November 6, 2010: Fall Festival at the Dallas Arboretum
October 13-21, 2010: A Trip to New Mexico and Arizona
Return to Index for 2010

Page Index

    Getting to Jefferson
    The McKay House B&B
    Friday Evening Walk
    Wednesday's 'Tour of Homes'
    Walking Around Jefferson
    Big Cypress Bayou Boat Tour
    'House of the Seasons' Tour
    We Return Home

October 26-28, 2010
A Trip to Jefferson, Texas


For some time, we'd been planning to take a weekend trip somewhere close with Steve and Mario. We'd been to Olkahoma City last year, and this year we planned on the small town of Jefferson, Texas.


Getting to Jefferson & The McKay House B&B

Jefferson is an old, quaint town in East Texas, and we thought that instead of some nondescript motel, we would try a local Bed and Breakfast. In September, we'd done some searching on the Internet, found the Ally-McKay House, and called them. We were able to get a very good rate, and made reservations for Friday the 26th and Saturday the 27th of October.


Getting to the McKay House

For this trip, Steve is taking his car, so I get a chance to be a passenger for a change.

We headed out of Dallas using the same route we usually use to go to Florida, except that this time we were leaving from Steve and Mario's House. So we went out of town to I-635 on Northwest Highway, took the expressway south to the exit for US 80, headed west and merged onto I-20 towards Shreveport.

Just after Longview, we took the exit for Hallsville, which put us back on US 80 which we took towards Marshall (another place we might visit sometime). Then it was the bypass around Marshall and US 59 north to Jefferson.

We had a bit of trouble getting to the McKay house, mostly because we relied on Google Maps. We'd written down directions weeks earlier when we made our reservations, and they seemed pretty simple. As we were coming north on Highway 59, we looked for Delta Street so we could turn right to the McKay house. But we looked and looked and finally found ourselves on the north side of town. Nowhere could we find Delta Street. As you can see from the map at right, it should intersect the highway.

We finally had to call the B&B, and that's when we found out that some years before, the last block of Delta Street between Owens and Highway 59 had been closed and the land given over to a commercial building. So we had to kind of go in the back way, as you can see from the route marked on the map.

But we did eventually find our way, and arrived about two-thirty at the McKay House on Delta Street in Jefferson. We parked on the street and went to find our hosts and get settled in.


The McKay House B&B

We were at the McKay House for all or part of three different days, and on each day we took pictures and made movies of one part of the house or another. For the purposes of this album, I'd like to bring all the pictures and movies that we took of the house and its interior together in this section. We'll have a look at the downstairs rooms and public areas and the two rooms we occupied upstairs.


The McKay House: Downstairs and Public Areas

The official name of the McKay house (as recorded on the National Register of Historic Places) is "The Alley-McKay House." Daniel Nelson Alley (1810-1868) built the home about 1851. A founder of Jefferson, Alley was a prominent early landowner in Marion county. Several families owned the house before 1884, when Hector McKay (1835-1893) bought the property. A veteran of the Civil War, McKay was one of the area's leading attorneys. His son, Arch McKay (1875-1954) retained ownership of the home until his death. Designed in the Greek Revival style, it features a 4-room, central hall plan. This means that there is a central hall with two rooms on either side of the hall, behind each other front to back.

Entering the McKay House

I made two movies to introduce you to the first floor and public areas of the McKay house. In this first movie, we'll walk up the front steps and go through the front door into the central hall.

Front Hall and Dining Room

In this movie, I'll walk you down the front hall, past the four front bedrooms, and into the public space, which is a large, multi-purpose room that contains a small library, refreshments and the dining table.

The central hall is lined with antiques, one of which holds the house's lending library. Back in the great room (seen here from the stairway to the second floor) is the dining table, sitting area and refreshment center. Fred asked our hostess to take a picture of the four of us in this room.

At the far end of the dining table there is a door out to the garden. The cat and dog living at the McKay house used the door frequently, and it seemed that someone was continually letting one of them in or out. Outside, there is a pleasant patio and garden. You can also see that there is another cottage at the back of the garden; it is yet another room for the bed and breakfast, bringing their total to seven.


Our Upstairs Rooms at the McKay House

One of the nice things about this bed and breakfast, at least for the four of us, was that the home had two upstairs bedrooms that shared a private balcony, and these were the only two upstairs rooms. This meant that for a couple of parties traveling together, as the four of us were, you could be entirely separate from the rest of the house and the rest of the guests. So let's take a look at these two upstairs rooms. Of course, the first thing you have to do is go up the stairs that were located just inside the door between the front hallway and the communal dining room.

A Tour of the Upstairs Suites

To introduce you to the McKay House upstairs rooms, come up the stairs with me, have a look at the bedroom Steve and Mario had, walk out on the shared balcony, and then have a look around the room that Fred and I shared.

Now that you've got the layout of the upstairs, I'll include some still photos. As far as Steve and Mario's room was concerned, their bathroom was unique in that there were two claw-foot tubs (something I've never seen before in a bathroom). The main part of their room was more traditional and typical of a B&B. Lots of antiques, a big comfortable bed, sitting area and so on. It was a very nice room- certainly lots nicer than your typical hotel.

As you saw in the tour movie above, our own room was about the same size but laid out differently. There was a large bed, of course, but also a day bed underneath the window that looked out to the balcony and garden below. At the foot of the bed was a dressing table that doubled as a small desk. Finally, there was a sunken area two steps down at the end of the room. This was the sitting or reading area, and it had a couch and two chairs, end tables and a television. It was a really cozy area, paneled and done in a craftsman style. If you'll click on the thumbnails at left you can see a few of the pictures we took inside our room at McKay House.


Downstairs Guest Rooms at the McKay House

As I wrote earlier, the McKay house was built in a style that called for a central hall with two rooms on either side, with kitchens, eating areas and other common rooms in back. At McKay House, the four front rooms have been turned into four bedrooms, and each has its own bath. Each pair of rooms on either side can also be used as a two-bedroom suite, since there are connecting doors between them. Fred took a picture inside each of these four bedrooms, and you can have a look at them if you click on the thumbnails below:

You can return to today's index or continue with the next section below.


Friday Evening Walk and Dinner

We had not gotten to Jefferson until mid-afternoon, and we hadn't gotten settled in until close to four-thirty. We inquired of our hosts where we might eat. Being Tuesday, some of the restaurants in this small town were closed. But we put a couple of possibilities on our list of places to look for and then headed off towards the downtown area. Jefferson is not very big, and it is only a ten-block walk from the McKay House to downtown. Below is an aerial view with some of the stops we made marked on it:

As we walked along Delta Street towards downtown, we passed a number of interesting houses, such as this one, another of the many homes we saw that had plaques designating their historical status. Below are more of the houses that we passed; click on the thumbnails to view the full-sized pictures:

A few blocks away from McKay House, on the border of a small park/playing field, we found the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. Like so many of the structures we came across all weekend, this one was also of historical significance. It was built in 1872 for a congregation organized earlier. Once the largest Cumberland Church building in Texas, it has a specially cast bell, and painted clock faces on the steeple show the hours for Sunday School and morning and evening worship. When we got downtown, we angled off along one of the main streets heading southeast and quickly came across something really unique- the Museum of Measurement and Time. It didn't look as if the museum was open yet; there were three people inside unpacking boxes and setting up exhibits. But when they saw us looking in through the window, one of them came and invited the four of us in- so we thus became the first four visitors to the Museum. Inside, there were all manner of timepieces and measuring devices, including the surveyor's tools you can see in the picture. Conversing with one of the fellows setting up the equipment, we found that he had been a surveyor in his career, and had developed a life-long interest in all sorts of measuring devices, collecting quite a few of all different kinds along the way. Oddly enough, the museum was also host to his wife's collection of salt and pepper shakers! I can't possibly recall all the different pairs that there were; I believe there were four or five display cases full of them, of every size and description. (I didn't see a pair featuring the M&Ms, though; we picked up a pair for Jay Enriquez a couple of years ago in Las Vegas.)

Eventually, we got to the area of downtown where the restaurants were, and found a local pub/brewhouse where we stopped and had dinner. They had a pretty extensive menu, so we were all happy. While we were waiting for our food, Fred thought he'd show you the large collection of TVs and neon that took up just about all of the wall space. We were tired from the drive and the walk, so we headed back to the McKay House for some cake and cookies and then bed.

You can return to today's index or continue with the next section below.


Wednesday's "Tour of Homes"

On Wednesday morning, we had our first breakfast at McKay House. I must say that I think we've been spoiled by the breakfasts that Ron Ruckman serves at Ruckman Haus. Although the breakfast was good, and of excellent quality, Ron's cooking seems heartier and more interesting to me. After breakfast, we all got our cameras and headed out to do some serious walking around the residential areas near the McKay House, where we found one beautiful, normal-sized home after another.

Leaving the Alley-McKay House

My first picture of the day was this movie, where we leave the B&B heading west to wind our way through many of the residential blocks nearby.

Fred and I both took lots of pictures of the various houses, and in some cases the historic designation plaques as well. Obviously, you don't need to see multiple views of the same house, so let's take a look at a single picture of each house we thought worthy of recording. If you want to see the larger picture, just click on the thumbnail.

The Graham House, built in 1885 by Captain Charles G. Graham. Some houses had nice, calm landscaping around a clean, renovated home. But at others, like this one, it looked as if a Garden Ridge store had blown up in the front yard.

A nice house on a corner lot. The dual wrought iron stairways were very attractive on the front of the simple home.

An overgrown yard, but an interesting house with the porch, gables and balcony.

The colorfully-painted Azalea House
The Cavalier House

This is a house called "The Captain's Castle;" it had an historic marker for being built as one of the first homes in Jefferson.

This was "The Old Atkins House," first built and occupied by an early resident of Jefferson. The house wasn't particularly interesting, but they did have two Halloween bugs in the front yard that moved occasionally.

The Alley-Carlson House. Built in 1849 by Daniel Nelson Alley, one of the two co-founders of the City of Jefferson, Texas. Given to D. N. Alley, jr. in 1861 as a wedding gift and occupied continuously by family members through 1991, when it was donated to the Jefferson Historical Foundation.

The French Townhouse - built in 1861
A cute little bungalow

The Kennedy Manor B&B
A very attractive, rambling house

Finally, here are some additional pictures of houses (and a church) we found along our walk which, even though they might not have been historic, were still interesting enough to photograph. Click on the thumbnails to view:

You can return to today's index or continue with the next section below.


Walking Around Jefferson

In addition to the homes we walked by near our B&B in Jefferson, we spent a good deal of time just walking around the town itself. There were many interesting buildings and street scenes, and we had lunch at a very, very retro cafe. The exact route we took around town isn't particularly relevant, so what we'll do here is just take a look at the pictures we took.

The Excelsior House Hotel

One of the places we stopped was the very old Excelsior House hotel, and we took a number of pictures there. They actually give you a little tour of the public rooms and of the little garden in the center of the structure. Let's have a look at those pictures.

The Excelsior House is situated downtown right next to the Historical Museum. The Excelsior House is the oldest hotel in East Texas. The frame part was built in the 1850s, and the brick wing was added in 1864. Among the famous guests during the river port days of Jefferson were Presidents Grant and Hayes, and poet Oscar Wilde. It was restored in 1961-63 by the Jessie Allen Wise Garden Club. It became a Texas Historic Landmark in 1966 and was entered in the National Register of Historic Places in 1971.

We came in from the sheltered walkway along the street through the original doors of the hotel, and found ourselves in a small lobby that seemed to be set up for a few guests to relax or watch television in the small sitting area. We were looking around when the man behind the front desk asked us whether we wanted to look around the public areas of the hotel. When we said yes, the man left the antique front desk and went back into the little office.

He emerged followed by a very nice lady who came over and introduced herself. She was, apparently, tied in to the owners of the hotel, and she was very knowledgeable of the history of the building and the antique furnishings. She took us on a 30-minute guided tour around the lobby, dining room, meeting/relaxation/conversation room and the pretty little garden patio in the center of the structure.

First of all, we went through what was apparently a large banquet room and then through there into a smaller sitting/dining room behind it. Both rooms looked like multi-purpose rooms, although each had a dining table in the middle and an ornate chandelier above it. Fred was intrigued by the chandeliers, and you can look at close-up pictures of them here and here. Fred took a number of other pictures while we were touring around these rooms, and you can have a look at them if you click on the thumbnails below:

Out in the middle of the hotel's U-shape there was a very pleasant garden that featured a tall black fountain. You probably couldn't see the fountain clearly in the previous picture, so you should have a look at a close-up of the figures on the fountain. There were places to sit and a long porch along one side of the patio. With our eagle eyes, we were able to discern in the foliage at the base of the fountain some resident turtles partially-hidden in the reeds. The entire aspect of the small garden was very pleasant and restful. We thanked our hostess and went back outside the hotel to continue our walk around downtown Jefferson.

Walking Around Downtown Jefferson

Near the Excelsior House we found the Sterne Fountain. Settling in Jefferson prior to the Civil War, Jacob and Ernestine Sterne became prominent leaders of the community. their early management of the Post Office here and their involvement in civic and cultural activities reflected the dramatic influence Jewish families had on the development of Jefferson. In 1913 the Sternes' children gave this fountain to the city in honor of their parents. Designed for use by people and animals, it was cast by the J. L. Mott foundry of New York. The work o fguiseppe Moretti, it features a statue of Hebe, the Greek goddess of youth.

Just across from the Excelsior, we found the Jay Gould Railroad Car. Built in 1888 by the American Car & Foundry Company of St. Charles, Missouri, this was the private railway car of Jay Gould (1836-1892). A native of New York, gould was a noted financier and the owner of numerous railroad companies, including the Union Pacific, the Missouri Pacific, the International & Great Northern and the Texas Pacific. This car, named the "Atalanta," remained in Gould family ownership until the 1930s. Elaborately designed and elegantly furnished, the Atalanta features two observation rooms, four staterooms, two baths, a butler's pantry, kitchen, dining room and office. Interior materials include mahogany and curly maple woodwork, silver bathroom accessories, and crystal light fixtures. Following Jay Gould's death in 1892, the car was used by his son, George Jay Gould (President of the Texas & Pacific Railroad), and his wife, actress Edith Kingston. The car later was brought to Texas from St. Louis and used as a family residence during the 1930s East Texas oil boom. Purchased in 1953 by the Jessie Allen Wise Garden Club, it was moved to a downtown site in 1954. It remains a focal point in Jefferson's heritage tourism industry.

In the Jefferson Carnegie Library

You have undoubtedly heard of Carnegie libraries before. During his lifetime (he died in 1919), Andrew Carnegie funded the construction of some 1700 libraries in the United States, and another thousand in England, Canada and elsewhere. Not many of the original libraries are still in use as libraries today; most of them have been incorporated into municipal libraries and library systems. In Jefferson, the Carnegie Library is still very much in use, and we went inside to have a look. I made a movie while we were looking around, and you can watch that movie with this player.

We wandered around downtown for quite some time, stopping to see a number of different buildings and historical sites. You may be interested in having a look at some of the best pictures we took, and you can do so if you will click on the thumbnails to the right and below:

Lunch at Glory Dayz

We had lunch downtown in a 1950s-retro cafe called "Glory Dayz at Tarrans Outlet," which was a few blocks up Polk Street from City Hall. The entire cafe was done in a Rock 'n Roll theme, as evidenced by one of the whimsical displays outside. The inside of the restaurant was chock full of all kinds of decorations and collections- including a colorful collection of lawn chair seats that were mounted on the walls. The four of us got a booth by the window, where we could see the entire restaurant. You can see another example of one of the humorous decorations here.

Inside Glory Dayz at Tarrans Outlet

While we were waiting for our food to arrive, I made a movie panning around the inside of the Glory Dayz cafe, and you can have a look at that movie with this player.

You can return to today's index or continue with the next section below.


Big Cypress Bayou Boat Tour

Early records indicate that Jefferson was founded around 1841 on land ceded from the Caddo Indians. At that time, a log jam more than 100 miles long existed on the Red River north of present Natchitoches, Louisiana. The Indians said that this log jam, known as the Great Red River Raft, had always existed. The Red River Raft (or Great Raft) acted as a dam on the river and raised the level of Caddo Lake and the Red River several feet. This rise of Caddo Lake and the corresponding rise in the Big Cypress Bayou at Jefferson permitted commercial riverboat travel to Jefferson from ports such as St. Louis and New Orleans via the Mississippi and Red Rivers.

Jefferson was one of the most important ports in Texas between 1845 and 1872. The town reached its peak population just a few years after the Civil War and is reported to have exceeded 30,000. During this time, Jefferson was the sixth largest town in Texas. There were attempts over the years to remove the raft and permit the normal flow of the Red River, but these attempts were unsuccessful until the discovery of nitroglycerin. In 1873, using nitroglycerin, the Army Corps of Engineers was finally able to clear the raft from the Red River. This lowered the level of Caddo Lake and Big Cypress to the extent that riverboat traffic to Jefferson was no longer commercially feasible. At the peak of river traffic Jefferson had a population of over 7,000. A few years later, it had dropped to a little over 3,000.

After lunch, we walked southeast down Polk Street to cross the Big Cypress Bayou on the automobile bridge. Once across, we turned right on a dirt road that led along the river to the starting point for the Turning Basin River Boat Tour. We'd seen a brochure for the tour at the B&B, and thought we'd enjoy the 45-minute boat ride down the bayou and back. As you can see from the aerial view at left, the bayou is flowing north here at Jefferson, but shortly turns east and eventually empties into Caddo Lake and the Red River. The tour would go down the bayou and then east a ways before turning around and coming back to the dock here near the highway bridge at Polk Street.

When we got to the starting point for the tour, we bought our tickets and hung out for a while waiting for the appointed starting time. From the buildings high on the riverbank, we could look down to the dock area, and, presently, our guide announced that the tour was ready to begin and we filed down the stairs to board our tour boat.

The tour itself was about what we expected. There were eight of us on the small covered barge, and our guide steered from the back of the boat and kept up a non-stop lecture of interesting things about the river, its history and the town of Jefferson. It was all very entertaining and the hour passed all too quickly. Along the way, both Fred and I took a number of pictures and I made a few movies of note, so let's have a look at them. First, if you click on the thumbnail images below, you can see some of the best of the pictures that Fred took:

As for me, I took a number of pictures as well, and if you click on the thumbnail images below you can have a look at them:

Here are more scenes of the Big Cypress Bayou taken from our boat:

Here are the best of the movies I made:

Our Tour Begins

In this movie, the boat has left the dock and our tour guide is explaining a bit about the current state of the Bayou and its use in flood control.

Some Jefferson History

In this movie, our guide is telling us about the importance of Jefferson in early Texas history, and how it was the main port for all of North Texas, second only to Galveston in the amount of freight that moved through it.

Some Bayou Traffic

In this movie, our guide is talking more about the history of the bayou, and you will see the only other boat we passed.

The boat tour was really interesting, and we all enjoyed it. When it was done, we walked around Jefferson for a while more before heading back to the B&B. There, Fred and I changed into Frisbee clothes and the four of us walked over to a small park near the B&B that we'd seen earlier in the day and threw it around for a while while Steve and Mario walked around the area looking at other houses. When we were done, we went back to the McKay House, got cleaned up, and had another very pleasant dinner at a different restaurant in downtown Jefferson.

You can return to today's index or continue with the next section below.


Touring the House of the Seasons

Thursday was our last day in Jefferson, and we planned to drive home after touring the House of the Seasons, which was right across the street from our bed and breakfast. We had a nice breakfast of waffles and eggs, gathered up our things, settled up and then loaded up the car. Then, we walked across the street.

The House of the Seasons was built in 1872 during the glory days of Jefferson, then the largest inland port in Texas. It was built for Benjamin H. Epperson, and it derives its name from the cupola with its differently-colored stained glass windows that create an illusion of the seasons of the year. The home is a fine example of the transition period between Greek Revival and Victorian styles of architecture. In plan and overall form, it is Greek Revival. However, the detailing is Victorian with certain Italianate characteristics, such as the tall arched windows, the bracketed cornices, the gallery, the wrought-iron gatework, the cupola and the projecting bay windows.

The two most unusual features of the home are the cupola (seen in the picture at left) and the dome. Painted on the interior of the dome are some beautiful frescoes (although this picture does not do them justice). These frescoes can be viewed through a circular opening in the first floor ceiling. The House of the Seasons is decorated to reflect the interior design fashion of the 1870s. Many pieces of furniture are original to the house, having been purchased from Miss Jeannie Epperson, Ben's daughter, in 1974.

Benjamin Epperson (1826-1878), a confidant of Sam Houston, was a distinguished lawyer, political leader and entrepreneur. He served many terms in the texas legislature and was elected to the U.S. Congress in 1866, but did not serve because the Southern delegations were not seated. When he built the house, Epperson was listed as one of the wealthiest men in the state and was respected as a major influence in Texas politics.

Throughout most of its history, the House of the Seasons has served as a residence. It has also been used as a boarding house and as the main building of Jefferson College, a World War II Veterans' college.

We arrived at the house a bit early, so we just hung out on the porch. We were eventually joined by five or six other folks also wanting to take the tour. While we were waiting, Fred snapped a few shots of us and the house, and if you will click on the thumbnail images at right you can have a look at them. Eventually, a lady emerged from inside the house to take our tour fees. We chatted with each other and with her for a few minutes before the tour began with a question from Fred about her accent.
Our Tour Begins

In this movie, our tour guide answers a question about her accent that Fred asked, and then began the official tour.

I would have liked to have access to much of the background information and information about the house that our tour guide used in her tour, but I cannot locate that detailed information anywhere. So, since I didn't take notes either, all I can really do is show you some of the better pictures that we took. (There was one room where I made a movie, and so you will be able to get some information about that room- Mr. Epperson's bedroom.) I will group the pictures in sections and label them as best I can remember.

We began on the first floor in the central hall (a Greek Revival influence) and in the four main rooms off of it. One of the unique features of this house is the circular central opening in the middle of the central hall that allows views from the first floor all the way up to the dome. You can see a view of this circular opening taken from the first floor here. Just click on the thumbnail images below to see the best of the pictures that Fred took here on the first floor:

As for my pictures on the first floor, I began by walking the length of the central hall and looking into each of the rooms.

I noticed that the layout here on the first floor was similar to that in the McKay House- there were two main rooms on either side of the main hall going front to back. One of them was a sitting room, and I stepped in there to take a couple of pictures. You can have a look at them by clicking on the thumbnail images at left.

The difference here to the McKay House was that on the left side of the central hall, between the two rooms on that side, there was another hallway that led to a door to the outside. This hallway also contained the main stairs to the second floor. There was another set of stairs that was added after the house was built, this set located at the right rear of the house and used to provide access from the kitchen, which was originally outside, to the bedrooms and the other rooms on the second floor.

To have a look at the best of the other pictures that I took here on the first floor, just click on the thumbnail images below:

After we'd walked through three of the rooms on the first floor (the fourth was used more for storage than anything else), we ascended in a group up the main stairs to the second floor.

Second Floor Central Hall

The second floor was laid out much like the first, with three bedrooms and a sitting room/family room in the four corners of the house. We gathered at the railing surrounding the central circular opening, and we could look down to the first floor below. At the end of the second floor hall that looked out to the front of the house, there was an antique settee and some plants positioned to take advantage of the sunlight (although this picture is a little dark). I noticed that the cat that had been in the hall on the first floor when we arrived had apparently followed us upstairs and had now taken up a position on the settee, so I went over to pet it and take its picture.

As I said, the stairway was situated on the left side of the house, and when we came out onto the second floor, the entrance to Mr. Epperson's bedroom was to our right, in the left front corner of the house. You can see the archway (another Italianate influence) from the stairway out into the second floor and also the entrance to Mr. Epperson's bedroom here.
Mr. Epperson's bedroom was probably the nicest room (for my taste) that we toured (although the music room was a close second). I found the bedroom to be inviting, relaxing and very colorful; the group and our guide spent quite a few minutes here.

In Mr. Epperson's Bedroom

In this movie, our guide talks a bit about how the bedroom came to be decorated so colorfully. Have a look at my still shots of the bedroom by clicking on the thumbnail images below:


On the other side of the stairway hall, at the left back corner of the house, there was another bedroom, done in a much "heavier" style that Mr. Epperson's. It was way too dark for my taste. Behind that bedroom, at the back of the house, was a room that had apparently been a bedroom when the house was built but was later transformed into a bathroom/dressing room when it became practical to run water to it (an event that didn't occur until well into the 20th century in places like Jefferson). On the other side of the house there were two bedrooms with a connecting room between them. Only the front bedroom was set up for the tour. The most interesting item in it was an antique highchair. This was one of the items original to the house that was purchased by the foundation that now owns it from Epperson's heirs. When we emerged from the last room we toured, we found ourselves in the nice sitting area at the rear of the second floor hall.

Just before we left the second floor to go back downstairs, our tour guide let each of us walk back along the stairway hall to look up the second flight of stairs that led to the cupola. For a number of reasons, our guide said, visitors were not allowed to climb those stairs, but we could see the entrance to the cupola at the top. It would have been interesting to have been able to go up. But instead we descended back down the stairs to the main floor where, after our guide answered some final questions, our tour ended. As we were leaving the house, Fred noticed that the cat had followed us down, and now sat on the bottom of the stairs.

You can return to today's index or continue with the next section below.


We Return Home

Our visit to Jefferson had come to an end, and we had to get back to Dallas so Mario could do a concert review this evening. We could have simply retraced our path, but we decided to go back a different way, heading north to I-20 and back into Dallas across Lake Ray Hubbard.

On the way back to Dallas, we stopped at a local place out by Sulphur Springs that Fred had found on the Internet for a late lunch, and we were back at Steve and Mario's house by late afternoon. Everybody enjoyed the trip, and it would be nice to visit some other small Texas towns. Both Waxahachie and Jefferson were interesting, but we've only scratched the surface of neat places to visit in the state.

You can return to today's index or use the links below to go to the photo album page for a different day.

November 6, 2010: Fall Festival at the Dallas Arboretum
October 13-21, 2010: A Trip to New Mexico and Arizona
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