Year-End List: Most Popular Posts of 2019

by Paula Bosse

greenville-reservoir-house_jan-2018_paula-bosseMy “fixer-upper” dream house on Greenville Avenue…

by Paula Bosse

Another year is finally grinding to a close, and that means the appearance of one last “year-end” list, ranking the popularity of posts from the past year (one of which rather surprisingly shot up the list after having been posted only 8 days ago!).

As always, thank you to everyone who reads, comments, shares, and enjoys Flashback Dallas. I’ll be embarking on Year 7 in a couple of months, and I’m happy to say that I still enjoy writing about Dallas history as much now as I did when I started in 2014. Thanks to all of you for coming along for the ride.

Here are the most popular Flashback Dallas posts of 2019, starting with the most popular. To see each full post, click on the title; to see larger images, click on the picture.

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1.  “MY DREAM HOUSE AT THE GREENVILLE AVENUE RESERVOIR” (August)

The fact that this is the #1 post of 2019 amazes me. I see this little “house” all the time, and I have loved it since I was a child, when I dreamed of living in it, imagining it a huge, magical place inside — like Snoopy’s dog house. I guess others have also been fascinated with this very out-of-place little building at Greenville and Mockingbird. We should form a club. (And I kind of STILL want to live there!)

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majestic-hotel_portal_postcard2.  “THE MAJESTIC HOTEL / THE PARK HOTEL / THE AMBASSADOR HOTEL: R.I.P. — 1904-2019” (May) 

I wrote this the day the much-loved landmark in The Cedars burned down — luckily I had been collecting images of the hotel with the intention of one day writing about it and was ready when the disaster happened. I still haven’t driven past where the building used to stand. It had a good long run, but it still had many good years in it.

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3.  “CASA LINDA AERIALS — 1940s” (August) 

I love the main photo in this post which shows the Casa Linda Plaza shopping area at Garland Road and Buckner Boulevard before much of anything other than the theater had been built, with White Rock Lake and the still-in-operation firehouse in the background. As a lack of housing in post-war Dallas reached a crisis point, eastward expansion was inevitable. 

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4.  “BEAUTIFUL LAKE CLIFF — ca. 1906” (August)

This post is filled with pretty postcards that make a person feel incredibly nostalgic for a time and place they’ve never actually known. It would be nice to take a trip back to the Oak Cliff of a hundred or more years ago to visit the Lake Cliff seen in these postcards, in the days when it was one of the city’s most popular amusement destinations.

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5.  “THE LEGENDARY CHRISTMAS CARDS OF ANN RICHARDS AND BETTY McKOOL” (December)

This Christmas post — from last week! — catapulted to the fifth most popular post of the year. I think Ann and Betty would be happy with that — I know I am! (Incidentally, I’ve just added another card to the collection — I hope to add more as they become known to me — I’m aiming for a full set of images!)

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6.  “THE STAR LOUNGE, 4311 BRYAN” (May)

I can’t say exactly what it is about this photo that everyone seems to love, but… everyone seems to love this photo. It helps that there is some interesting history in the 4300 block of Bryan, involving dynamite, extortion and racketeers in the 1930s, followed by a period of space-theme lounges in the ’60s, followed by adult bookstores in the ’70s. Old East Dallas has got it going on.

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7.  “RIP TORN AND ANN WEDGEWORTH’S DALLAS WEDDING — 1955” (July) 

I loved Rip Torn — if I see he’s in a movie, I’ll watch it — and I’m glad this post was so popular. Sometimes I feel like I’m playing “Six Degrees of Separation” when I hear news of the death of a notable person: I bet myself that I can find some sort of connection the Dearly Departed had with Dallas. I actually knew that Rip had ties to Dallas because I had previously written about actress Ann Wedgeworth and remembered that she had married Rip at what is now First United Methodist Church downtown. The old yearbook photos in the post are pretty great. R.I.P, Rip.

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8.  “GLORIA VANDERBILT’S 4 HUSBANDS… AND THEIR DALLAS CONNECTIONS” (June) 

I had employed that “Six Degrees of Separation” thing when I heard that Gloria Vanderbilt had died. It still surprises me, but I managed to connect each of her four husbands (Pat DiCicco, Leopold Stokowski, Sidney Lumet, and Wyatt Cooper) to Big D, which was a fun exercise and surprisingly interesting.

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9.  “SUPER-COOL ROGER MILLER IN DALLAS — 1960s” (October) 

I apparently share a love of Roger Miller with many of the readers of Flashback Dallas. This post, which includes a couple of video clips of Roger in Dallas, steadily racks up hits. His quipped response to a Channel 8 reporter’s question of whether he was “serious” when he wrote “You Can’t Roller Skate in a Buffalo Herd” is classic.

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10.  “TEMPLE EMANU-EL, AT THE ‘NORTHERN LIMITS OF DALLAS’ — 1957” (January) 

Photos of the brand-new location of the not-yet-landscaped Temple Emanu-El in North Dallas served as the springboard to write about this historic Jewish congregation founded in Dallas in 1873. The aerial photo from 1957 showing loads of empty land around Temple Emanu-El above Northwest Highway was one of my favorite photos posted in 2019.

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Below are the top 3 all-time most popular Flashback Dallas posts:

  1. “HOW TO ACCESS THE HISTORICAL DALLAS MORNING NEWS ARCHIVE” (2015)
  2. “BONNIE PARKER: ‘BURIED IN AN ICE-BLUE NEGLIGEE’ — 1934″ (2016)
  3. “CARHOPS AS SEX SYMBOLS — 1940” (2015)

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Sources & Notes

See all three 2019 “Best Of Flashback Dallas” lists here.

See all Flashback Dallas Year-End lists — past and present — here.

Thanks again for reading — may 2020 be a happy and productive year for us all!

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Copyright © 2019 Paula Bosse. All Rights Reserved.