THE INTERSECTION OF THE NATIONAL OLD TRAILS HIGHWAY AND ROUTE 66 – CROSSROADS OF THE PAST AND FUTURE
|A mystery photo from the National
Old Trails Highway – do you know
where this is?
I awoke this morning at 5:00 AM bright eyed and bushy tailed. There was also an almost overwhelming sense of being buried alive, which like the pressure gauge on a steam boiler that is hovering just at the edge of the red zone, is a pretty good indicator that it might be a good idea to cut back on projects and rethink the schedule.
The first item of business was a visit to the barbershop. Apparently I wasn’t the only one who had decided to get a haircut at 5:30 in the morning.
Breakfast, correspondence, and correlating a priority list for the weekend that included resolution of a few issues with the History Press project followed. Next, a meeting with Werner Fleischman, the visionary Swiss developer that is playing a pivotal role in the transformation of the Kingman historic district.
As always, the meeting with Werner was fascinating as well as invigorating and enjoyable. The restoration of the Brunswick Hotel is temporary on hold as he turns attentions and resources toward more pressing projects.
To date, Werner has shepherded the transformation of two historic properties. The former showroom for the Old Trails Garage where gleaming Cadillac’s and La Salle’s were once displayed is now a delightful ice cream parlor and bakery. Homemade waffle cones, delicious pastries and breads, ice cream, excellent coffee, and a front row seat to the parade on Route 66 ensure this will soon be a destination for travelers on the double six.
The rear portion of the historic facility that dates to the late teens with its weathered rough concrete exterior walls, hidden behind the Brunswick Hotel, has been converted into efficiency suites finished in a clean 1950’s style with ample use of black and white tile accented by red cabinets in the kitchenette.
They are simplistic but yet impressive and exude a relaxing atmosphere that should ensure they are comfortable. If you have business in Kingman, and need a home from home for a week or two, these secluded but centrally located apartments within walking distance of restaurants, micro breweries, and museums may be exactly what the doctor ordered.
I am pleased to announce that we (my dearest friend and I) have been commissioned to provide the photography for the apartments. Needless to say, they will blend automotive and Route 66 themes.
After walking Beale Street and some of Andy Devine Avenue (Route 66), discussing the history of various buildings, what might be salvageable and how they could be utilized after refurbishment we sat down for coffee and discussed his plans for the expansive Beale Celebrations building, formerly the JC Penney’s store at the corner of Fourth Street and Beale Street, site of the authors and artists exposition during the Route 66 International Festival in 2014.
As always, his plans were most exciting as they capture the historic essence of the are but in a subtle sort of way. I have no doubt that bringing them to fruition will dramatically transform the historic district.
Our meeting was followed by an unofficial appointment at the Powerhouse Visitor Center. When in the neighborhood I always stop by to ensure the copies of my books on sale at the gift shop are signed.
Before getting home for lunch, and tackling the lengthy list of “must dos” I had two small items to attend to. First, there was the need for a couple of photos to document National Old Trails Highway locations. Last but not least, I also needed a few shots for a project I am working on with Joe Sonderman.
Now, the rest of the afternoon will be spent with the nose to the grind stone. The reward, dinner with my dearest friend and a movie.
Sunday, well, suffice to say that when the day is done I will be one step closer to longer for another trip to the Netherlands.