Ryan took Friday off so we could spend some time together. We both felt like driving somewhere, getting out of town. Our first stop, Herds Burgers. Ryan is constantly doing research on the best food around and he had read several reviews all saying Herds Burgers were the best in Texas. Some saying a Herd burger was better than the many we hold high on our list. So we thought this would be well worth the drive to taste one. Herds burger is in the middle of no where, Jacksboro, TX . Jacksboro is an hour and half northwest of Ft. Worth. Unfortunately the burger was not the best in Texas, a very hard achievement in Texas because there are so many really good burgers here.
Next stop on our list was Mineral Wells TX. Mineral Wells is a small town west of Fort Worth with a fascinating history. James Alvis Lynch and his family founded Mineral Wells in 1877. Both him and his wife were very sick, and after drinking water from their well they claimed to have felt better. Rumors spread and the Lynch family well became a destination for people suffering from all kinds of sickness. Many more wells were made and are still around today. The Crazy Well received its name because, the story goes, "a demented elderly lady drank from the Crazy Well twice every day and overcame her illness. The crazy lady story could well be true, because in Mineral Wells most of the mineral water wells have a significant amount of lithium, which is used to treat various mental and mood disorders today." Now for the reason why we actually drove to Mineral Wells... "Mr. T.B. Baker, hotel entrepreneur, saw a chance to cash in on the thousands of tourists coming to Mineral Wells to drink and bathe in the local mineral water. So he built the Baker Hotel in 1929. The Baker reigned supreme for 25 years as one of the nation’s most glamorous hotels. It had been described as a city in itself. Consisting of 14 floors and 450 rooms, the Baker offered the very finest in resort hotel services. The second floor contained many conveniences for the hotel guests, such as a doctor’s office, beauty parlor, exercise room, steam room, and bath department, with its mineral baths and massages by trained professionals. The hotel also provided a private elevator for guests to use if they chose to go to and from treatments in robe and slippers. Other amenities available in the hotel were a private club, complete with dinning and dancing, a drugstore, shopping area, barber shop, a mineral water drinking pavilion and babysitting services. A social hostess greeted the guests as they arrived. She would ask if they liked to play bridge or other card games, and would arrange for like-minded people to get together. There was bingo every night on the West Terrace, dancing in the ballroom, sunbathing in the garden and swimming in the huge outdoor pool." This hotel was the "in" spot for the rich and the famous. It was not til the 60s that this all came to an end, with setbacks in the resort industry and an advancement in the medical field the hotel closed its doors. This is all so fascinating to me, and its funny because what used to be so desirable is a ghost town, literally. They say this hotel is now haunted because all the sick people that died in Mineral Wells and Mr. Baker's mistress is said to reside on the 7th floor of the Hotel. It is sad too, it is such a beautiful building and now it is rotting away. It is for sale if you want to buy it.
The front entrance to the Hotel.