We were standing at the far end of an asphalt parking lot on the LBJ Ranch when Johnson City, Texas tied a record for the hottest day since 1890. In the distance, we could see the JetStar aircraft Lyndon Baines Johnson used during his tenure […]
Early one Thursday evening, we sat on a deck high above the Colorado River drinking almond-flavored concoctions spiked with “shine”. It was still quite hot, but runners followed a path below that paralleled the water. A canoe or two passed by. Our drinks came from […]
How do you choose a place to stay in the “Bed and Breakfast Capital of Texas”? It’s easy. You read a little history and you choose your favorite ghost.
We ruled out the historic Jefferson Hotel, even though it looks nice and has a great location. Some say there is a man in a long, black coat who roams the old place. People who believe such things, suggest he could be a riverboat gambler who met a tragic end. They claim that if the man-in-black shows up beside your bed, he won’t leave. This is not something we’d like to deal with in the middle of the night. We need our sleep.
The other downtown hotel – The Excelsior House – is lovely. It has been in continuous operation for 161 years. It has pretty doors and windows and a shady area out front where you can people watch.
Rumor has it, there is a headless ghost that roams the place. We read that when Steven Spielberg stayed at the Excelsior, he packed his bags in the middle of the night and left. This is the man who wrote Poltergeist and Poltergeist II and III. He directed Jaws and Twilight Zone and Cape Fear. You have to know he’s brave. He is certainly braver than we are. No one ever calls Steven Spielberg a sissy.
We decided rather than staying overnight, we would have the weekend brunch in the hotel’s elegant dining room.
Unfortunately, we just ran out of time. (We did not chicken out!)
The Scarlett O’Hardy Bed and Breakfast, (Yes, O’Hardy not O’Hara), sounded like a nice, peaceful place to spend the night, but we learned the owner was out of the hotel business. She’s decided to focus on her Gone With The Wind museum.
We took the tour.
It’s an amazing collection of Gone With Wind memorabilia. The owner obtained patterns for several of the well-known costumes and had them duplicated by an expert tailor in San Antonio. And she was a very good friend of the late, Cammie King, the actress who played Bonnie Blue Butler. Ms. King made her last public appearance at the Scarlett O’Hardy Museum.
In Jefferson, there is a beautiful home with a bed and breakfast sign on almost every block. The architecture in this town is pretty hard to believe.
The Angell Manor looked very nice.
But the very best ghost story in town belonged to the White Oak Manor. Their sweet ghost just rustles a quilt or two. No headless stuff. No long black coats.
Nothing is the least bit scary at the White Oak Manor Bed and Breakfast!
They deserve their wonderful online reviews. We loved sitting on their wide front porch. We loved visiting with the owners.
And breakfast was amazing!
That’s a Dutch Baby with an apple sauce (not applesauce!) and fresh blackberries along with eggs and sausage.
If we were haunting Jefferson, we would like to haunt the Jefferson General Store, but we hear that job is taken. Employees claim to see the ghosts of children there.
We can understand why they hang around.
The old store has a soda fountain and tons of candy and toys.
So I guess we will have to haunt the Austin Street Bistro instead. We wouldn’t mind that at all. They have an excellent wine list.
We had the same appetizer two nights in a row.
You might want to try this at home.
This is their version of bruschetta. It’s cherry tomatoes and basil in balsamic served with a jalapeno, goat cheese spread. Those are strips of toasty focaccia bread. It was delicious.
Our only problem with Jefferson was that we didn’t stay long enough. We left so much undone. You know what that means. We have to go back.
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A few pretty photos on the Internet and a list of local attractions didn’t prepare us for the reality of Jefferson, Texas. We were greeted by narrow streets lined with old-growth magnolia trees. There were elegant homes, both large and small, with wide front porches […]