Texas Gothic: Fame, Crime & Crazy Water by James Pylant

Texas Gothic

I thoroughly enjoyed this book! Of course, I also grew up in Mineral Wells, being born the year the Hexagon was tragically torn down.

James Pylant has written a masterpiece, in my opinion. This doesn’t read like a “history” book at all, yet it truly is. What I really like about the way Pylant put this together is that it could almost be a series of short stories that revolve around the same, central characters. I was delighted to read of the crazy antics (and I believe “crazy” just might be literal) of Corine Griffith, the most famous person to ever come out of Mineral Wells (although Carolyn Jones had some ties to MW, as well).

I was also astonished to find that there are actually ties between Mineral Wells and the Washington Redskins! Never knew that before! Corinne Griffith married George Preston Marshall, who was part owner of a NFL team that was, at the time, named the Boston Braves (Pylant calls them the “Chiefs,” but I can’t find any other documentation of that . . . the team’s website says they were the “Braves”). When Marshall became full owner, the name was changed to Redskins, partly because they shared Fenway Park with the Red Sox. Later, Corinne is alleged to have convinced Marshall to move the team to his home of DC, where they became the Washington Redskins.

There are pictures, galore, in the book. Many, of course, of the iconic Baker Hotel, as well as the Crazy Hotel, the Hexagon, and other houses and places in the town. I even found that my childhood piano teacher had a hand in renovating the home of some of the founders of the town!

It was a very informative book about my home town of Mineral Wells, Texas, and I applaud James Pylant for writing it.

TTFN, y’all!

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