Unique Nail Salon is Granbury Texas was recommended to me by the nice lady who shared the shuttle van with me a week or so back. And she was so right. It was lovely. I paid the same price that I pay in Tacoma for a basic pedicure and I was offered a free drink (water, coke, wine or margarita!) The lady next to me whispered “they make a good margarita!” So, there we go! And it was good. And my pedicure was also very professional.
While on Granbury’s 4th Saturday Gallery tour I noticed this sculpture piece next to the Dora Lee Langdon Cultural & Educational Center at 308 East Pearl Street, Granbury, TX 76048. The piece is titled BiFocal Buddies and it is life size art by artist Art Blevins. At first glance I thought it was three near-sighted guys staring at a cat in a tree. In any case they must have left their glasses at home.
And here is a pretty picture of a tree with Lake Granbury in the Twilight.
The Lake Granbury Master Gardeners Demonstration Garden is a lovely blooming oasis even though the Texas heat wasn’t offering the most hospital environment. Those clever gardeners are well aware of their climate and have adapted to it. I was greeted by a cheerful volunteer who let me know that there was beauty to be had, even though the sun was drying everything up. And I did find beauty. There were some huge red flowers, a hobbit hole, a water feature, butterfly bushes with butterflies, a very wonderful arbor with squash (I guess it was squash) hanging from the top, plenty of honeybees, a cardinal, lots of art and darling walking paths. The Lake Granbury Master Gardeners work with the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service. I’d like to go back for a springtime visit!
In an attempt to avoid the Texas heat, today I went to the Dora Lee Langdon Cultural & Educational Center is located at 308 East Pearl Street, Granbury, TX 76048 in the AP Gordon House. The art exhibit that brought me in was a solo exhibit of Gene Gregory and I enjoyed his vibrant paintings. The property was constructed as the Gordon house in 1882 and is actually smaller than it had originally been since the owners “downsized” by removing some of the back of the building in 1956.
A list of all the historic Granbury properties can be found here.
Situated on Granbury’s Historic Square, the First National Bank (101 East Bridge Street) was constructed in 1883 and is an example of Italianate Victorian Commercial architecture. The building was constructed for its current use and more of the history can be found here. The entirety of the Granbury Square is designated a historic district and was named the best historic square in Texas.
And while I was there I took a picture of the wonderful courthouse.
There I was at the Granbury Post Office mailing some paperwork to my niece. Looking for something else to do, I stopped at the firefighter’s memorial and from there I could see a plane! OK, that’s cool. I backtracked down the road and through the open gate of the US Veteran’s Museum. Just past the building, which was closed, I found the plane. A gentleman in a riding mower came to check out my intentions and told me that the museum had been closed for about a year. I found out later it had moved to nearby Glen Rose. I let him know that I was harmless and just wanted to snap a couple of photos, which I did while circling the plane on foot. The google map showed the plane complete, however, the wings had been removed and were next to the rest of the plane on the ground and the tail was missing. Since the museum is closed, I won’t suggested anyone else going to visit though a locked gate and/or no trespassing sign would have prevented me for seeing this kind of great plane. The riding mower man made sure I actually left and good for him for watching out for the property.
There is some debate on the fate of John Wilks Booth. Most say he was killed by Federal soldiers who had tracked him down at the Garrett Farm.
But the more interesting theory is that the wrong man was killed at Garrett Farm, Booth escaped to Granbury, TX, changed his name to John St. Helen and tended bar in what is now the Nutshell Cafe. While extremely sick, St. Helen made a death bed confession, but then he recovered. Since his story was then out there, he needed to leave town. He went to Enid, Oklahoma where he committed suicide. A book, Escape and Suicide of John Wilkes Booth by Finis Bates, was written about this (that part is for sure true). Bates later gained control of St. Helen/Booth’s body and exhibited in carnival sideshows.
So, that explains where there is a mural featuring John Wilks Booth next to his wanted poster and near a picture of Lincoln. The mural also features the Lady in Red, who was suppose to be the love of Booth’s life. And on the other wall is Davy Crockett. The Nutshell Cafe is reportedly haunted by the Lady in Red with her boyfriend, Booth, supposedly haunts the adjacent Granbury Opera House.
On a lighter note, I found the coffee to be good at the Nutshell Cafe and would be glad to go back to try the ice cream.
Catching up from the Texas trip.
A dear friend of the family and I had a summer goal of finding the alleged grave of Jesse James in the Granbury Cemetery. We had tried last summer, but had no luck in the approaching dark. This time we set out in early evening and found Jessie’s grave, as well as Granbury’s grave and the burial site of an amputated arm.
Granbury (sometimes seen as Granberry) is the namesake of the town. As far as I can tell he never lived in Granbury, but his body was exhumed (for the second time) and buried here. There is also a gravesite for his wife, Fannie Granbury, though she isn’t buried there. She died at the young age of 25 and is in an unmarked grave in Alabama which is where she died of natural causes.
The buried arm is that of W. H. Holland who lost his arm in a childhood accident on November 16, 1895. The rest of Mr. Holland died sometime later and is buried elsewhere in the cemetery. The photo that shows that is of three above ground tombs. The arm is in the middle and there are infants to either side.
History tells us that the outlaw Jesse James was killed by a member of his gang in 1882 for the reward money. However, relatives of James say that his death was faked and it is really somebody else buried in Missouri in a grave labeled Jessie James. The story goes that James was even a pallbearer at his own funeral! James took the alias of J. Frank Dalton and settled in Granbury eventually passing away in 1951 at the age of 103. Apparently toward the end of his life he even confessed. At the bottom of his headstone (look hard!) it says “supposedly killed in 1882”.
Haunted Granbury by Brandy Herr is full of interesting stories and well worth reading.
Paradise Bistro & Coffee opened on the Granbury Square in 2012, I stopped by for some relief from the heat and an iced coffee and slice of lemon cake. It was really a treat and I happily spent some time there reading my book. On the way out, I was given a ‘to go’ cup with ice water. They do understand that dehydration is a problem here in Texas! The website for the bistro is here.
The business is located in the two story masonry Harris Building, which was constructed in 1899 by local stonemason, I. W. Walley. It was originally occupied by a furniture store, It has a cast iron storefront.