Tag Archives: Americana

Historic Ben Wheeler, Texas

Pink Ben Wheeler, Texas, Hogfest Bus Photo Print

Pink Ben Wheeler, Texas, Hogfest Bus

Mailmen don’t usually get the attention they deserve. The founders of Ben Wheeler, a community in East Texas, did value its first mailman by naming the community for the man who carried the mail.

Benjamin (Ben) Wheeler, a late 19th century mailman, carried mail from the Van Zandt county seat of Canton to Edom, Texas.

In 1876, a post office was established in the home of George W. Clough.  This spot along the mail route was then named for Wheeler, who stopped to spend the night at Clough’s home on his route.  Clough’s house was about half-way between Canton and Edom.  At Clough’s, Wheeler also got water for his hard-working mail-carrier mule.  Clough later built the first store in Ben Wheeler, and he and his neighbors built a school house on his land.



The Ben Wheeler Pink Hog Bus has advertised the Ben Wheeler, Texas, HogFest by participating in the Tyler, Texas, Rose Festival Parade. Here is the bus when it drove in the 2011 parade.

Welcome to Historic Ben Wheeler Sign 24x10

Welcome to Historic Ben Wheeler Sign


Learn about the history of Ben Wheeler, Texas, and its many activities, including music and food and its annual Fall Hogfest, on the Ben Wheeler Official Website. Watch the video on the site, too! Ben Wheeler is known as the Best Hidden Small Town in Texas.

Ben Wheeler Facebook Page.


Filed under Photography, Travel

Texas Rose Festival Parade

The 2011 Tyler, Texas, Rose Festival Queen.

The 2011 Texas Rose Festival Queen, Morgan Elizabeth Rippy, waves to the crowd on the leading float in the Rose Festival Parade in Tyler.

Another snowstorm is forecast for the Kansas City area. We still haven’t entirely cleared our driveway from the foot of snow that fell in the last storm a few days ago. How to chase away this wintry gloom? I’m taking a photographic visit to the Texas Rose Festival Parade in Tyler.

These photographs are from October 2011. I’ve been to two Rose Festivals in Tyler. I love them! Marching bands, majorettes in cowboy hats, tractors, Shriners in silly vehicles, Smart cars, dogs from animal shelters, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, fire trucks, army vehicles, gymnasts, politicians running for re-election, assorted citizens from various groups, lots of horses and, especially, the elaborately gowned Rose Festival Queen and the many members of her fantastically dressed court.  Have I left out anyone?  Here are the Queen’s Tea photos.


The Texas Rose Festival started in 1933. The 2013 Texas Rose Festival is October 17th – 20th. This year’s festival, the 80th, features “Raindrops on Roses and Other Favorite Things” as its theme.
About the Texas Rose Festival.
Official Texas Rose Festival Website.


Filed under Photography, Travel