Sights of Ft. Stockton

Annie Riggs Museum

Annie Riggs lead a colorful life and bore 10 children to two husbands.  She was born November 24, 1856 near Las Cruces, NM to George & Mary Frazier.  After the Civil War the family moved to Ft. Stockton.

In 1877, Annie married James Johnson, who became the first Sheriff of Pecos County; in St. Joseph Catholic Church in Ft. Stockton TX, unfortunately the marriage lasted only long enough to produce 6 children, while Annie ran the popular boarding house called Johnson Hotel.

By the late 1880’s when the marriage failed and James moved away, in 1891 when she married Barney Kemp Riggs in a Civil Ceremony, and they had 4 more children in addition to the one child Barney brought to the marriage.  

Barney received a life sentence for murder in the Arizona Territorial Penitentiary in Yuma, Riggs saved the wardens life when a riot broke out and later received a pardon, and told to leave the territory and never return

Annie was granted a divorce in 1901 and her son-in-law from her first marriage, Buck Chadborn, was named trustee for Annie’s settlement.  On April 1902 Buck shot Barney in self-defense and, since Riggs did not leave a will, the courts awarded his estate to Annie.   She used the assets to purchase the Koehler Hotel in 1904, and changed the name to Riggs Hotel, which she operated as a hotel or boarding house almost up to the time of her death at age 73, in 1931.

Anne Riggs Museum 1

Annie purchased the hotel for $5000.00 and the rate for a bed was $.50 cents, with family style meals @ 35 cents.  It was operated by various members of her family into the 1940’s then in 1955 heirs of Annie Riggs deeded the old hotel to the Fort Stockton Historical Society to be operated as a museum.

This is a must see!  On one of the walk around porch, hang many branding Irons.   It was fun to walk through the rooms, not just look through doors, as you can only do in many museums.  I have posted several pictures that I took of the outside of the museum; you will have to go through to see the inside.  It is very well preserved. 

Also you may be able to see the inside of the Grey Mule Saloon; it was closed the day we were there.

Annie Riggs Memorial Museum 301 S. Main St. FT. Stockton, TX 79735 432-336-2167

Pecos County Jail

Pecos County Jail

The old Pecos County Jail, one of the oldest structures in West, Texas was built in 1883 of 2 foot thick Limestone blocks that still show imbedded animal fossils; in the close-up picture you will see them.  It was enlarged in 1913 and now includes a museum in what used to be the Sheriff, Deputies and jailers.  The second floor housed the prisoners.   We toured the jail and found that the inside was pretty dismal for the prisoners, but then is jail supposed to be pleasant?  It is all grey; walls, floors and bars.  We turned a corner and jumped d by a prisoner in a black and white striped suit.  Scared the bejeesus out of me.

closeup of fossel imbedded in Limestone block

Jail cell in Peco County Jail

Pecos County Jail 2 jpg

We took several pictures of the cells and one of the large cell with tables, and a shower that was added in 1955. Before that buckets of water were carried up the stairs access to the cells up stairs is by a winding metal staircase.

 

Across from the jail is a nice park called Zero Stone, named because it was used as a zero marking point for all surveys.   The Pecos, County Jail, Zero Stone Park, Annie Riggs Museum, and the Grey Mule Saloon are all within easy walking distance.   

Zero Stone Park with Gazebo

 

Be sure to see the Ft. Stockton Museum where they housed the Buffalo Soldiers and, don’t forget to go see Pisano Pete! 

BTW, just up the street from the Jail is a nice restaurant called “B’s”.  They make a very good sandwich and fresh cut and cooked while you wait, fries, and reasonably priced, too! 

If you are looking for a good priced RV Park in Ft. Stockton, we stayed at Ft. Stockton RV for a month and they were very nice to us.  Dottie helped us find a place near the WiFi tower and Pool.  It is a short drive to Town and very little highway noise, although it is not far off the highway and easy back on, too!. 

Happy Traveling!

 

Published by Time Traveler of Life

Biography Creating worlds, characters, and wielding power like a madwoman, making my characters happy, sad, angry, and some of them with no redeeming qualities. I probably shouldn’t admit this, but I sometimes laugh out loud when I am writing a scene, and I have been known to cry when one of my favorites has to die. I am a left-handed Gemini, what do you expect? Reading bedtime stories to my two children until they fell asleep or until they just told me to go away, was fun. Making up wild stories for my grandchild, and creating Halloween costumes from Cowboys to a Dragon, was another favorite thing to do. I missed that so much when they were grown, that I started writing. My yearly newsletters frequently were drafted third-person by my Love Birds, Miranda our motorhome, and by Sir Fit the White Knight, our faithful Honda. Throughout the years, some of my creative talents centered around writing letters of complaint expressing my displeasure with services or products. One crucial, at least to my Son, was a note to our local school bus driver petitioning her to allow him back on the bus. He was kicked off for making an obscene gesture at his buddy. I reminded her that it was not directed at her, and that “obscenity can be in the eye of the beholder,” kids use that gesture as a greeting. He rode the bus until he graduated. I loved driving my English teacher crazy. Leaving a “continued next week” at the end of my five handwritten pages required each week. He was one of many people that suggested I “do something about my writing.” I graduated from the School of Hard Knocks at the top of my class. After 30 years, in the trenches as a Real Estate Professional, I have found that truth is stranger than fiction. My books are filled with characters I met in that profession. Their names were changed to protect the guilty. Others were from people we met traveling around the country in Miranda, our Motorhome. I am married nearly 60 years to the love of my life, Shirl, and partner-produced two exceptionally talented children, and one grandchild who is our pride and joy.

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