Years of Dreaming

“Years of dreaming…will be climaxed Friday night with the staging of the first event in the city’s new, luxurious auditorium.”
Lubbock Avalanche-Journal
March 25, 1956

“People of Lubbock voted by a narrow margin to ultimately have the Lubbock Municipal Auditorium and Coliseum demolished.”
Lubbock Avalanche-Journal
May 6, 2018

And, like that, on a 526-vote margin, we voted to destroy two of our most recognizable buildings – buildings that held our collective memories of basketball games, rodeos, symphonies, circuses, monster truck pulls, pancake breakfasts, concerts, graduations, and so many other events, all of which helped define our community. And ourselves.

Not one thing in any of these photos exists any more. What will happen to our memories, now that these buildings are gone? Will they get stronger? Become larger than life? Become so faint we almost doubt the circus or the symphony ever even happened?

Where did our years of dreaming go?


Arcade – photographed June 12, 2018


Let’s do this – photographed June 12, 2018


First Aid Room – photographed June 12, 2018


Entry – photographed June 12, 2018


Arcade – photographed June 21, 2018


Concrete Windows – photographed June 21, 2018


Out of Order – photographed July 11, 2018


Additional Storage – photographed July 17, 2018


Rainy Day Doors – photographed August 18, 2018


Grid with lights and curtains – photographed September 10, 2018


Mirror, mirror – photographed September 10, 2018


House lights had dimmed – photographed September 10, 2018


Racks, room 201 – photographed September 13, 2018


Cleanliness – photographed September 13, 2018


At the lowest point – photographed September 17, 2018


Pipe Shadow – photographed September 18, 2018


Crow’s Nest View – photographed September 18, 2018


Stairs – photographed September 18, 2018


Stage – photographed September 24, 2018


Two kinds of sinks – photographed September 25, 2018


Chair and music stand – photographed September 26, 2018


Velvet, worn away – photographed September 26, 2018


Above it all – photographed September 26, 2018


Front of House – photographed November 11, 2018


Never to be repeated – photographed December 8, 2018


After the last rodeo – photographed April 7, 2019


You can see it all from here – photographed April 7, 2019


Marked for death – photographed April 27, 2019


Matched my mood – photographed May 3, 2019


Dome Down – photographed May 26, 2019

Posted on August 1, 2019, in Photography and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. Brilliantly documented, Melinda!

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  2. Which is why we are photographers!

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  3. You really have outdone yourself MGH. Well deserved.

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  4. Wow! Thank you my friend for giving us a moment in time of a place that is no more.

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  5. So many many memories of my life and times in the old lady..To look back on my times working there..First started to work when I was about 10 years old sweeping the basketball floor before and at halftime at the Texas Tech basketball games..Making of my first Millions..Continue to working all during going to school from 10 years old all the way through until I married and moved away at 30 years old..Cleaning up after the many shows that came in to the Auditorium or Coliseum..Working with many great people Doyle Griffin -Clyde Lee-Bob Campbell ( my dad)-James(Duck)Drake -Ronald House- David Sears-Randy Mankins -Beverly Sharp-Dottie Townsend-Freddy Chavez-many more..Building the stages at the Coliseum and the Civic Center what fun that was..Bringing in the many many different shows working as stage hand setting up the shows then working the spot lights or sound board was fun and hard work..ZZ Top – Randy Millsap met my wonderful wife at that show – Elvis – Holiday on Ice – Ringing Brothers Circus – 1978 President Ford on top of the boards cover dirty at the ABC Rodeo – KIZZ – Broadway show Tommy and Hair – Texas Tech Basketball – Globe Trotters – Pancake Suppers much much more..Question to all you that worked there DID ANYONE GET TO SEE THE GHOST IN THE COLISEUM??It was a lady dressed in the old times long dress long sleeves and bonnet you all can laugh at me and you will say I was drunk or stone out of my head..But I know what I saw and it happens 3 different times..The place was empty and most of the crew people had gone home for the night I was turning off the lights to go home myself..When I saw the ghost she you could tell it was a lady by the shape of her body..She was about 5 feet from me and it was cooler around me and her..She was about 5 ft tall just standing there in front of me..I moved back some to get away and so did she and no I was not scared it happened 3 different times..In a period of 4 years she came back to the same place and around the same times..Spooky and really cool at the same time..Ok I will stop going on and on but just to many many memories to let go of..To all the great people who also followed in my footsteps after I had gone I say to you all..TURN OFF THE LIGHTS ON THE LAST CURTIN CALL IT WAS A GREAT RUN AND THE FUN IS DONE..GOOD NIGHT TO YOU ALL..

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    • Gary – thank you so much for sharing your memories. When I was working on the project, I heard rumors of the ghost, but never encountered her myself. I did get nervous a few times from the sounds coming from the boiler room when I was up there late and night and was (I hoped!) the only person in the building….

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