Sunday, October 13, 2013


I realize I haven't posted in 6 months or so.  I've been busy, and Instagram has been an easier media.

But I'll work on my backlog of locations soon.  In the mean time, click here to see my latest stuff.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

A lonely, but famous bridge

The Regency Suspension Bridge.  Located in Mills County, deep in the Hill Country, over the Colorado River.  You can see this bridge in the opening sequence of The Texas Country Reporter, when host Bob Phillips drives across.  I did drive across, knowing that my hybrid weighs a lot less than Bob Phillips' SUV.

Looking east.

Looking west.

For some reason, the historical marker for the bridge is Goldthwaite, 20 miles away from the bridge.

Monday, April 29, 2013

The Ruins of San Fernando Academy in Pontotoc, TX

Located in the North Hill Country, in Mason County, Pontotoc is a historic little town with some fascinating ruins.   Here's what the Texas State Historical Association has to say about it:

Pontotoc is at the junction of State Highway 71 and Farm Road 501, near Pontotoc Creek in the northeastern corner of Mason County. The spot was formerly the junction of the roads leading from Llano and Fort Mason to San Saba. Early settlers began arriving in the 1850s. Benjamin J. Willis moved into the area in 1859 along with four or five other families, and by 1878 the community was well established. M. Robert Kidd is said to have named the town after his former home, Pontotoc, Mississippi. Kidd also opened the town's first business, a general store. The first post office was established in the home of Benjamin Willis in 1880 with Ellen Willis as postmistress. Pontotoc once promised to be a large town. The founding of the San Fernando Academy in 1882, which at times had as many as 200 students, drew people to the area. By 1886 the community had four stores, and by 1890 it had two doctors and more than twenty businesses, including general stores, a market, a gin and mill, several saddle and harness shops, a blacksmith shop, and a hotel. The main products of the community included cotton, wool, cattle hides, and pecans. A typhoid fever epidemic nearly wiped out the town in 1887. The town cemetery became so full that it had to be closed in 1888, and a new one was established. In 1890 there was a move to found a new county called Mineral County out of parts of McCulloch, Mason, San Saba, and Llano counties, with Pontotoc as the county seat. Mason residents petitioned against the action, however, and the movement failed. Many attempts were made to get a railroad through the community, but each of three proposed railroad lines missed the town by a few miles. This and the closing of San Fernando Academy in 1890 caused the town's prosperity to decline. The academy building was bought by the Pontotoc public school in 1889 and continued to be used until 1927. Pontotoc had a newspaper, the Country News, founded by D. C. Boyles in 1906 and published by him, but it was short-lived. Telephone service was established in the community by 1914. The estimated population was 196 in 1904 and rose to 300 during the 1920s, possibly due to a nearby mica mine started by J. L. Anderson and J. G. McNaughton in 1924. The mica was shipped to the Ford Mica Company in New York. By 1941 Pontotoc had seven businesses and an estimated population of 196. In August 1947 five of the town's commercial buildings were gutted by a fire that started in a theater owned by Steve Fickling. Although some of the stores were rebuilt, the incident hurt the town's commerce. The population held steady at an estimated 196 from 1933 to 1967. It rose to 206 in 1968 and remained at that level in the mid-1980s. As of 1985 Pontotoc had a post office, a well-service shop, a flea market, a cafe, and a volunteer fire department. The community club included an annual barbecue among its activities, and the local newspaper was the Pontotoc Enterprise. The population in 1990 was 125. The population remained the same in 2000.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Welcome to Mozelle, TX

Located in Coleman County, Mozelle is a lonely little ghost town with only a school complex and and old filling station left.  Above is the main high school building.

The gymnasium

This was the home economics building.

And, in it's hey day (from a 1945 yearbook):

Monday, April 8, 2013

Mosheim School

Located in Bosque County, Mosheim doesn't have much left except a shell of a school.  I can't find much about the history of the school.  So just enjoy the ruins. 

More exterior shots

Interior shots:


"Courtyard" shots:

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Old Nazerene Hospital, Mineral Wells

The Old Nazerene Hospital, on 4th Street, is fairly mysterious.  It opened in 1931 and was run by nuns, who lived on the top floor.  It had 46 beds, and stayed open until the mid 1960s.  It's not clear what's been going on there since it closed.

"Is it just me, or that an ominous looking chimney?"

"Oh shit!  Is this the morgue?!"

And, in it's heyday:

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Welcome to Ireland, Texas!

Yep.  This is it.  Completely deserted and silent, except for some gunshots echoing in the distance.  Here's what the TSHA has to say about it:

 Ireland is on Farm Road 932 sixteen miles northwest of Gatesville in northwestern Coryell County. It was first known as Hamco because of its location on the Hamilton-Coryell county line, but in 1911, with the completion of the Stephenville North and South Texas Railway, residents applied for a post office in the name of Ireland, in honor of Governor John Ireland. The Ireland community reached its peak in the 1920s, when it had three general stores, three churches, a bank, several other businesses, and a population of 400. When the railroad was abandoned in the early 1940s, the community declined rapidly; by the late 1940s it had only forty residents. By 1970 the post office at Ireland had become a rural branch of the Gatesville postal service. The community reported a population of sixty in 1990. The population remained unchanged in 2000.

Was this a jail? The only surviving brick structure.

Several signs for the cemetery...

Turns out, we never could find it.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Welcome to Carlton, Texas!

Literally out in the middle of nowhere, Carlton used to be tiny, but populated cotton town in Hamilton County.  Those days are gone.  And this is all that's left.

This was obviously a filling station.  Nothing else was discernible though.