Thursday, April 7, 2022

"A day without laughter is a day wasted." Charlie Chaplin

This was my Dove quote the other day.  I asked Pat if I made him laugh.  He said "yes," but I'm not sure that is in a good way.😉

I had so many things to start with today (Thursday), but I decided laughter should be at the top.  Pat HAS to wear a cap when he goes out.  Well, with the 30+ mph winds today... and the wind coming at the back, Pat goes out with one hand on his hat and the other on the RV door handle.  Quickly he let go of the hat to try and keep the RV door from ripping off.  It really is that windy!  He was chasing that hat all across the parking lot.

We get back from touring Elk City this afternoon and once again, one hand on the hat.  I told him several times that this might be a good day to just forget the hat.  He lets go of the hat to hook up the car and there goes the hat again, with him in fast pursuit.  If only I had gotten a video!  I was laughing so hard tears were running down my face (at least it was down my face, not down my legs). 🤣 Pat said it's a good thing someone makes me laugh.  

Wow, what a drop in temperatures.  Tues. It was a record 96°, Thursday the high was 68°, and low tonight 37°.  Hope this doesn't keep getting worse as we go north.  Also, those horrible 30+ mph winds out of the NE, NNE were hitting us in the front or side all morning.  Every whistle and squeal I've seen others complain about, we experienced today.  Even with the steering stabilizer Pat had a hard time.  And gas mileage?  We won't even go there!  

On Weds. we stayed at a small RV Park in Albany TX, population 1,800.  It had 11 full hook-ups and most appeared to be long-term residents.  I've said before, when we are traveling daily to get to a final destination we look more for the right daily driving distance, not something to see or do.  The fun part is, very few places don't have something to see or do.  You just have to look for it!

Top Hand RV Park

Not far from Albany was the Fort Griffin State Historical Park.  There were a lot of ruins, as well as a campground.  In fact, had we known about it before we would have spent the night there.  It was a western defensive fort from 1866-1881.  The nearby town, Ft. Griffin, was one of the 5 wildest western towns, and for that reason soldiers were forbidden to go there.  When the Fort closed in 1881 the town also dissolved.  Nearby, Albany was already the county seat, and in 1881 added a railroad terminal making it a cattle shipping point.

administration building


The large building is 1 of 4 mess halls.

The menu was simple and pretty much the same for all meals, coffee, bread, and beef.

Vervain (Verbena)


Each small building had a set of bunks on each side.

Settlers store (civilian merchant) was composed of 6 buildings, and sold canned goods, guns, ammo, and sometimes liquor.


The bakery, made of stone, was the most substantial building.  It made up to 800 loaves of bread a day.

The Jackson-Ward House.  In 1874 Jackson, a merchant in the towns of Ft. Griffin and Albany built this house. It was purchased by Samual Ward in 1880 and remained in the Ward family until 1943.

The official Texas state Longhorn herd resides here.

We were staying only a few blocks from the town square so after returning from the fort we walked up town.  Every year for 2 weeks in June they host an outdoor musical, the Fort Griffin Fandangle. 

The Shakleford County Courthouse was built in 1883-1884. 

Albany's first stone Mercantile store was built in stages beginning in 1878. The building was restored in 1973-1974.

We came across a park with the Ledbetter picket home.  Ledbetter established a salt works in 1862 and built this picket-styled home in the mid 1880's.  It was restored in 1953.

Salt kettles

The Albany train station was built in 1881 and now serves as the Visitor's Center.
Where are the Pieper's now?  Elk City, OK.

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