Texas' most interesting ghost town?
is to the staff of Texas Escapes. Three reasons that come to mind
are: #1 It doesn't mind being called a ghost town. It is what it is
and it's certainly not pretentious (if it ever was). It is proud of
it's fascinating history - but while many former towns are proud -
Medicine Mound can boast having
the most affectionate and charming overseer any town could ask for
in the form of Myna Potts (reason #2).
Photo courtesy Teresa Byrd, 2006
the first two reasons are not enough, then let us include Myna's helpers,
John and Geri Bates. If you think you're in "good hands" with your
choice of insurance companies - their logo only has two hands - while
Medicine Mound has six capable
hands. Our correspondence with the town's caretakers included letters
from Myna - from which we assembled the following "interview." - Editor
"We surely are a bit off the beaten track, but it is
the track our fathers picked long ago. Now [TxDoT] chose a spot on
Hwy 287 to build a wonderful rest stop, to view the mounds to the
Photo courtesy Geri Bates, 2006
|The W.W. Cole
Photo courtesy Geri Bates, 2006
own the store (now the museum),
which was my fathers grocery store. He died in 1966. The Cole
building was originally the bank, drugstore and post office. Only
these two buildings now survive. I have part of each business' fixtures.
Now these two buildings were built in 1933 because the town burned.
The original town buildings were wooden. The solid granite round rocks
were brought from Oklahoma and are actually prehistoric gravel.
I always knew I wanted to do something with the buildings and as I
worked with Bill Neal while he did his book on the area, it occured
to me there would never again be such a collection of area pictures.
I included those that were donated or were in my collection - and
those that were not donated I had photocopied. So this is how it started.
Medicine Mound old photo courtesy Teresa Byrd, restored by John Bates
have not sought publicity since I have always been very low key. I
really want RURAL AMERICA to be kept in place. I am 79 and know I
can not continue as I have in the past. I did quite a few things in
the past. The first Saturday in November I cooked turkeys and ham
and friends brought dishes and we had a feast. Now John Bates is taking
the "Bull by the Horns".
Yes, I have never been far from Medicine Mounds. I have been to a
few places but MM has always been home. Now, I will tell you that
I am from the generation where your parents picked and chose your
friends. I remember slipping off to one family's home - they had wooden
floors and no linoleum, but it was very clean. All the family had
lovely voices, and they could sing as well as play musical instruments.
Such talent! - and what fun to go there.
Museum old bottles display
Photo courtesy John Bates, 2006
|Stetson hat and
hat box. Medicine Mound Museum Display
Photo courtesy John Bates, October 2006
|My plans for
the future? To keep Medicine Mound together and to fit into this world
of tomorrow. I have had opportunties to split up the collection, but
[the interested parties] have only wanted the "keepers." It's true
some things could go, but for the present I'll keep the things together
which represent the rural America I knew."
- Myna Potts, November 2006
Medicine Mound, Texas
Escapes, in its purpose to preserve historic, endangered and vanishing
Texas, asks that anyone wishing to share their local history, stories,
landmarks and recent or vintage photos, please contact