It never got above 95 degrees, typical fall weather for this time of year.
Early this morning, before dawn, puttering noises could be heard all around the two host hotels needed for this large group. Windshields were cleaned, radiators topped off, gas tanks filled and tires checked. Then suddenly it was time for the driver's meeting.
The hotel location is nearly ideal by Texas standards. It is right next to The Oasis, a combination Bar - B - Que restaurant / gun store, and across the street from a liquor store and a gas station. It does not get much better than that!
The drivers meeting in the Hampton hotel portico is where you get the details of what to watch out for and what we are having for lunch. This many Model T people and this many Model T's have to have a great time no matter what happens.
This is John Anderson telling David Harris exactly how that cow ate that cabbage.
Meanwhile not everyone is interested in the meeting. A lot of us are looking at Model T's of all years and body styles.
9:00 AM and we got on the road towards the first destination of the day. Just outside of town we came upon a group of T Party veterans working on a flat tire. That was done before you could think about it too much.
First stop of the day was Fort Clark, near Bracketville, TX. The fort was a frontier outpost until it closed just after World War II. It is still out in the frontier, about 50 miles west of Uvalde.
I checked out the portable jail cell, able to be used on the battlefield if necessary. Seemed like a sound enough design.
Fort Clark is notable for many reasons, but the one that I think is most notable is the commander of the Fort just prior to WWII, Brigadier General Jonathan Mayhew "Skinny" Wainwright IV.
Wainwright was transferred to Fort Corregidor on the Phillipine islands and promoted to Major General, temporary. This was the site of the first major American defeat of WWII, with Wainwright and his troops fighting courageously until they were out of food and ammunition. The Japanese made all the captured prisoners, including Wainwright, march for miles and days without food or water. This became known as the Bataan death march.
Wainwright's service prompted him to be nominated for the Congressional Medal of Honor, which he finally received at wars end, over the objections of his commanding officer Douglas McArthur.
Lunch was at the golf course club house on the Fort grounds. They provided a tasty BLT box lunch, ice tea, and chips.
Outside the restaurant was the first casualty on the vulture wagon, 50 miles from the hotel.
Royce,I wonder if the DOT person had a bad night what they thought of the lighting acc tank?? Nice pictures,and thank you.Bud.
Our next stop was another 20 miles up the road. It appears to be the site of one of the most famous battles in the history of Texas. In fact, it is the remains of the most famous movie made not to document that battle, but to entertain folks who had a dollar and the afternoon off.
This year marks the 55th anniversary of John Wayne's favorite movie, The Alamo released in 1960. We went to Alamo Village to see the set and old west film town next door. It was at the same time fantastic and sad, because the site is crumbling into the desert.
The Alamo portion of the site was built in 1957 - 58.
By this time, sadly, all three vulture wagons had a victim on board.
We moved over to the old western town, site of numerous movies, commercials, and TV series. Lonesome Dove was filmed here. Jimmy Stewart played a shady old west lawyer here. Dean Martin played a gambler who almost got hung here. The Energizer bunny sold a few batteries.
I caught Bill Sherrill taking a selfie in the bar where Dean Martin filmed a scene.
The dusty road home lay ahead of us, and we had 40 plus miles to go.
On the way we stopped at a low water crossing that was next to a modern highway bridge. Unfortunately the low water bridge was completely out of water, due to the heat and drought in the area recently.
Alamo group shot
Cooling off in the Nueces River at Chalk Bluff.
Debbie and Betty
Grate pictures makes me wish I was there . But I will be having fun tomorrow, I am one of four guides telling the story of Fort Croghan one of the first U S Army Forts on the Texas frontier to 180 first graders . Hope I have my car ready for next year. Perry Burnet Tx
Nice Crowd and good commentary!Have fun and be safe.
Thanks for the photos and updates Royce.
Great pictures! Looks like a wonderful tour.
Wonderful pictures! Looks like everyone is enjoying themselves.
What a hoot!!! Keep those pics and stories coming....
Great looking tour Royce. That is some seriously flat country! PK
Great photos of what appears to be a great tour. Thank you Royce.
Thank you Royce for a great tour report! I look forward to more.
One comment. PLEASE don't feed cabbage to a cow! Have you ever tasted milk from a cow that had eaten cabbage?!
Drive carefully, and do enjoy! W2
Thanks for the great tour coverage Royce. Please keep them coming. A Texas T Party is definitely on my list of T Tours to attend. I hope to get to one, one day and catch up with some of the great Texan folk I have met on other Tours. Greeting to Pat & Bill, Dave & Kathy and Cordez family!
I love the line, "Bar-b-q restaurant and gun store"
They also have a salad bar for vegetarian prospective gun owners. Also western wear, camping stuff, you name it. We plan to spend some time there today. !
Wow what a great time that must have been! So jealous of your (almost) constant nice weather. Thanks for the pics and story Royce. Our car season is beginning to wind down, right now we're "enjoying" temps in the 50's with NE winds gusting to 35 mph! And that way through the weekend with rain coming. We need the rain though.
Any report on what caused the breakdowns?
The maroon pickup on the vulture wagon belongs to the tour chairman. He thinks the band lining(s) may have come loose? The engine is locked up. He hopes it's just the tranny and nothing more serious?
Another pickup had a distributor problem. New points and condenser seem to have fixed it?
A TT had a Rocky Mountain transmission mounted on the rear end come out of gear? He fixed it with a bungee cord to keep it in gear.
The maroon 26 was overheating badly. It needs a good radiator.
Thanks for the pictures Royce and Tony. I was sorry to miss this year's Texas T Party but had to drive 729 miles round trip to Longview,TX yesterday to retrieve my '10 Maxwell and will be playing polka music tomorrow in Fredericksburg when ya'll are touring. Have fun !!