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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Lampasas in Lampasas County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
 

Hostess House

 
 
Hostess House Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By QuesterMark, December 1, 2013
1. Hostess House Marker
Inscription.  Mineral springs such as nearby Hancock Springs flow into Sulphur Creek, providing Lampasas with waters for recreation and health. The Hancock Springs tract became a fashionable tourist attraction and convention and encampment site in the late 19th century; by the 1880s, Lampasas advertised as “The Saratoga of the South.” In 1911, Dan Culver excavated a large open-air swimming pool in Hancock Park, utilizing spring-fed waters. Charles Baker and L.N. Little bought the property in 1929. Materials from the Texas Baptist Encampment dining hall were used to build the Hostess House south of the pool.

The two-story frame building included a reception hall and changing room for the swimming pool, with an open-air dance platform on the second floor. Local bands and nationally known performers made the venue a popular destination. In 1936, the city of Lampasas bought the park, including the Hostess House. During World War II, the U.S. government leased Hancock Park as a recreation area, called Panther Park, for soldiers stationed at Camp Hood (later Fort Hood). In 1947, a golf course opened to the west and improvements to the Hostess
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House included a limestone veneer. After additional renovations to park facilities in 1948, Texas Governor Beauford Jester and U.S. Congressman Lyndon Johnson attended a rededication ceremony.

For many years following, the people of Lampasas continued to swim in the pool and attend dances and proms on the second floor. By the 1990s, the building had fallen into disrepair. The city leased the building to the Oran Milo Roberts chapter of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas, which coordinated fundraising to renovate and restore the Hostess House and continue its public use.
 
Erected 2007 by Texas Historical Commission. (Marker Number 13999.)
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Notable Buildings. In addition, it is included in the Former U.S. Presidents: #36 Lyndon B. Johnson series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1911.
 
Location. 31° 3.253′ N, 98° 10.96′ W. Marker is in Lampasas, Texas, in Lampasas County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of American Legion Memorial Highway (U.S. 281) and Plum Street, on the right when traveling south. Located in Hancock Park. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1600 US Hwy 281 S, Lampasas TX 76550, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Hancock Springs (within shouting distance of this marker); Hancock Springs Bathhouse
Hostess House and Historical Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By QuesterMark, December 1, 2013
2. Hostess House and Historical Marker
(about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The 1957 Flood (about 700 feet away); Cook Cemetery (approx. half a mile away); Matt and Rebecca Smith House (approx. 0.6 miles away); Malone-Manuel House (approx. 0.7 miles away); St. Mary's Episcopal Church (approx. 0.7 miles away); First Baptist Church (approx. 0.7 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Lampasas.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on January 4, 2014, by QuesterMark of Fort Worth, Texas. This page has been viewed 756 times since then and 11 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on January 4, 2014, by QuesterMark of Fort Worth, Texas. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.

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Feb. 25, 2024