for part two (Oswald after he was arrested, The grassy knoll statement, Oswald’s fake ID and the FBI investigating whether Ruby was gay)

Click here for part three (Ruby’s stripper girlfriend, Oswald’s Texas Theater seat, Ruby’s lawyer has a heart attack, and Frank Sinatara’s Drummer’s role in the events of the day)

Click here for part four (the scene in the parking garage right after Oswald was shoot, Ruby’s Psy evaluation, and Oswald’s family visit him in jail)

Everything is from the City of Dallas’s file on the Kennedy assassination and the Oswald murder from online the City of Dallas achieves. Some are presented without comment other aren’t. Click on the images to enlarge them.

Oswald’s Original Mug Shot

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Oswald and his famous photo

oswald rifle twoIt’s interesting that the police’s file on Oswald also includes the photos below with Oswald cut out, and with a police officer standing in his place.

cut outdallas dectiveOfficer Tippit’s File

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Officer Tippit was gunned down by Oswald shortly after Kennedy was shot.  The following is an account of the shooting.  Notice how Mr. Callaway, a used car salesmen, saw the murder, picked up Tippit’s gun hailed a cab and proceeded to try and chase down Oswald in order to shoot him.  Ballsy Mr. Callaway, I’ll give you that.

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Speaking of Ballsy, or not so much, two telegrams to Ruby, one from “Farmers Branch Coward”

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From the Kennedy Files Part IV: The Scene right after Oswald was Shoot, Ruby’s Psy Evaluation, Oswald Wife visits him in Jail

The fourth in a series of posts before the 50th anniversary of November 22nd, 1963, about that fateful day and the days afterward.

Click here for part one (Ruby’s mug shot, Oswald’s arrest warrant, the famous “cut out” photo, and telegrams calling Oswald a filthy tramp)

Click here for part two (Oswald after he was arrested, The grassy knoll statement, Oswald’s fake ID and the FBI investigating whether Ruby was gay)

Click here for part three (Ruby’s stripper girlfriend, Oswald’s Texas Theater seat, Ruby’s lawyer has a heart attack, and Frank Sinatara’s Drummer’s role in the events of the day)

Everything is from the City of Dallas’s file on the Kennedy assassination and the Oswald murder from online the City of Dallas achieves. Some are presented without comment other aren’t. Click on the images to enlarge them.

The Scene in the Jail’s Basemeant after Oswald was Shot

right after the shooting

Check out the guy in the top right, below the with the paper covering his mouth, almost looks like he’s smiling.  A conspiracy theorist would say he’s smiling cause he knows Oswald will now never talk.  But for most of us, it’s because he’s maybe a little happy that the man who killed the country’s President is now likely dead.

Two months after Ruby shot Oswald, he was evaluated by a Psychiatrist.  This is the first page of the evaluation.

psy evlu of rubyI’ll skip the boring details and head to the highlights.  He’s been knocked out numerous times including once by two Chicago cops, and once by a woman who hit him over the head with a jug of wine.  He had the tip of his index finger bitten off in another fight.  He’s had gonorrhea six of seven times, though he used protection by means of “fish skins.”

Oswald’s Wife and Mother get permission to visit him in jail, the day after he was arrested.

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Seriously think about this for a second. This guy is under arrest for murdering the President, and then his wife and mother just stroll on in roughly 24 hours later to visit, and it’s allowed.  In the present day, if someone was under arrest for murdering the President what are chances that his family can see him within the first week let alone first day.  Hell, Oswald was under arrest for murdering a police officer too, you think the murderer of a cop today would be allowed visitations within the first day.  Not sure if that say more about the justice system then or now.

Lastly, because this all comes from a City’s file, you have to find some bureaucratic processes.

A memo regarding revocation of Ruby’s Liquor license based on his recent actions after killing Oswald

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In Texas you have to have a license to sell liquor which Cities have to approve.  Ruby’s club had one, but within days of Ruby shooting Oswald, the police were asking to have that permit revoked.  If you’re wondering about that paragraph talking about Ruby not being “of good moral character or his reputation for being a peaceable, law-abiding citizen.”   Well that actually comes out the laws of the great state of Texas.  Where a man can be denied a liquor permit because “the applicant is not of good moral character or his reputation for being a peaceable, law-abiding citizen in the community where he resides is bad”

From the Kennedy Files Part III: Oswald’s Seat in the Texas Theater, Frank Sinatra’s Drummer and Ruby’s Strippers

The third in a series of posts before the 50th anniversary of November 22nd, 1963, about that fateful day and the days afterward.

Click here for part one (Ruby’s mug shot, Oswald’s arrest warrant, the famous “cut out” photo, and telegrams calling Oswald a filthy tramp)

Click here for part two (Oswald after he was arrested, The grassy knoll statement, Oswald’s fake ID and the FBI investigating whether Ruby was gay)

Everything is from the City of Dallas’s file on the Kennedy assassination and the Oswald murder from online the City of Dallas achieves.  Some are presented without comment other aren’t.  Click on the images to enlarge them.

Officer pointing to the seat where Oswald was captured

where oswald was arrested

Statement to Police regarding Ruby’s stripper “Little Lynn” regarding pimps and prostitutes

ruby's mistress

You really needs to click and read the statement, its great.  It’s a statement from an unnamed source with information about Karen Lynn Bennet.  Not sure which sentence is the best, either the one where police identify the woman as “…the stripper at Jack’s Ruby’s Club and the one arrested with a pistol at Ruby’s bond hearing.”  Or the one where the informant says he noted that several characters at the apartment which he believes are pimps and prostitutes are “…in and out of there all hours and their dress is not becoming at times.”  My heavens.

A drunken phone call from Iowa reveals real killer of Kennedy

frank sinatara's drummer killed kennedy

If you didn’t enlarge the picture to read it, i’ll quickly sum up.  In June of 1967 Dallas police received a call from Iowa, at 1:20 in the morning, from a man who was clearly drunk telling him he had information on Kennedy’s killer.  Clearly this phone call would only lead to credible information.  The man told police that the drummer in Frank Sinatra’s band shot Kennedy while standing in front of him in the parking lot of the Texas School Book Depository.  No word if Dallas police followed up on the tip.

Statement regarding Ruby’s attorney having a heart attack when he saw Ruby shoot Oswald

ruby's att heart attackRuby was having some tax issues, surprise he ran a night club/strip club, his attorney for the tax issues was out in California, when he saw Ruby shoot Oswald, he had a heart attack.