We were passing right by Cisco on our way to Baird, so we decided to get off I-20 and see what was there. There were several interesting items already waymarked for us to visit like the First National Bank (now a Car Quest Parts House) which was robbed by Santa Claus on 12/23/1927. A.C. Greene wrote a book that tells the story of how “Santa Claus” attempted to rob the Bank. So we stopped by Car Quest and there is a historical marker near the front door.
Next we visited the Mobley Hotel where Conrad Hilton’s hotel empire began. A.J. Olsen Construction built the Mobley Hotel in 1916 for Henry Mobley. Conrad Hilton purchased the hotel in 1919, during the time it catered to the participants of the Ranger oil field boom in west central Texas. The building is significant for being the first Hilton Hotel even though it never actually bore the Hilton name. The nearby town of Abilene got that honor when Conrad Hilton bought its Windsor Hotel and renamed it.
The Mobley Hotel is now the home of the Cisco Chamber of Commerce and it is also a Community Center. Nearby is a gorgeous clock. It had been formerly mounted on the corner of the bank building (the one that got robbed). It has a Frank-Lloyd-Wright-ish Prairie-style design, and probably dated somewhere between 1910s-1920s.
Further back is playground with the Union Pacific caboose number 25223. The rail line through Cisco was originally the Texas & Pacific, which was bought out by the Missouri Pacific in 1928. In 1980 Union Pacific bought out the Missouri Pacific. The caboose is locked but you can climb the steps and peek inside.
Another waymarking category is “Victorian Homes” and Cisco has a lovely one at Sixth Street and Avenue I. This is a private residence and not open for tours.
Right next door is the Log Cabin Guest Haus. This is a bed and breakfast. This historic two story cabin from the 1840’s was moved to Cisco from Lancaster County, Pennsylvania and lovingly restored and furnished with period antiques.
Then there is the beautiful stone arch made of local sandstone at the entry to Cisco’s historic Oakwood Cemetery.
Those were all existing waymarks, but seeing all the beautiful churches I had to stop and take pictures so I could add waymarks for them.
The city has lots of murals which I have not as yet waymarked. To waymark they require you to furnish the artist’s name, and none of these murals were signed.
We saw other interesting places that might fit into an architectural design style like “Art Deco” or “Frieze Art”, but since I’m not an expert on this I won’t be waymarking these buildings.
Cisco is an interesting place to visit. Well worth a detour off of I-20.