Monday, August 10, 2009

The Shamrock

My Granddaddy started in the hotel and restaurant supply business in Houston back in the early twenties. More than moderately successful, he partnered with a man by the name of Frank Henshaw, they later opened restaurant equipment and supply houses around the state of Texas, based out of Southern Hotel Supply Co. Granddaddy's line of work, successes, and his effusive personality gave he and Grandma membership into what was then Houston's "Cafe Society".

By 1949, when Glenn McCarthy's Shamrock Hotel had it's grand opening he had been gone from Houston for maybe a year and a half; but, he wasn't so removed that I assume him to still be part of the "crowd" that attended the Hotel's (in)famous Grand Opening. Long after he passed and going thru his "treasure box" I came across a napkin from the Shamrock. Wish I'd have asked him more questions about those times. I do know he and Grandmother also frequented the Balinese Room in Galveston run by the Maceo's back in the day.

What does all this mean? Number two of my favorite films is Giant. I suppose because of the connection with Grandma and Grandpa and their early years. I imagine they knew more than a few of the characters depicted in the movie. Family legend even says Grandma used to play bridge with the sister of Howard Hughes. When I watch the movie it seems to return them closer to me. Gone more than 35 years now, I still miss them.


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