Sidney Roper Weisiger Collection
Transcription from original document W8-150A-3
The Victoria Regional History Center
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INN (Edna, Texas)
Bridge Inn Site and Owners
Dance Pavilion & Bands
Victoria Gun Club
Highway 12 (now 59)
Mrs. Dorothy Billstein: The motto was "Live by the side of
the road and be a friend to man"
Site and Owners:
Mail addressed to Bridge Inn, Texas, would go to Inez Post
office & be delivered by rural carrier.
Creek had great bass fishing.
- Ap[ri]l 1928, dirt contract let. Piece
of land leased from Kolles by Lloyd and Dorothy Billstein. Bounded by Hi Way
59, Garcitas Creek and S P.R. R.[Southern Pacific Railroad]. 1st
b[uildin]g was a small café & service station with magnolia gas
in 1931, very small. Barbecue was their speciality. Lloyd was a carpenter
& worked at his trade. Dorothy ran the business.
- 573-9181 575-3237 575-7673 Lloyd leased from[blank] Kolle.
Bought land before [sale] Built 1931.
- 1st bl[built], cafe & SS[service station]
- 1st speciality barbecue
- In 1931, this was a corn field, when Billstein
leased from Mr. Louis Kolle Sr. B[ui]lt small café & service station
with magnolia equiptment [sic]. Name was recorded as Bridge Inn. New Hi Way
just put there.
- In 1933, enlarged b[uildin]g. In 1934,
- In 1933, built the dance pavillion [sic] around oak tree.
- In 1935, enlarged b[uildin]g
- About 1935, blt[built] pavilion, bands
play[ed]: Rudy & 7 Aces, Steve Gardner, Tune Wranglers.
- Victoria Gun club bt[built] about 1935.
- Garage ap[artmen]t b[ui]lt about 1937 for
- A garage ap[artmen]t in rear was built about [blank].
- Big Da[nce] Hall blt[built] 1938.
- The café was enlarged in 1940. Café
enlarged four times.
- 1940 Built-enlarged café already had café
enlarg[ed] 4 or 5 times, Oct[ober] or Nov[ember] of 1947, Mr. & Mrs. Harlow
tookover for several years.
- Vernon Harlow 573-6705 1947-53
- Sold-Tipton then sold nephew. 1 or two dances a week . [
Pruial ?] [Park?] square dance.
- 220-355: Ap[ri]l 22,1947. Mrs. Annie Kolle
to Lloyd & Dorthy Billstein 10.07 ac[res] out of Valentine Garcia abst[ract]
45. Part of 138 ac[res] tract sold to Louis Kolle Sr. by Hirschhauser 1919.
- In Oct[ober] or Nov[ember] of 1947, Mr. Char[les] Jacobsen
purchased the property from Billstein. The Billstein had already bought from
- Char[les] Jacobsen bout [bought] Aug[ust] 1947
- Mrs. Vernon W. Harlow, Chas[les] Jacobsen purchased in 1947,
and his daughter & son- in- law. Mr. & Mrs. Vernon A. Harlow operated
until 1953, when sold to A. D. "Red" Tipton, who operated until he died. About
6 mo[nths] after his death, his widow sold to her nephews.
- 226-537: 8-29-1947. Lloyd & Dorothy
Billstein to Charles Jacobsen 10.07 ac[res] same as sold to Lloyd & Dorothy
Billstein by Mrs Annie Kolle Ap[ri]l 22-1947. See Vol[ume] 22, P[age] 355.
- Aug[ust] 1947, Mr. & Mrs. Vernon Harlow
took over Bridge Inn & ran until 1953 when sold to Red
- Jacobsen had Harlow manage the place for him for several
- Red Tipton ran place for 2 or 4 years.
- Red Tipton, managed for 2 or 3 years.
- ca 1953 Cha[rle]s Jacobsen Estate to "Red"
Tipton, who operated until about 1970, when Mrs. Tipton sold
to nephews Douglas and Jimmie Tipton, who still own the property which are
dance hall & café now vacant. The living quarters are rented as
a residence. Has not operated as a café or service station since about
1965. (While A. D. "Red" Tipton, was owner the place was rented to people
from Houston who renamed it the "Candle Light Club" & operated for a while.)
- 1935, built the open air pavillion [sic] around oak tree.
- Bands [that] played: Rudy and his 7 Aces, Steve Gardner,
Tune Wranglers, [&] other big bands. Adolph Hafner played.
- Among bands were: Southern Aires, Babe Shindler, Bennie
Prause and his Band, Rudy & the 7 Aces, Jessie Stillus. Red Cornestron,
on the piano, was a familiar musician. Adolph Hafner also played.
- The big dance hall built 1938. Billstein ran hall until
1942 then leased or rented to people to have dances. Famous for private parties.
- Harlows had dances once or twice a week . "Southern Airs
& Adolph Hafner played. Hafner plays 2 times each month.
- Square Dance Club of Victoria used the hall.
- Private parties use hall.
- No dances during Lent.
- During most of war, dances discontinued by Bridge Inn. Hall
was rented to people who wanted to have dances.
- All night moon light dances. Moon in tree by Bell [Zorn
?] Battle dance between two bands Rudy & 7 Aces and Jessie Sillulis orchestra.
Billstein served bacon & egg breakfast after all night dance.
- When pavillion[sic] [was] 1st b[uilt], floor
waxed good & gave free dance. Cold spell on May 6,1937, with heavy jack
frost caused wax to get to hard. Dance had to stop.
- In 1937, closed in the dance floor, with pavillion [sic].
Every time a blue cloud appeared, a sprinkle came, the dance crowd left.
- Dances given up unto 1942. Then people rented hall &
gave their own. Big banquets give by Billstein.
Highway 12 (now 59)
- Hi Way 1928: Hi Way construction of no[number] 12, now 59
started in 1928 & completed 1932.
- 1928, Survey started Jackson [Co[unty] line to Victoria.
- 1928, 1st bridge on Garcitas on Hi Way 12, at
Bridge Inn, started Ap[ri]l 1928. Sharpest curves on Hi Way 12 in Victoria
Co[unty] at Bridge Inn.
- 1930, Paving contract let & by 1931, the hard top was
- Cut of[f] a 10 ac[re] tract bound by S P P R [Southern Pacific
Railraod], Garcitas & new Hi Way 12.
- When Hi Way was completed, fed over 375 people at big barbecue
at the road side park. This was a Hi Way Dep[artmen]t feed. Food prepared
at Bridge Inn.
- Beautiful flowers & shrubs would have won the contest
for Hi Way 128, but a beer sign was exposed.
- Had 9 people on pay roll. Among those remembered are Howard
Holzheuser, Raymond Hill & Ester Hiller. Lawrence Allen was the barbecue
man. Meat furnished by Aaron Kolle Market of Inez.
- Billstein gave big banquets at place.
- Billstein mixed the sauce & made potato salad. During
war, some of the brass from Foster Field would go to Bridge Inn for lunch.
- July 4 always big day barbecue with dance & fire works.
In election year, had big barbecue. Donkey dance with politician riding donkeys.
- At times, catered to football banquets in Victoria.
- Handled beer. Package store. Sold gas, oil & auto parts.
- Nov[ember] 11,always big day. Last day of skeet shoot. Big
- Victoria Gun Club built about 1935.
- During first days of Foster Field, used the skeet range
for target practice for cadets.
- Gun Club [?] stands etc. Bridge Inn furnish shells &
- Bridge Inn was a gathering place for bird hunters. Lloyd
had good dogs & loved to hunt.
- Leo Granbury, Dr. Ward in club.
- From Dr Ward:
- Victoria Gun Club 1st at [Vic?] Urban. Next
Bridge Inn, in early 1930's, last on Conti Lane. Had 6 traps, sold traps
to Navy, but not the houses. Dr. O. S. McMullen, Dr. N. W. Ward, Ralph Calhoun,
Tom Walter Melscott, Leo Granbury, Paul Bernhard, Clarice Goldman, Rev.
Roberts shot with men from Edna. Young Lloyd accidently set one b[uildin]g
- Victoria Gun Club used the old set up for Skeet shooting
while Harlows had place.
- 1942, man appeared early one morn with papers ordering the
Billstein to turn the skeet equiptment [sic] over to the Navy & it was
moved to C C[ Corpus Christi] Naval Base.
- During war, Foster Field used to train cadets. Sale part
of 1942 or [?] 1943. One morn, 9 man from C[orpus] C[hristi] Navel Base with[
peg?] took equipment-to [corp?]
Vignette 1928 [due June 1930?][ Pane [?] let 1-20-1972] Bridge
Inn Notes From Lloyd Billstein, [Jeff [?] Hi Way Hi Way 12?][Bridge b[ui]lt
on Garcitas started Ap[ri]l 1928.?][ Now no 59.] Sharpest curve on Hi Way this
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