Thursday, April 30, 2015

The Chicken Ranch is no more

Pastel and Colored Pencil on paper
16 x 20

Anyone who has lived in Texas for any period of time knows the story of the Chicken Ranch, an illegal but tolerated brothel that existed just outside the city limits of La Grange, Texas from 1907 until Marvin Zindler  shut it down in 1973.  Some references record it as the longest running continually operating house of prostitution in the history of the World's Oldest Profession.  Who knows and who keeps track of such information?  Local ranchers and Freshman in the Corps of Cadets at Texas A&M University were sorry to see it go at any rate.  Artifacts from the Chicken Ranch can still be found on ebay, and the place was the inspiration for the Broadway musical The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, as well as a song by ZZ Top.  You don't want to know how the place got its name.

I have no idea what the Chicken Ranch General Store has to do with the now extinct brothel, but the sign got my attention.  The store is located on Washington in La Grange and is near the Railroad tracks but the last time I was in La Grange, the owners had painted over the mural with white paint. 

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