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Old 03-25-2008, 05:22 PM
 
Location: Hot Springs, Arkansas
452 posts, read 1,491,417 times
Reputation: 281

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Downtown Central Avenue...way back when the sidewalks were wooden and the streets were unpaved I believe. It destroyed several buildings. When you get settled, you can go to the library and find all the books that have been written by locals and some by other folks. I guess all towns have a history to talk about but Hot Springs was THE place for Al Capone types during that era when they wanted a neutral place to relax. They came for the baths and the booze and the gambling and the lawmen who looked the other way.

The big shoot out was between the lawmen in maybe the late 1800's or very early 1900's. One faction against another. Even the women folk got involved. I have a newspaper article somewhere here..buried in all my paperwork. Politics was rough back then. I'm pretty sure that I read somewhere that the gambling houses were shut down here because Washington D.C. bigwigs felt it would hurt their chances for election. Hot Springs was a thorn in somebody's side who had the influence to git 'er done!

In the "old" days, Blacks were prohibited from using the bath houses on Bath House Row on Central Avenue...BUT, they had their own facility off of Spring Steet I believe or maybe Opera Street?? Not sure. Anyhow...it has been described as extremely fancy and catering to the wealthy Blacks who lived here and came to visit. Apparently, it put the ones on Central Avenue to shame. In more ways than one.

I could go on and on....it's mind boggling the things that happened here and it makes me glad to be in THIS century, but history...good or bad....has made this town what it is today. We're darned proud of it now. Might have a way to go in some things but it's a pretty nice place to call home.
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Old 03-25-2008, 05:35 PM
 
2 posts, read 3,920 times
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Do you know about the tunnels under old hot springs? Not many people do and they keep the entrance secret.
Capone could go to and from different places with out walking out the front door.
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Old 03-25-2008, 05:41 PM
 
Location: Hot Springs, Arkansas
452 posts, read 1,491,417 times
Reputation: 281
There is one LARGE tunnel that runs under Central that the water runs through...and that would be probably where they all woudl have connected. I hadn't heard or read of any that were used in that manner ... but wouldn't surprise me at all. I love a good mystery
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Old 03-26-2008, 02:11 AM
 
Location: The Great State of Arkansas
5,981 posts, read 15,909,467 times
Reputation: 7531
I just finished a book called The Bookmaker's Daughter...an absolutely fascinating read with all kinds of HS history woven through it...(if it wasn't 3:00 in the morning I could get the author for you! - spouse probably doesn't want me digging through the bedroom books right now, imagine that)...it talks quite a bit about Al Capone and other famous names we've heard that made HS their winter home and how HS was laid out during that time period. I enjoyed it more for the historical aspect than anything else, but a good read anyway.

CESpeed - glad to hear things are going along for you!
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Old 03-26-2008, 08:20 AM
 
Location: Hot Springs, Arkansas
452 posts, read 1,491,417 times
Reputation: 281
I've read excerpts from her book. She was right in the thick of it.
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Old 03-26-2008, 04:24 PM
 
Location: Hot Springs, AR
27 posts, read 122,063 times
Reputation: 31
Default I may have found a house!

Hey that is great...there are so many things to do here in Hot Springs. The spring, summer and fall are just full of everything. I think you made a great choice when you picked Hot Springs. I first came here when I was 12 and told my family that I wanted to move here when I grew up. I did just that and have been here for nearly thirty years! Hope you enjoy it as much as I have...PineHollowGal
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Old 03-29-2008, 11:40 AM
 
9,602 posts, read 23,092,444 times
Reputation: 5160
"Bookmaker's Daughter, a memory unbound" is by Shirley Abbott..A fascinating read.
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