In 1962, the original Artesian Hotel located in Sulphur Oklahoma, burned to the ground. This fine old lady was originally opened in 1906, and had courted one US President, and lot of famous people.
In 1963, Gene Feliciano, originally of San Francisco California; but, living in Davis Oklahoma at the time, submitted the winning bid for cleaning up the burned hotel site, and building a new motor hotel in its place.
After high school graduation in 1963, I went to work for Uncle Gene as a laborer. We set up a brick yard east of Davis. We hauled the bricks to the Davis yard. Gene hired various people to clean and stack the bricks on a daily basis.
To clean a brick, one would use a hatchet to knock off the old mortar, and then stack the bricks. One received a penny a brick for cleaning and stacking the bricks. When one was through with the stacking, the bricks would be stacked uniformly, and each stack would contain one thousand bricks. Paid $10 a day.
I cleaned many, many bricks. Another guy and I hauled bricks about every other day to home sites where new homes were being built in the Davis and Sulphur areas.
In that same summer of 1963, Gene won the bid to tear down the old Ardmore Sanitorium, and clean off the site. We set up another brick yard out east of Ardmore at the end of east main street. We also hauled used bricks to home sites in the Ardmore area. In those days, a new brick cost about 3 to 4 cents; whereas, a used brick was worth around 6 to 7 cents a brick.
There are several homes in the Davis, Sulphur, and Ardmore Oklahoma areas built with the bricks from the original Artesian Hotel, and the Ardmore Sanitorium