MINERAL WELLS, TEXAS
"WHAT'S THAT BIG HOTEL DOING HERE?"
This now-abandoned monster is called the Baker Hotel. It is 14 stories high and has 460 rooms. It was designed after the Arlington Hotel in Hot Springs, Arkansas, which is still operating today. The Baker was built between 1926 and 1929. Among its guests have been Lawrence Welk, Judy Garland, Guy Lombardo, Clark Gable, The Three Stooges, Roy Rogers, Dale Evens, and even Bonnie and Clyde, who stayed there under an alias. It had the first structured above ground swimming pool in Texas.
T.B. Baker, a wealthy local businessman, spent $1,250,000 to build the famous hotel. The last guest checked out in 1972 and the Baker quickly began to deteriorate. It was placed on the National register of Historic Places in 1982, and is still for sale today.
"THE ROAD TO MINERAL WELLS"
MINERAL WELLS IS IN NORTH TEXAS, due west of Fort Worth about 45 or 50 miles. It lies at the intersection of highways 180 and 281. We came up from the Austin area on 281 (an excellent road in 2007).
PICTURED IS THE POST OFFICE at Mineral Wells, Texas. The medicinal qualities of the waters made the town famous in the late 1800k's and early 1900's. Maybe that's why the hotel was built????? the altitude is 925 ft. above sea level.
The Mineral Wells Chamber of Commerce is located at 511 East Hubbard. You can call them at 800-252-MWTX or 940/325/2557.