Saturday, September 24, 2022

Mineral Wells Texas Mystery Solved - With Pictures

Back in 2010, when transcribing an interview my grandmother gave back in 1987, I heard her mention that her mother and grandfather spent some time in Mineral Wells, Texas. She didn't know the details, but I assumed there had to be some basis to the story. One does not make up a town like Mineral Wells, Texas.

In 2020 I found evidence that they were there in 1907 and 1909. But they were back in St. Louis by the 1910 census.

This week I received from a cousin some photographic evidence - and an explanation for what they were doing there.

Morris, Molly, Henry and Pearl Blatt riding donkeys in Mineral Wells Texas

Morris, Molly, Henry and Pearl Blatt in Mineral Wells Texas. They pose in front of a log cabin. Henry is holding a rifle.

These pictures are of my second great grandfather, Morris Blatt, his second wife, Molly/Mala Kellner Katz Blatt, and their two children Henry and Pearl. Blanche and my great grandmother, Annie, Morris's children with his first wife, were adults at the time of the photographs. 

Annie was 19 in 1907, and is recorded in the 1907 Mineral Wells city directory. She is not in the 1909, and likely returned to St. Louis on her own by then. That might mean these photographs are from after she left, or she just wasn't in them.

These have the feel of vacation pictures to me. My cousin says Molly had arthritis and they were there for her health. This may be accurate as apparently the Mineral Wells were trendy in the early 1900s as a place to cure ailments. 

My cousin stated that Henry ultimately would own land in Mineral Wells, and a son of Molly’s from her first marriage, Harry Katz, lived there as a shoe salesman. I have found Harry living 90 miles north in Wichita Falls, and sufficient records to verify it’s him. 

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