Monty’s in Olmos Park was more teen hangout than drugstore

Sadye Matula

What can you explain to me about Montgomery Drug? It was at the corner of Olmos (Generate) and McCullough (Avenue). I recognize that numerous a long time ago it had a taking pictures assortment and other diversions for the young set and was extra open than Laurel Heights Pharmacy. The […]

What can you explain to me about Montgomery Drug? It was at the corner of Olmos (Generate) and McCullough (Avenue). I recognize that numerous a long time ago it had a taking pictures assortment and other diversions for the young set and was extra open than Laurel Heights Pharmacy.

The two in close proximity to North Aspect drugstores, the two established in the early 20th century, experienced distinctive photos.

Laurel Heights was the elder of the two, started in 1910 at Mistletoe Avenue and Howard Avenue — when it was not a positive matter that there would be sufficient suburban prospects — and relocating in 1923 to the function-developed Gillmore Developing at Mistletoe and Main Avenue. Imagine of this drugstore as a Gibson Female illustration, a appropriate, indoor surroundings with a marble-countered soda fountain. Women of leisure frequented for interesting drinks mother and father could ply their small children with Frozen Joys (chocolate-dipped cones) while they shopped for toiletries or sundries and previous chemistry professor L.D. Gilmore, pharmacist and proprietor, stuffed their prescriptions. The pharmacy also added “fine foods” (a lot of salads) and air conditioning that drew consumers inside and saved them there to bask in the “comfortable, healthful atmospheric disorders.”

Montgomery’s drugstore came along in the Roaring ’20s, and rapidly developed a individuality to match. It was a new company in a new position to do business enterprise. In 1926, former coverage agent Dee Montgomery purchased a piece of house at McCullough Avenue and Robinson Highway (later on an extension of Olmos Push) that was cleared for developing by the completion of the flood-retaining Olmos Dam. At 3201 McCullough Ave., he developed a two-tale stone, tile and stucco making — enterprise on the floor ground, apartments on top rated and, as it turned out, partying on the side. Feel of this drugstore as a John Held flapper cartoon, a put for young people to allow free.

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With his spouse, Maybelle Stanfield, an English instructor at Brackenridge Large College, Montgomery opened his self-named store in 1927 “on the really edge of the made location,” as pointed out in a historical post in the San Antonio Light, March 29, 1959, and soon turned it into a magnet for youthful San Antonians who would drive “out to the sticks” soon after the lodge roof dances at the Gunter and the St. Anthony to meet and greet.

Teens from just about every San Antonio higher college, general public and non-public, pulled up to the drive-in at Monty’s, as they called it, to take pleasure in each other’s business around steak sandwiches and frozen milkshakes. There was a dance pavilion, and there were fistfights — over cars and trucks and girls — and a quick vogue for egg fights, waged by “two jellybean armies” of goofy young adult males.

Montgomery’s drugstore did not market much it did not have to. “No regular generate-in spot in town obtained larger participate in,” stated the Light-weight, Jan. 28, 1962.

Hundreds confirmed up on Friday and Saturday evenings in the course of Monty’s 1930s heyday, contacting out for their most loved carhop waiters, who went by nicknames — Pharoah, Rabbit, Rowboat and Showboat. From time to time they’d toss in a minimal tune and dance to coax dime tips from youthful diners. In the qualifications, the future wave of shoppers honked their horns to encourage parked drivers to free of charge up a place. At minimum when, little ones enable armadillos unfastened in the retailer.

Right after the Montgomerys’ to start with 12 months at 3201 McCullough Ave., Maybelle quit teaching to get the job done at the shop comprehensive time — as cashier, gross sales clerk and purchaser. Her expertise, which involved levels from the College of Texas and Columbia University Lecturers School, almost certainly contributed to the store’s attraction.

The pair “made innumerable long lasting friendships with the kids who frequented Monty’s,” the 1962 Mild story mentioned, quoting Mrs. Montgomery: “They would convey to us their issues, their desires, their designs for relationship. Occasionally when a pair would turn into engaged, we would be the initially to hear.”

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Dee retired in 1945 the retail store stayed open briefly below his wife’s administration but had shed some of its luster all through the gas-rationing a long time of Entire world War II and shut forever.

When Dee died at 70 of a coronary heart assault, his obituary in the Light, Feb. 22, 1957, acknowledged him as “one of the 1st developers of enterprise assets in Olmos Park.” Maybelle lived to be 110, passing away at property Sept. 22, 2006.

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