In March of 1873, Denison had its own Alamo. There was no battle and Davy Crockett didn’t have a thing to do with it. The exact location of the Alamo Hotel is a mystery to this writer except that it was “convenient to the Union Depot” as listed in an Alamo Hotel business card and in an advertisement on page one of the Oct. 20, 1874 edition of the Denison Daily News. From a picture that accompanies this column, it was on the north side of Main Street.
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“Our aim, nothing; our purpose, nothing; our inspiration, nothing; our motto, to learn more and more about less and less until eventually, we shall know everything about nothing!” — The Bonehead Club
A couple of weeks ago when Denison celebrated its first Doc Holliday Saints & Sinners Festival, we were honored to meet the Doc Holliday expert, Victoria Wilcox of Atlanta, Georgia. Everyone I have talked to who heard her presentation at the SNAP Center had good things to say about Victoria and her program.
I’m not sure that this fifth column in a series about Denison’s cemeteries will cover what I had hoped. Fairview, one of Denison’s oldest burial places with markers dating back to 1882, is so interesting that I may get a little carried away writing about it.
This is the fourth in a series of articles about Oakwood and other cemeteries in the area. I probably will write one more about later cemeteries unless someone comes up with some interesting stories about one of the many around Denison. There is no doubt that I will leave some out so I would appreciate an update after you read the column on any that I have missed.
During the past week or so, I have written two columns primarily about Dr. Lawrence Augustine Washington Jr., a great-nephew of George Washington, called the father of our country. Washington was buried in Denison’s oldest cemetery, Oakwood Cemetery.
Sunday I wrote about the Washingtons who are buried in Denison’s Oakwood Cemetery and that got me on a cemetery roll because there are some really interesting tombstones found there.
Armed only with a Jan. 15, 1967, page from “Texas Magazine” I began a search that has uncovered information that earned a Texas Historical Marker for the graves of a couple buried in Oakwood Cemetery.
Last week was a “coming home” of sorts for the late Joseph Clifton “J.C.” English, who was the last passenger agent on the Missouri, Kansas & Texas Railroad with an office here in the Katy Depot.
When I started writing the column about the dismantlement of Madonna Hospital for last Sunday’s Herald Democrat , I found very little information in my files. I knew there had to be more. And wouldn’t you know it, on Tuesday, after the column ran, I was searching for something else and found an entire binder filled with information on hospitals of Denison.
I have always thought it would be good to have a column or two in reserve for days that it was impossible to write a new one. This column seems to be the only one I have managed to have ready in a long time.
The remnant of Madonna Hospital that originally was Denison’s city hospital is almost gone. While there has been opposition to at least a couple of Denison’s demolition projects in recent years, this is one that the neighbors, at least, are glad to see disappear.
The plot has thickened concerning the George Denison whose name was taken by a very young Denison, Texas, back in 1872.
There is something about hearing old timers talk about “the good old days” that make the younger generation sometimes resent hearing about how things “used to be.”
While thumbing through columns and stories I had written in 1987 and 1988, I came across a column that was written on Aug. 14, 1988, that fits today’s political situation to a “T.” Here is a summation of some of the information provided to me by Gertrude Rushing.
Not many people alive today can remember going to the “dime” store and actually buying something for 10 cents.
Last week I was fortunate enough to be a guest at the 2016 Posey Leadership Award Convocation at Austin College, where Pulitzer Prize winning journalists Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn were honored.
This is the second column this month about women who helped form this area of North Texas or who made a name for themselves in their chosen career field. Most had no idea that they would be remembered many years after they made their mark in society.
Since I began writing about Denison’s history, I have read that the city’s namesake, George Denison, never paid a visit to the town. Now we read differently.
I’ve always heard the saying, “Behind every good man is a good woman.” That may be true, but some of these good women, just like good men, make it on their own. This being Historic Women Month, I’ve been thinking about some of the good women in this area’s past. There are quite a few, so it may take a couple of columns to talk about many of them.
In February 2002, I made what I call a historic trip with a trio of men following the Butterfield Overland Mail Stagecoach route across Red River and the area where Denison now stands.
Denison native Cassie Bryant Hay will be making her feature-film debut Friday with her first full-length documentary, “The Liberators,” chronicling the decadelong search for the Quendlinburg treasures, which were taken during the close of World War II from a cave in East Germany. The documentary was selected to premiere at the South by Southwest Film Conference and Festival beginning Friday in Austin.
A while back I wrote a paragraph in one of my columns asking for information about a Denison Canning Factory to answer a question sent to me by Steve Armstrong. Steve had found a picture on one of the old 1891 birdseye-view maps of Denison.
Lately, I seem to be doing a lot of rummaging through my keepsakes, including those from my parents and grandparents. My sources of storage are beginning to run over and I keep telling myself that I need to organize or discard at least some of it. For a packrat like me, it is hard to make that decision.
February is Black History Month every year and while Denison schools now are integrated, there is no difference in the educational facilities that are provided for everyone. This is the last day of February, but not the last column written about the black community. We will be running them whenever the occasion arises.
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