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DO NOT JUDGE BY THE LOOK,

IT SELLS BEST CHILI DOGS IN STUDY BUTTE, TEXAS.

 

 

TERLINGUA, TEXAS

(OLD SILVER MINING SITE)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ABANDONED SILVER MINING SITE

 

 

LAJITAS, TEXAS

 

 

OLD SALOON WHERE PANCHO VILLA AND HIS GANG

LED RAIDS ACROSS THE RIO GRANDE.

 

 

BULLET HOLES LEFT BY PANCHO VILLA AND HIS GANG

 

 

 

 

CUTE REST AREA ON HIGHWAY 170 BETWEEN LAJITAS AND PRESIDIO, TEXAS

 

 

 

 

 

SHAFTER, TEXAS (GHOST TOWN)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MARFA, TEXAS

 

Presidio County Courthouse

This three-story Empire-revival building was constructed in 1886 at the cost of $60,000.  The structure of the building is made of hand-made bricks from a local ranch.  Before its construction, the county seat for the area was in Fort Davis, but a determined lobbying group and some questionable political maneuvers allowed the town of Marfa to house the seat of government.  The structure still serves as permanent facilities for much of the county government.

The courthouse has been described as having a rectangular plan with four corner towers and Mansard roofs all surrounding an imposing Brunelleschi-like dome clad in tin. A large white statue of Lady Justice tops the tower and can be seen from much of the town. The interior is grand in proportion and detailed with rich woodworking. . An extensive renovation was completed in January 2002. Open to the public for viewing. Inquire at the courthouse.

 

 

The El Paisano Hotel

was built in 1930. Initiated by the Gateway Hotel chain of El Paso, Texas, architect Henry Trost was asked to design the 60 room hotel in the Spanish Colonial style. Ornate ceramic tile and wrought ironwork adorn the interior and exterior of the building. The El Paisano Hotel became part of legend when the 1950ís film Giant came to the town of Marfa. It was used as a backdrop for scenes of the film that starred Elizabeth Taylor, Rock Hudson and James Dean. The hotel restaurant, bar and swimming pool also became a meeting place for the cast and crew during their stay. In 2001, the hotel was bought by the owners of the Limpia Hotel in Fort Davis and has recently been restored. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE ORIGINAL REATA RESTAURANT IN ALPINE, TEXAS

 

 

The marfa lights

the Marfa Lights are named for their location near the town of Marfa, Texas. Marfa is a small ranching community on a Chihuahuan Desert plateau in the Trans-Pecos area of west Texas. Supported mostly by ranching, and more recently by tourism, it is surrounded by vast mountains and is Texas' highest incorporated city. Marfa is known primarily for its famous Marfa Mystery Lights and as the location for the shooting of the classic movie "Giant," with Rock Hudson, Elizabeth Taylor, Dennis Hopper and James Dean.

The Ghost lights of Marfa still shine as bright as ever, and are still as mysterious as they were when they were first seen by early settlers who drove their herds into the Marfa area in 1883.

Who can explain their source? Where are they actually located? How long have they been in existence? The mystery is no closer to being solved now than when they were first seen.

Robert Ellison came to Marfa in 1883 and off-loaded his cattle in Alpine. He then drove the herd west and on the second night out, while camped just outside Paisano Pass, he saw strange lights in the distance. At first, it was feared that they were Apache signal fires. Mr. Ellison searched the countryside by horseback. He finally realized that the lights were not man-made. Other early settlers assured him that they too had seen the lights and had never been able to identify them.

The Marfa Lights are reported to be from 1-10 feet in diameter. They are spherical and reddish-orange in color. They have been observed to vary their size and fly at high speeds. Numerous photographs and video footage have captured these lights in action. Marfa Lights are generally considered harmless. They are even rumored to have helped a lost man during a blizzard by providing warmth and guiding him home.

The ghost lights appear in many different ways to different people. Some swear they have seen them divide to form separate balls of light. Others claim that they have seen them move up and down. All agree that they glow as softly as a star at times, then brighten to the intensity of a stoplight. Sometimes they pop off and on. As they fade they seem to be receding. There are verifiable accounts of people being pursued by the lights.

Scientists have made numerous attempts to put the mystery to rest. In 1947, Fritz Kahl, a local war veteran and pilot, chased the Lights in an airplane, but came up empty. In 1975, Kahl made another attempt, this time with a team that included observers in Jeeps and planes. The "Marfa Ghost Light Hunt," as it was called, featured "more than a hundred carloads of observers gathered between the two observation points, one at Paisano Pass and the other at the entrance to the old Presidio County Airport," according to the Sul Ross "Skyline" newspaper. The searchers, "utilizing aircraft, survey instruments, multi-band radio equipment and about a half-dozen search teams," were no more successful than Kahl had been in his solo search of '47, and the legend grew.

Some believe that the lights are nothing more than high-powered lights from area ranches or the reflected headlights from nearby cars and trucks, but that doesn't explain why the Lights have been reported since before electricity or vehicles ever reached the Big Bend area. Nor does it explain why there have been reports of observers hearing a high-pitched, "tuning fork" noise in only one ear while watching the Lights.

A Marfa lights viewing site has been provided for the public on Highway 90, by the Texas Highway department. It is located nine miles east of Marfa. Ghost light watchers can park in the area and scan the south-western horizon, looking toward Chinati Peak. Using a distant red tower light as a marker, one can be certain that any light to the right of the marker, which appears and disappears, is a Marfa ghost light. You will know them when you see them. There is no mistaking them.

 

 

 

OLD PICTURES OF MARFA LIGHTS BY OTHERS

 

 

 

WE WAITED AND WAITED.  WE DID NOT SEE ANY.  WRONG TIMING?

HOWEVER, BY ACCIDENT, SARA TOOK THIS PICTURE --

MYSTERY LIGHT (ORB AT RIGHT), IS IT?

 

 

THE REATA RUINS -- "GIANT" MOVIE SITE IN 1956

(9 miles east of Valentine, Texas)

WE FOUND ONLY ONE ENTRANCE TO THE SITE. IT WAS

RYAN RANCH.  DRIVING ON THE DIRT ROAD FOR MILES

AND MILES, WE GAVE UP.

THAT PICTURE WAS TAKEN

A LONG TIME AGO.

IT SHOULD LOOK LIKE THIS NOW.

 

Giant is a 1956 drama film and was directed by George Stevens. The movie was adapted by Fred Guiol and Ivan Moffat from the novel by Edna Ferber. It stars Elizabeth Taylor, Rock Hudson, James Dean, Carroll Baker, Jane Withers, Chill Wills, Mercedes MCCambridge, Dennis Hopper, Sal Mineo, Rod Taylor and Earl Holliman. Giant was the last of James Dean's three films as a leading actor. The film earned James Dean his second and last Academy Award nomination, of three starring roles. He died before Giant was released. Nick Adams was called in to do some voice-over dubbing for Dean's role.

 

 

 

WHAT IS IT?

 

 

McDONALD OBSERVATORY

 

 

 

 

 

fort davis, texas

set in the rugged beauty of the Davis Mountains of west Texas, Fort Davis is one of America's best surviving examples of an Indian Wars' frontier military post in the Southwest. From 1854 to 1891, Fort Davis was strategically located to protect emigrants, mail coaches, and freight wagons on the Trans-Pecos portion of the San Antonio-El Paso Road and the Chihuahua Trail, and to control activities on the southern stem of the Great Comanche War Trail and Mescalero Apache war trails. Fort Davis is important in understanding the presence of African Americans in the West and in the frontier military because the 24th and 25th U.S. Infantry and the 9th and 10th U.S. Cavalry, all-black regiments established after the Civil War, were stationed at the post.

Today, twenty-four roofed buildings and over 100 ruins and foundations are part of Fort Davis National Historic Site. Five of the historic buildings have been refurnished to the 1880s, making it easy for visitors to envision themselves being at the fort at the height of its development.

Fort Davis National Historic Site was authorized as a unit of the National Park System in 1961.

 

 

 

 

Historic Photograph Looking South with Chapel

to the left of Flagstaff (c. 1886)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FORT STOCKTON, TEXAS

 

A very popular photo subject: At 20 feet long and 11 feet tall,

Pete is probably the world's largest roadrunner!

 

 

 

 

The Adobe Hotel, built in 1900, now houses the Annie Riggs Memorial

Museum.  This adobe block building housed a hotel managed

by Annie Riggs until her death in 1931. The 14 rooms now house

a collection of clothing, photographs, Indian artifacts,

religious objects, and much more.

 

 

 

 

 

Typical frontier military post established in 1859, and abandoned

in 1886.  Many original buildings of adobe and hand hewn

limestone still stand.

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That's all, Folks!