Former Knights of Pythias Lodge - Glen Rose, TX
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member QuarrellaDeVil
N 32° 14.078 W 097° 45.324
14S E 617263 N 3567122
Quick Description: Constructed in 1896 as a saloon and home for the local Knights of Pythias, this building eventually became home to the First National Bank. Located at 100 NE Barnard St, it is now home to the Glen Rose Convention & Visitors Bureau.
Location: Texas, United States
Date Posted: 2/6/2020 9:40:22 PM
Waymark Code: WM1224M
Published By: Groundspeak Regular Member Hobo Larry
Views: 2

Long Description:
This building is a contributing building to the Glen Rose Downtown Historic District on the National Register of Historic Places. Their Registration Form provides a fairly lengthy description:

The A.P. Humphrey Saloon is a Two-part Commercial Block with three bays constructed of ashlar local limestone. It measures 25 feet wide by 79 feet long. In both size and design, it is one of the most impressive buildings fronting onto the Glen Rose courthouse square. The front has a single doorway with sidelights and two windows on the ground level and three windows with semicircular arched tops on the upper floor. The pediment bears the 1896 construction date and the symbol of the Knights of Pythias lodge (the letters, KP, inside a triangle) cut into the stone. The current aluminum windows were installed in 1963 as part of a renovation in which the exterior stonework was sand blasted. At that time a night depository was added to one of the front windows. Originally the building front had an iron-rod-suspended awning that was stabilized with vertical iron pipe supports, while currently the front has fabric canopies over the closed semicircular transoms above the ground-floor windows. The southwest side of the building, facing East Elm Street, has four fixed glass windows, the openings for which were made in 1939, and a single doorway on the ground floor and six sash windows with semicircular arched tops on the upper floor. As part of the 1963 renovation, a single-story white rusticated brick addition with one small fixed steel window on the southeast side and a shed-type roof was placed on the rear (southeast end) of the building in order to house additional vault space and modern toilet facilities. Mechanical units sit atop this added area. The upper-floor stone rear wall above the addition, which has been stuccoed, shows that three second story back sash windows have been filled and covered. The roof slopes from front to rear for drainage to a single gutter across the back that has one downspout.

By 1893 a saloon in a wooden building on land owned by the Live Oak Distilling Company of Hamilton County, Ohio, operated in lot 9 of block 6, 100 Northeast Barnard Street. This is the busy corner with East Elm Street, the road south across the Paluxy River toward Walnut Springs, on the southeast side of the courthouse square. In January 1896 A.P. Humphrey purchased the site, temporarily moved the wooden saloon into the street to keep the business operating, and began erecting what he envisioned as the highest-class saloon that Glen Rose had yet seen. He believed earnestly that local residents would keep their well-established taste for alcoholic beverages. The new two-story rusticated limestone saloon opened later in the year, with a barroom on the ground floor and a meeting hall for the Knights of Pythias fraternal order accessed by way of its own staircase on the upper story. Little could Humphrey predict that the reform movement for the prohibition of alcoholic beverages, which had already swept through other towns, counties, and states across the country would soon arrive in the seat of Somervell County. That occurred when local citizens in the Glen Rose Independent School District, which included the county seat town, petitioned for and were granted an election to take place on 2 December 1899. In a narrow vote of fifty-six to fifty-one, the voters (all of them white and male) chose to make the sale of intoxicating liquors illegal effective on 20 January 1900. A.P. Humphrey, as well as fellow retail liquor dealer E.T. Martin just down the block at 110 Northeast Barnard Street, were forced to cease their dealings. On 18 October 1902 Humphrey sold his former saloon property to the First National Bank of Glen Rose, which adapted the interior of the former drinking emporium to become a financial institution. Officers of the Knights of Pythias felt uneasy when A.P. Humphrey sold the building and lot including their second-floor meeting place. They approached J.R. Milam, then president of the First National Bank, for reassurances. In 1903 the bank consequently sold to the lodge the upper floor of the building, which it held until selling the second story back to the bank in 1924. Ownership of the First National Bank changed with generations of Glen Rose businessmen, but it operated inside the historic stone building until 1977. The institution incidentally was the scene of two successful armed robberies in 1917 and 1971. The structure was extensively renovated in 1963 and was granted a Texas Historical Building Medallion in 1964. When the financial institution moved to a new and more spacious facility on the U.S. Highway 67 bypass, the bank in 1977 transferred the historic building to Somervell County for use as a library. The Glen Rose Public Library functioned in the structure from 1978 to 1995, when it, too, moved to larger quarters. At this time local citizens petitioned the county commissioners for the creation of the Somervell County Heritage Center as a library for genealogical and archival research to operate in the building. Since that time the former saloon and bank has served that significant public service role.

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