Saturday, December 31, 2011
Opened in the summer of 1916 at the corner of Phelps, Thomas and McKinney Avenues. Owner F.O. Stone had previously opened bakeries in Cincinnati and in Atlanta, but this two-story brick manufacturing plant, built for $35,000, was his biggest endeavor. The sole product of the plant was six varieties of soft cakes made with butter and wrapped in wax paper packages to sell at local grocery stores. The 60-ft wide white tile oven was considered something of a novelty, as it baked the cakes via radiation heat and not by direct flame. The plant could produce 3,000 cakes an hour, and the 8 oz. cakes originally sold for 10 cents apiece.
In 1919 the company acquired Southern Baking Company and announced that the Dallas plant would be enlarged at a cost of $150,000. It also changed its name to Campbell-Stone Baking Company. "Stone's Cakes" became "Campbell Capital Cakes" . Sometime around 1930 the company became The Continental Baking Company. Even in those days you couldn't count on your favorite brand being around for long.
Thursday, December 29, 2011
Wednesday, December 28, 2011
In 1907 Dallas won the honor of hosting the 1908 Elks Convention. It was a great gig for the town, then numbering 90,000 residents. Elks' Lodges of Texas and the Southwest raised much of the $20,000 required to build this purple and white steel and plaster arch at Akard and Commerce. It was two stories tall and topped by a life-size elk. In July 1908 delegates from all over the United States converged in Dallas. Over 250,000 people turned out for the parades that passed by this arch. The convention was considered a great success and the arch remained in place until February1911, when it was moved to the old fair grounds.
Monday, December 26, 2011
The Chicken Bar opened about October 1942 on 1600 Commerce St. across the street from Neiman Marcus. It was the latest venture of a young Tyler oilman, J. Curtis Sanford, who was a kind of "Mark Cuban" of his time. He had been a boxing promoter, and he had initiated the first New Year's Day Cotton Bowl football game in 1937. He had also brought two top tennis players to play indoors at the Fair Park Livestock Arena, one of the most spectacular indoor sporting events to take place in Dallas (obviously pre-Mavs). Sanford switched gears after he was sold some chicks in 1941 and began raising them on the grounds of his colonial-style home near White Rock Lake . He decided the best way to make money was to fry those chickens fer eatin'. Sanford would eventually open six Chicken Bars before quitting the business about 1947.