Details for Texas Tourist Camp Complex (Atlas Number 5497005275)

Historical Marker — Atlas Number 5497005275

Data

Marker Number 5275
Atlas Number 5497005275
Marker Title Texas Tourist Camp Complex
Index Entry Texas Tourist Camp Complex
Address US 81/87 - 900 Block
City Decatur
County Wise
UTM Zone 14
UTM Easting 632363
UTM Northing 3677508
Subject Codes automobile topics; buildings; inns, hotels, motels
Marker Year 1994
Designations Recorded Texas Historic Landmark
Marker Location 900-904 US 81/87 south -Decatur
Marker Size 27" x 42"
Marker Text Local businessman E. F. Boydston (1888-1945) purchased this site, a former feed lot, in 1927 for $400. Recognizing a potential business opportunity in offering services to the traveling public, he built a wooden shed and gas station in 1927. Travelers were allowed to build campfires during overnight stays, and by 1931 Boydston added three wooden cabins with garages to the camp complex. The buildings later were faced with rock, and more cabins and garages were added in 1935. The original wooden gas station was covered with petrified wood in 1935 when the highway was widened and remained in operation by the Boydston family until 1988. The Texas Lunchroom, a one-room frame building, was built in 1929. Renamed the Texas Cafe in 1935 and faced with stone to match other buildings in the complex, it was enlarged to provide second-floor living quarters. Popular with local high school and college students, as well as families and the traveling public, it was closed in the 1960s after a highway bypass built west of town diverted traffic from this area. The cafe reopened in 1993. One of the few intact examples of tourist camps built throughout Texas in the mid-20th century, this property is significant for its association with the early development of automobile tourism.