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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Ennis in Ellis County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
 

Minnie McDowal

 
 
Minnie McDowal Marker image. Click for full size.
By James Hulse, January 11, 2021
1. Minnie McDowal Marker
Inscription.  

Minnie McDowal grew up in Ennis, where she graduated from High School and married her sweetheart Robert T. McDowal. They had two beloved children, Elizabeth Ann and Robert T., III.

In the late 1940's, Minnie began working at the Plaza Theatre that once stood at this location. She worked as a cashier collecting 10 cents for a ticket while her children enjoved playing and watching a movie. Over the years, the theatre changed hands several times and was eventually renamed the Tara Theatre. The theatre wat purchased by the Mitchell family in 1960 and became the first indoor theatre owned by Lee Roy Mitchell, who later founded Cinemark USA. INC.

Minnie loved working for Lee Roy, and Lee Roy greatly admired her dedication and work ethic. She was responsible for bookkeeping but was quick to help with concessions and picking up movie reels. She loved greeting her friends and neighbors at the ticket booth knowing they would enjoy watching a movie. When Cinemark formed in 1984 and moved to Dallas, Minnie continued working by commuting from Ennis to South Dallas until she retired at 78.

In 1992, the theatre was severely
The Minnie McDowal Marker is the first marker on the left of the two markers. image. Click for full size.
By James Hulse, January 11, 2021
2. The Minnie McDowal Marker is the first marker on the left of the two markers.
damaged by a wind storm and was reluctantly demolished. Lee Roy Mitchell and family donated the property to the City of Ennis in 1993 in honor of their beloved, long time employee, Minnie McDowal.

The original park was dedicated to her in 1993, reconstructed in 2017. The park has evolved into a beautiful public gathering place that remains dedicated to Minnie and her devotion to the citizens of Ennis, the Mitchell family and the motion picture industry.
 
Erected by City of Ennis.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Industry & CommerceParks & Recreational Areas.
 
Location. 32° 19.672′ N, 96° 37.731′ W. Marker is in Ennis, Texas, in Ellis County. Marker is at the intersection of West Knox Street and North Dallas Street, on the left when traveling west on West Knox Street. The marker is located at the Minnie McDowal Park. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Ennis TX 75119, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. LaJuan Schlegel (a few steps from this marker); Ennis National Bank Building (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Pierce Park (about 500 feet away); Railroads in Ennis (about 500 feet away); Town of Ennis (about 500 feet away); Katie Daffan
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(about 500 feet away); The Southern Pacific Railroad in Ennis (about 700 feet away); Ennis City Hall (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Ennis.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on January 17, 2021. It was originally submitted on January 17, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas. This page has been viewed 42 times since then. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on January 17, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas. • J. Makali Bruton was the editor who published this page.
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Feb. 28, 2021