In 1919, the stockholders of the old college property voted unanimously to donate the grounds and buildings for use by Salado Public Schools. The ageing facility served the public school system until 1924, when a third fire destroyed the building, as discussed earlier. The community was in desperate need of a modern schoolhouse. Alice Joy Hamblen, the widow of William K. Hamblen, came to the rescue with a generous donation. The donation included the old Hamblen family home, demolished to make room for the new brick facility that was constructed in 1924. After many years of use as a school, in 1969 it ceased to be use as a public school. The community restored the building and used it as Salado's Civic Center. Today it houses the offices of the school district. The building is located at Main Street and Van Bibber Lane. (SHSL)
The Davis House, built ca. 1874 on Main Street, has developed from an original , double-pen log structure into the almost random plan of today. It even incorporated a small frame store that was moved up the hill from the creek and attached in 1900. Another addition was completed in 1920. One of the mantels has a carved star placed on it that is original to the house. Today it is a coffee shop. (NRHP)
Built in 1878, this building is the top half of the original First Baptist Church. The church met on the first floor and the lodge met on the second floor. It was sawed off and moved to Church St. where it is Masonic Lodge 296 AF&AM. The lodge was formed June 13, 1867 and has been active ever since. (NRHP, SHSL)
Built in 1871, the house is named for its two most prominent occupants: John Hendrickson and William J. Caskey. John Hendrickson was a stone mason active in building the first Texas State Capitol in 1853, Salado College, Barton House, Twelve Oaks, and Salado’s cable suspension foot bridge.
In 1882 William Caskey and wife moved to Salado for their children’s education at Salado College. William was active in establishing Thomas Arnold High School, a member of the Salado Grange #1, and a Mason. First Baptist Church used this building as their parsonage. until 1924. It was completely restored. (NRHP)
On this site in 1861 - 65 the William R. Alexander Distillery met a wartime need in Texas when Governor Lubbock closed all Texas distilleries, to save grain. Army calls for medicinal liquor (for opiate and stimulant purposes) soon caused him to order a few, including Alexander’s, re-opened. In drastic medical shortages, Texans throughout the Civil War gave such help as they could. Bandages, sewing silk, lint, polk weed, peach bark, barilla and other home medical aids went to various military units. ( RTHL )
Built by Moses H. Denman in 1867. Originally built in Sparta, 15 miles NW of Salado. In 1955, it was restored at Belton, moved to Troy, then to Salado. The Robert Denman family donated the cabin to the Salado Historical Society. The cabin is constructed of hand hewn square cedar logs joined by wooden pegs. The fireplace is of native stone. It is furnished as it would appear in frontier times but not original to the cabin. (RTHL)
Great-granddaughter of builders. Daughter of Thomas S. and Mary Elizabeth (Robertson) Sutherland. First women vice president of student body, University of Texas. Married Leslie Carpenter: has two children. In 1954 was president Women’s National Press Club. First women ever to serve as executive assistant to the vice president of the United State, 1961. First newswoman to be staff director and press secretary to first lady, Mrs. Lyndon B. Johnson. Location: 3/4 mi. SW of Salado Post Office, Salado ( RTHL )
The W.R. Berry home was built in 1870 by J.W. Vickrey out of cut rock blocks, the walls being 20 inches thick. It was two stories high. At the turn of the century the rock on three quarters of the house, but not the foundation, was removed to be used on some of Mr. Berry’s buildings, the most notable being the Salado Bank, which was built exclusively with rock from the W.R. Berry residence. The remaining rock walls were extended to the one story cypress house now in use.
Location: Main Street. ( RTHL )
Founded in March 1859, this Church of Christ congregation first met in a brush arbor on the north bank of Salado Creek. The first two elders were James Anderson and J.W. Vickrey, both of whom were instrumental in the organization of Salado College. A frame sanctuary, erected on North Main Street in 1875 was destroyed by fire in 1908. A second frame structure served the congregation until 1961, when it was replaced by a brick sanctuary. A new building was erected in 1988. This church has served the people of Salado for over a century.
( RTHL, SHSL)
Gushing limestone springs, abundant fish, flowers and trees have made the banks of Salado Creek a good home site. Indians camped beside stream; Spanish explorers names it. The first Anglo-American settler was Archibald Willingham in 1851 built a log cabin. The College and town of Salado were built on creek in 1860. The creek once had 8 mills, thus was the county industrial center. Chisholm Cattle Trail crossed it, as did Dallas--San Antonio stage line. The 35 - mile creek is one of many which rise at the Balcones Fault - an outstanding North American region of springs. ( RTHL)
Dodd’s Creek Lenticular Truss Bridge. One of many patented truss designs developed in the mid- to late-19th century, this 87-foot lenticular truss bridge features a curved top and bottom chord which forms a lens shape. This bridge originally was located across Cowhouse Creek and later was moved to Dodd's Creek. In 1990 the Texas Historical Commission and the Texas Department of Transportation recognized the bridge as a historically significant engineering structure. The Dodd's Creek bridge was moved to this site (Campbell Branch) in 1997 to improve the flow of traffic, protect pedestrians and enhance the Salado Historic District. ( RTHL)
The First Baptist Church congregation was formed in Salado in 1864. In 1878, the First Baptist Church built a two-story wooden structure that was shared by the local Masonic Lodge 296, AF&AM. The land was donated by O.T.Tyler who lived next door. In the original building, the Baptists met on the first floor and the Masons met on the second floor. The second floor was literally sawed off and moved to Church St. where the Masonic Lodge 296 now meets. The lower half was torn down. Two other markers are at the church: Louisa Adeline (Addie) Barton, missionary to Mexico: and Kate and Zachary Taylor, missionaries to Brazil. ( RTHL
The site of the Hamblen homestead is now the site of the administrative offices of Salado Independent School District and Civic Center. A house was built on this site by William & Alice Hamblen in 1868. William was a trustee of Salado College for 20 years. After William died, Alice Hamblen donated the family homestead and 4.6 acres for the site of a new public school in 1924. The home was torn down for the school building that now stands in its place. It was used as a school until 1969. The Hamblen family cemetery is located behind the school. ( RTHL )
Vickrey-Berry Carriage Barn and house were built about 1870 by John W. Vickrey. Eighteen years later William M. Berry purchased the two story rock house and barn. Between the house and barn was a windmill and raised water tank. In later years the barn was referred to as a carriage house for good reason. It was upscale compared to the average outbuilding of its day and has large double doors to accommodate Mr. Berry’s hearse. The carriage house was not used as a funeral home as rumor had it. Mr. Berry sold caskets from the second story of in his mercantile store across Salado Creek. (SHSL)
Crossing the Salado Creek has always been a challenge for early day residents of Salado and a daily challenge for students attending Salado College. Crossing was done be stepping across the creek on strategically places rocks. Then came logs chained to those rocks to keep the feet dry when crossing, however, heavy rains washed the logs away. In 1868 enough money was raised for a wire cable suspension foot-bridge which served the people for thirty years. Then in 1892 the county built an iron wagon-foot bridge. After a flood destroyed it, a duplicate bridge was built which was also destroyed. Finally, in 1922 the current concrete bridge was completed with reinforced steel set into the rock bed. Creek flooding has been over the bridge many times since then. ( RTHL )
This is the site of the old Salado First State Bank that was built from rock taken from the Vickrey-Berry home on Main Street. After the bank closed, the building was abandoned. In 1962, a former New York model, Grace Rosanky Jones, purchased the old bank building and began renovation for what later became a celebrated upscale dress shop named Grace Jones. It offered the finest in fashion from New York, Paris, and Milan, attracting customers from throughout the United States. Today, it is a retail shop. (SHSL)
Boles-Aiken Log Cabin is two rooms built in the 1850s. It was discovered inside an old home in Salado in March 1986 when it was being torn down. It was dismantled and stored for 4 years until 1990, when the Salado Historical Society re-constructed it on the present site and restored it to its present condition. Much of the original materials of the cabin was saved and used in the reconstructed cabin, the flooring, chimney and fireplace, logs and rock foundation. An archeological excavation revealed artifacts from the 1840s into the late 1950s. Records show tax was paid on the cabin in 1851 when it was on a stagecoach route that carried mail from Austin to Waco. The house built around the two room log cabin was occupied until 1984. The cabin is named for its first two owners Benjamin Boles and Hermon Aiken. (SHSL)
The Guest and Sanford grain storage property was purchased for $200 in 1957. Earl Guest and Paul Sanford built a grain storage building on the property in 1958 to store government grain purchased from local farmers. The grain storage building was built with a tin exterior and wooden planks on the inside walls. It had an aeration system to stabilize moisture and heat. The interior lumber is all original. The building’s capacity was 2,250,000 lbs. of grain. The building was renovated for use as a theater (Silver Spur). And, again renovated for the Barrow Brewing Co., serving excellent craft beer. (SHSL)
In 1860, the historic Rock Building was built as part of the James B. Anderson home next door. It was built of hand cut limestone. The fireplace, ceiling rafters and front doors are original. The side room was added in 1985 of old lumber. It was first used by Anderson as his office when he was Justice of the Peace. Over the years the building has been used as a variety of stores, law office, bootmaker, stagecoach stop, livery stable, and only saloon ever in Salado. In 1882, the building was leased for a saloon. When the ladies of the community found out they felt the moral, cultural, and religious foundations of Salado would be eroded. The men did not see a saloon that way and did nothing. The ladies developed a strategy and two at a time sat in front of the saloon when it opened knitting all day. The result was no one entered the saloon. The owner was so angry he packed up and moved to Holland where he opened the “Salado Saloon” out of spite for what the ladies of Salado did to him. (RTHL with house next door)
Salado has one of the last Cattle Dipping Vats in Texas. The need for dipping vats arose from cattle dying from protozoa (ticks) carried on the backs of longhorns that swam the Rio Grande from Mexico. In1888 the cause of “Texas Fever” was discovered. In 1889, a solution to dip cattle in a lime/sulfur mixture was discovered. In 1892, the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture stopped the shipment of cattle from Texas. This devastated the cattle industry. To combat the ticks, vats were built that were 30 ft. long, 2.5 ft. wide and 7 ft. deep. Beaumont Crude was put in the vats until a refined mixture of arsenic. soda and pine tar was developed and used until 1980. Many vats were destroyed by people opposed to dipping cattle. (SHSL)
The Stagecoach Inn log cabin was built two miles west of this site on a ranch in the 1800s. In the 1930s a family lived in it when working on the ranch. In 1934, it was given to the owners of the Stagecoach Inn who used it as a restaurant. At that time the cabin was on Highway 81, right in front of the cabin. Meals were 35 cents and consisted of “depression food” served family style. The menu was fried fish/chicken, black-eyed peas and other homemade dishes. Through the years it has been used as a variety of shops. When the Dion Van Bibber owned the Inn, it was his office. In the 1980s, the cabin was a gift shop. The current owners do not have plans for its use. (SHSL)