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Thursday, May 5, 2016


My brother Bruce found a reference to the 'weather eye' that sat at atop the Texas National Bank Building in downtown Houston.  I assume the building had a Main St. address, but it was located next to the First Methodist Church.  Info says the weather eye began operation in 1957.  I found two photos to refresh your memories.

The weather eye (ball at the top of the sign) provided a simple, highly visible forecast of Houston's weather, as explained in the lyrics of an ad the bank ran on local radio stations:
Red light warmer weather
Blue light cooler weather
Green light no change in view
Blinking light, rain is due.

I may be dreaming, but I think they may have run a television ad with the same jingle.  Regardless, I remember seeing it when we drove up Main St. to shop at Foleys.

I found the following map showing the empresario land grants authorized by the Mexican government when Texas was still part of Mexico.  We tend to focus on Austin's colony, but you'll see that many other empresarios colonized Texas.  Click on the image to view other maps.

I want to thank my aunt (Mayme Rachuig Hause) for sending a link to this short film from the 1920s, entitled "Oil Field Dodge." It shows a Dodge automobile plowing through rough terrain to reach an drilling site out in the boondocks.  

Of course, the purpose of the film was to show the robust nature of Dodge vehicles, but it's important to note that roads were pretty bad back in the 1920s.  Prior to 1927 when it was paved and renamed Highway 90A, the road from Houston to Rosenberg and points west could become so muddy that teams of mules were needed to get cars out of boggy areas.