Thursday, August 10, 2017

Mixerr Album Reviews #1,324

This is Michael Mixerr. Today I will do an album review on S. H. Dudley - The Village Choir.

This single album was made in 1899. Which was released on Victor which was owned by partner-rival record company Columbia Records. Anyway for those who do not know, Sherman Houston Dudley was a well known African-American vaudeville performer and a theatre entrepreneur. He had gained his notability in the late 19th and early 20th century as a composer and performer of ragtime songs, Dudley was of the first African-Americans to combine business with theater. Which had made him notable.

I rate this album, The Village Choir, 5/5*****.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Carmelita's business in Lago Vista, Texas reported to be up for sale.

Carmelita Hanley started the Carmelita's business as a restaurant in the city of Lago Vista, Texas in 1995. What started as a restaurant became apartments. Carmelita's later became a bar. The bar was located on 5905 Lohman Ford Road on the same property. Carmelita's was located on one of Lago Vista’s busiest streets, Lohman Ford Road. No, Carmelita's was never a hotel.

The buildings themselves were built in 1995. The buildings themselves look much older than any buildings that would have been built in 1995. The buildings resembles buildings that were constructed and built pre-1965 based on the architectural appearance. The 2 story house at the front entrance next to Lohman Ford Road looks very similar to a pre-1965 house. In fact, the house located up front on Lohman Ford Road looks very similar to a vernacular 19th century house rather than a house that was built or constructed in 1995. 

Building units far away from Lohman Ford Road resemble units for apartments or a hotel. Those building units far away from Lohman Ford Road resemble units for an apartment complex. Carmelita's had a small town hotel feel hence the small building styled architecture.

Over the years, Carmelita Hanley leased the property and buildings to several businesses and owners such as Lago Tacos, 5905 Lohmans Ford Road LLC, Lago Music Hall, Butch Y West, Alternative Hair Solutions, Taha Custom Homes Inc., and lukepages. loopnet.com had reported this property originally sold for the price of $380,000 dollars in 2006. According to loopnet.com apparently the owner has decided to liquidate.

In 2011, Carmelita's was shut down by City of Lago Vista building code enforcement. Reasons why Carmelita's was shut down was due to poor construction and code violations. Carmelita's was cited with numerous code violations by City of Lago Vista for poor construction and several structural errors in such buildings. Some buildings were not structurally safe although floorplans were fine.

Over the years, the Carmelita's buildings sat abandoned. Rooms in several building remain vacant. There are no signs of squatters or homeless life inside these buildings. Rats have taken hostage of one building north of the 2 story house. All rooms and buildings are empty. All are vacant.

In 2016, Sandy Le and Gary Hudson sold the buildings and property to a business called Taha Custom Homes Inc. which is a local business. Sandy Le abandoned everything in 2016.

As of August 2017, Carmelita's buildings and property are up for sale after being abandoned for several years to any buyers who are business owners interested in commercial property to sale or lease out. The property is zoned as commercial property by City of Lago Vista. Property type is retail. Property size is 2 acres of land. Lot size and building size are as per Travis County Appraisal District. Contact landlord leasing representatives Kennedy Wilson, Sandy Le, Gary Hudson, and Butch West at 512-402-7581 extension 394 for more information. Owner Carmelita Hanley can be contacted at 512-267-0611.

The location for Carmelita's was 5905 Lohman Ford Road, Lago Vista, Texas, US 78645.

History about Oak Grove Church in Austin, Texas nearly long forgotten.

Origins for Oak Grove Church date back to 1861 when the building was know as Oak Grove School. Oak Grove Church was the former Oak Grove School that was located on the end of Spicewood Springs Road in Austin, Texas which served as aa rural schoolhouse that had served Travis County and rural Austin from 1861 to 1970. Oak Grove School taught grades 1 through 8 as Oak Grove School was a K-8 school.

In 1970, the for Oak Grove School was converted from a 110 year old schoolhouse into a neo-classical modern church which would become the Oak Grove Church we know today. No known modifications were made to the church.

Over the years, the Oak Grove School was set on fire several times by vandals. The Oak Grove School finally burned to the ground on the date of August 31, 1992 after being set on fire several times. Report of arson to the Oak Grove Church had appeared in an August 31, 1992 edition of the Austin American-Statesman newspaper in an article titled “Congregation mourns loss of old church”. Today only a shed, cement foundations, and a basketball court remain. The shed is currently being used for storage.

Now Oak Grove Cemetery was first plotted in 1885. Earliest burial found at this cemetery dates back to the year 1887. Today the cemetery is maintained by the donations of friends and family. Oak Grove Cemetery is private property and off limits to the public.

Oak Grove Church was/is located at 7901 Spicewood Springs Road, Austin, Texas, US 78759. Both the Oak Grove Church and Oak Grove Cemetery are located at this address. Oak Grove Cemetery is now property of Oak Grove Church. Today both Oak Grove Church and Oak Grove Cemetery are private property and are currently off limits to the public.

History about the Elroy School in Del Valle, Texas nearly long forgotten.

Elroy School was built in the community settlement of Elroy located in Del Valle, Texas in summer of 1894. Lumber to construct the Elroy School was donated by citizens in the community. Many citizens in the community helped build this school. Elroy School was a K-12 school which primarily operated as a K-9 school although older students attended. Mainly Elroy School operated as a K-9 school under the school districts of Elroy School District and Colorado Common School District. Older students often went into town to continue their education.

Mr. Daniel Ross was the first trustee for the Elroy School then. Mr. Daniel Ross then hired Mrs. A Pettis to teach at the Elroy School in 1894. Mrs. A Pettis was the first teacher to teach at Elroy School. Mr. Daniel Ross was in charge of Elroy School at the time.

Semesters were run in a six month time period. It was an agreement with Travis County Common School District superintendents that the rural school districts semesters were to run on a minimum of six months yearly per school term. Elroy School was one of the many Travis County rural schools than operated in such fashion.

Elroy School was a K-12 school which primarily operated as a K-9 school although older students attended. Sometimes students who wanted to continue their high school education had to transfer into school districts such as Creedmoor Common School District, Garfield School District, Del Valle Independent School District, or go the largest school district in town called Austin Independent School District. Sometimes students had to transfer to other school districts to continue their high school education depending on the availability of such said school districts stated above.


Two teachers were employed to the Elroy School in 1901. These two teachers had to teach in the same room. After 1903, the school term was extended to 7 months instead of the average 6 months most school districts in Texas had at that time. Elroy School was described as “one of the prettiest schoolhouses in the county” in the 1905 Travis County School Annual. A second room was added the summer of 1906. The third room was added in 1909. A third teacher was added that same year. The 1911 school term was lengthened to 8 months. In 1916, the wooden Elroy School was demolished and replaced as red brick schoolhouse which still stands today. That was when Elroy School was a three room schoolhouse.


The Elroy School on 9019 Elroy Road was the “main school”. For a while, the Elroy School on 9019 Elroy Road served primarily as an elementary school. Swing sets out in the front indicated that Elroy School was an elementary school. When Elroy School was an elementary school, grades 1 through 9 were taught and older students had to go into town to continue their education.
That Elroy School served primarily as an elementary school called Elroy Elementary School from where grades 1 through 9 were taught. Later the Elroy School only taught grades 1 through 8 even though older students attend this school when there was no open space available in other schools.


The Elroy School District had its own segregated schools which were separated by race. Such as the Elroy Negro School, Elroy White School, and Elroy Mexican School for instance. Segregation law of the land in Texas State. Small community settlement Elroy, Texas was no exception to this case.

The Elroy White School was the Elroy School located on 9019 Elroy Road which still stands today. The Elroy White School was the “main school”. This is the school that served as the Elroy Community Center from years 1965 to 1988. Elroy White School had a ratio of 2 teachers to 107 white students with the ratio being 2:107 in the year of 1907.

Elroy Negro School served as a school for black/African-American students who lived in the Elroy community located on 14107 FM 812. Elroy Negro School had a ratio of 2 teachers to 61 black students with the ratio being 2:61 in the year of 1907. Elroy Negro School taught elementary grades primarily. Elroy Negro School was converted into Elroy Elementary School in 1950. From 1950 to 1963, Elroy Elementary School was taught here. In 1963 after consolidating with Del Valle ISD, the Elroy Negro School was demolished. No traces of Elroy Negro School exist today.

These schools were eventually consolidated into Colorado Common School District in 1961 which eventually was restructured into Del Valle Independent School District (Del Valle ISD) in 1963. The schools separated by race were demolished, shut down by Del Valle ISD, auctioned off, or sold to private homeowners.

In 1961 Elroy School and Elroy School District were consolidated into Colorado Common School District in 1961 and consolidated & restructured into Del Valle Independent School District (Del Valle ISD) in 1963.


1963 is when Elroy School was closed. In 1965, the Elroy School became the Elroy Community Center. From 1965 to 1988 the Elroy School operated as a community center. In 1980, the school building received a series of renovations from Del Valle Independent School District bond elections. For a short time in the 1980s, Y Knot Ranch owned and leased the building to various businesses and organizations. Both Y Knot Ranch and Del Valle ISD own the property together through a joint venture.

In late 1988, Travis County Fire Rescue purchased the Elroy School from Del Valle Independent School District and Y Knot Ranch. In 1989, the former Elroy School building became a fire station for Travis County. Fire station Travis County Fire Rescue ESD #11 currently serves a majority of southeastern Travis County. In recent years buildings were added onto Elroy School. 2 buildings were added next to the former Elroy School building.

In an August 24, 1989 edition of the Austin American-Statesman newspaper explains the red brick schoolhouse has been converted to a fire station. (The red brick schoolhouse is Elroy School.)

On the date of September 21st, 2016, an upgrade to existing electric services was made and added on.
Only the existing fire house received an eud. A couple of more renovations were added on approval from Travis County commissioners. On this date, the building was declared up to code by Travis County commissioners.


Today Travis County Fire Rescue owns the former Elroy School building and property operating under the name of Travis County Fire Rescue ESD #11. The school is located at 9019 Elroy Road, Del Valle, Texas, US 78617. The alternate addresses are 9019 Farm to Market Road 812, Del Valle, Texas, US 78617 and 9019 FM 812 Del Valle, Texas, US 78617.

History of Schiller School in Elgin, Texas long forgotten.

In October 1885, a man named Joseph Schiller purchased 95.5 acres in Travis County. Joseph Schiller later donated this land for the Schiller School and the Schiller Cemetery. The school was named after Joseph Schiller. The Schiller School was first organized in 1889. The Schiller School was built as a one room schoolhouse during the same year. The Schiller School was located on Old Kimbro Road aka Old Highway 20 (State Highway 20) which is now known as FM 1100 near the Travis County-Bastrop County border.

Grades 1 through 9 were taught at Schiller School. Grade 10 was added on eventually later. Although Schiller School was primarily a K-9 school, Grades 10 through 12 also attended this school. Students ages had ranged from 6 to 17 years of age. Sometimes students who were 18 attended this school.

At first the school was referred to as the Bohemian School because most of the students were children of area Bohemian farmers. Many children of farmers in the Elgin area and Manor area who attended this school had either German ancestry, Bohemian ancestry, came from a German background of course, or were of Bohemian ancestry and came from a Bohemian background. Student population was mainly compromised of German and Bohemian origins. Student population was mainly caucasian/white. Although there were black/African-American students who attended Schiller School as some historians report in history reports.

Schiller School had operated its own school district from 1889 to 1947 before being consolidated through a series of school district consolidations. School district for Schiller School was Schiller School District better known as School District No. 31 or District No. 31. Manor ISD and Elgin ISD helped fund this school district when there was a lack of funds.

The room was enlarged to a size of 60 x 30 feet in 1894. In 1916, a new one building was acquired by the school district. Henry Neidig purchased the 1889 school building for a price of $100. A second room was added in 1926. The second room was built by Fred Rose.

In 1947, the Schiller School consolidated into the Manda Common School District. The Manda School District was dissolved in 1960 and was divided among Manor ISD, Pflugerville ISD, and Elgin ISD. Most students were bussed to Manor ISD and Elgin ISD though. Rather than Pflugerville ISD. Although a majority of students were bussed to Elgin ISD being that the Schiller School was located closer to Elgin than Manor.

Only the Schiller Cemetery remains today in tact with 15 burials. Graves are still in tact with markers. A chain link fence surrounds the Schiller Cemetery. The Schiller Cemetery is surrounded by a barrage of trees. The Schiller School had been demolished long ago.

The Schiller School and the Schiller Cemetery was located next to 17500 FM 1100, Elgin, Texas, US 78621.

*Schiller School District was better known as District No. 31.
*Schiller School mostly consolidated into Elgin ISD.
*Manda School District also went under the title of Manda Common School District.
*Old Highway 20 was US 290.

Former New Sweden School in Manor, Texas long forgotten.

New Sweden School was built as a one room schoolhouse in the summer of 1916. Classes started in the fall later that same year. Construction for the New Sweden School lasted from summer to fall.

New Sweden School had its own school district called New Sweden School District (School District No. 22) before being consolidated into Manda School District. New Sweden School and several other schools along with school districts were consolidated to form the Manda Common School District in 1947. The Manda School District was dissolved in 1960 and was divided among Manor ISD, Pflugerville ISD, and Elgin ISD. Most students were bussed to Manor ISD though.

From 1948 to 1985, New Sweden School had served as a church. In 1985, the school building was all but abandoned. Over the years, the former school building fell into a horrendous state of rural decay. Overtime the building burned down from natural wildfire. Top roof perished from the flames. Top roof for this former school is no longer extant. Today the school is surrounded by shrubs, bushes, wild brush, and a slew of trees in the country breeze.

The former New Sweden School was located 7 miles north of Manor, Texas. The address for the New Sweden School was 12178 New Sweden Church Road, Manor, Texas, US 78653.

*New Sweden School District was School District No. 22 better known as District #22.
*New Sweden School and New Sweden School District eventually consolidated into Manor ISD.
*New Sweden School and New Sweden School District was abolished in 1947 even thought the building was still in operation.
*Manda School District also went under the title of Manda Common School District.

History about Oak Grove School in Austin, Texas long forgotten.

Oak Grove School was a rural schoolhouse that served Travis County and Austin from 1861 to 1970. The former Oak Grove School was located on the end of Spicewood Springs Road in Austin, Texas. From 1861 to 1970, Oak Grove School had operated its own school district called Oak Grove School District simply known as School District #5 or District No. 5. Oak Grove School taught grades 1 through 8. The former Oak Grove School was a K-8 school.

After 1900, students who graduated 8th Grade wanted to continue their high school education were transferred to the Nichols School in the Nichols School District (School District #62/District No. 62). Some had simply transferred to Austin ISD high schools such as Austin High School, Allan High School, McCallum High School, or Lanier Junior-Senior High School (now Lanier High School).

Due to lack of enrollment and dwindling tax revenue, Oak Grove School District was consolidated into Austin Independent School District (Austin ISD) in 1970. In 1970, the schoolhouse for Oak Grove School was converted into a church which would become the Oak Grove Church we know today. No known modifications were made to the church.

Over the years, the Oak Grove School was set on fire several times by vandals. The Oak Grove School finally burned to the ground on the date of August 31, 1992 after being set on fire several times. Today only a shed, cement foundations, and a basketball court remain.

The shed is currently being used for storage. Today the Oak Grove School property has been repurposed into a private church called Oak Grove Church. Oak Grove Cemetery is now property of Oak Grove Church. Both Oak Grove Church and Oak Grove Cemetery are private property and are currently off limits to the public.

As for the Oak Grove Cemetery, the Oak Grove Cemetery was first plotted in 1885. Earliest burial found at this cemetery dates back to the year 1887. Today the cemetery is maintained by the donations of friends and family. Oak Grove Cemetery is private property and off limits to the public.

Oak Grove School was located at 7901 Spicewood Springs Road, Austin, Texas, US 78759. Both the Oak Grove Church and Oak Grove Cemetery are located at this address.


*Oak Grove School District was also known as School District No. 5.
*Report of arson to the Oak Grove Church had appeared in an August 31, 1992 edition of the Austin American-Statesman newspaper in an article titled “Congregation mourns loss of old church”.
*Nichols School District was known as District #62/District No. 62. Nichols School operated in this school district from 1900 to 1951.
*Lanier Junior-Senior High School is now Lanier High School.

History of Nichols School in Leander, Texas long forgotten.

1 acre of land was donated by Samuel Houston Nichols for a school to be built on in the year of 1900. The school was named after Samuel Houston Nichols. Samuel Houston Nichols donated building materials for Nichols School to be built. The Nichols School building was built from logs in a lumber yard in 1900. Men from the Leander community helped construct the school building. The lumber used to build the Nichols School was cedar from cedar trees. Cedar was the choice for lumber since cedar grew nearby in the area. Construction for Nichols School was completed on Christmas Day during the date of December 25, 1900.

Samuel Houston Nichols and Dick Preece were the first trustees for the Nichols School. Although it was Samuel Houston Nichols that served as the school’s main trustee. Dick Preece served as school trustee in the 1930s. Ms. Florence Harvey was the first teacher to have taught at Nichols School.

Prior to 1900, students attend Oak Grove School located in the Oak Grove School District (District #5). Nichols School operated as a school district called Nichols School District better known as District #62 from 1900 to 1951. The school has been located at various locations throughout the years. Nichols School had often relocated at various times throughout the years.


In January 1929, the school building had burned from fire. The fire damaged the school building so badly to where the building itself was determined by fire marshals to be structurally unsafe. Fire marshals determined Nichols School was deemed unfit for human life. Luckily the furniture was miraculously saved from the fire. The outside walls structures caved in from the fire of course.

Nichols School was rebuilt in September 1931 in a different location closer to the community. This time Tom Gillman donated land for the Nichols School to be rebuilt on. Tom Gillman donated building materials for Nichols School to be built.

The new Nichols School building was destroyed by fire again near the close of the 1932-1933 school semester. The new Nichols School was burned by fire in late 1932. The fire damaged the school building so badly to where the building itself was determined by fire marshals to be structurally unsafe and uninhabitable. County fire marshals deemed the school building to be a safety hazard. Teachers could not teach nor could education or classwork resume as the school building was deemed unfit for human life. None of the furniture was saved from the fire.

Nichols School District was without a school until the 1934-1935 school semester. School was held at the “Old Preece Place” in a small log cabin from 1923 until 1934-1935 school semester. Old fashioned board benches and wooden boxes were used as seats. There were no funds to buy desks at that time. During the 1936-1937 school semester, A. F.. Maechel consented with the school district to use his house as a temporary school building until funds could be received to build a new school building for Nichols School. The school district deemed the house unsuitable to fulfill their needs, but A. F.. Maechel’s house was the only building available at the time.

A quote from the 1936 yearbook of Travis County Rural Schools - The Defender yearbook states the following: “Several unsuccessful efforts have been made to rebuild the Nichols School on the original site, but so far funds are insufficient.”


A new bus was purchased to accommodate the Nichols School in Leander, Jonestown, and rural Travis County in the year of 1950. A new bus came under contract with the Leander Independent School District school board later that coming year. Demand for a new school bus was very high during that time.

In the same year, Leander ISD Superintendent O. J. Faught required all 1st graders to have their health immunization shots and also to have their birth certificates before entering school. Immunization shots had become a new requirement for students before entering school. This was due to health concerns from the school board.


1951 is the year when Nichols School was consolidated into Leander Independent School District. The former students attended classes in the Leander schools during that time. 1951 was the same year Nichols School closed following school consolidation into Leander ISD. Nichols School was closed down by Leander ISD. In 1952, the Nichols School building was later demolished. The school had been located at various locations throughout the years before being consolidated into Leander Independent School District.


*Nichols School District was known as District #62/District No. 62.
*Oak Grove School District was known as District #5/District No. 5.

History behind the small Cox Springs School in Lago Vista, Texas.

Cox Springs School was built in 1908 as a one-room building for Lago Vista Common School District No. 2 better known as Lago Vista Common School District. Cox Springs School was known as Cox Springs School House when the school district first opened this school. Grades 1 through 11 attended this school with Grade 12 eventually being included. Originally the Cox Springs School was located closely near the intersection of Lohman Ford Road & Sylvester Ford Road in Lago Vista, Texas from 1908 to 1940.
Cox Springs School had its own school district called Cox Springs School District (District #2) from 1908 to 1950 before being consolidated into Lago Vista Independent School District.

In 1940, the Cox Springs School building was moved from the intersection of Lohman Ford Road & Sylvester Ford Road in Lago Vista, Texas to Old Burnet Road in Jonestown, Texas. Grade 12 was added in 1949 due to Gilmer-Aiken Law mandated by the State of Texas. More funds went towards the school district that following year. 1950 is when Cox Springs School District was abolished and consolidated into Lago Vista Independent School District (Lago Vista ISD).

In 1960 the last group of students from grades 1st through 12th were moved to Lago Vista School which was known then to Lago Vista citizens and locals as the “the little red schoolhouse” on 7610 Lohman Ford Road. Lago Vista School was a K-12 school then.

Currently as of August 2017, the North Shore Heritage & Cultural Society and former students are working with the City of Lago Vista, City of Jonestown, and Travis County Historical Commission to move the school building onto a permanent location. North Shore Heritage & Cultural Society and former students are working to restore the former school building. North Shore Heritage & Cultural Society wants to save this building in an attempt of historic preservation so students of today can see how students who lived in Lago Vista and Jonestown during the early 20th century received their education. Both commissions plan to keep the old school in tact.


Both the City of Lago Vista and City of Jonestown consider Cox Springs School to be a historical building despite no Texas Historic Landmark marker. Although there is no Texas Historic Landmark marker, a brown metal sign about the school’s history is located behind the school building facing Old Burnet Road. Cox Springs School is one of the oldest buildings in Lago Vista next to the Lago Vista School which is commonly known as “the little red schoolhouse” to local citizens and historians.


Originally the Cox Springs School was located closely near the intersection of Lohman Ford Road & Sylvester Ford Road in Lago Vista, Texas from 1908 to 1940 before relocating to Old Burnet Road in Jonestown in a modern day neighborhood called The Bluffs. Although the Cox Springs School is considered to be in Lago Vista, Texas, the actual location the school building is currently located at is 18842 Old Burnet Road, Jonestown, Texas, US 78645. The alternate address is 18842 Old Burnet Road, Leander, Texas, US 78645.


*Lago Vista Common School District is now know as Lago Vista Independent School District.
*Local historians, realtors, politicians, local citizens, and history buffs often refer to Cox Springs School as a one-room school building.
*Cox Springs School District was known as School District No. 2/District No. 2.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Mopac toll road expected to be completed by 2020. (Revisited)

The Mopac toll road is expected be completed by the year 2020. By 2020, construction will have been completed and the toll road will be totally functional by then. Going directions northbound and southbound, Mopac toll road will merge in those regular lanes on Mopac Highway (Loop 1) north of the Colorado River. However due to budget cuts enacted by the Texas State Legislature, construction for the Mopac toll road has been delayed slightly. Thus moving Mopac toll road completion date to 2020.

Construction on Mopac Highway alongside Mopac toll road has been rather moving at a sluggish pace. Progress remains slow as usual. Rain weather from previous months in 2017 have delayed construction for the Mopac toll road as well other factors. May rain weather delayed construction the most. Construction for the Mopac toll road begins at nighttime. News reports that construction on Texas highways and roads move at a rather slow sluggish pace. That is nothing new. The Mopac toll road is expected be completed by the year 2020.