25. Zarsky's Lumber Company
Zarsky's Lumber Company #25 & #25A on the map, this was at corner of Port Avenue & Lipan, backed up to Missouri Pacific railroad tracks. They utilized a lot of railroad boxcars for their lumber. Even across tracks there was almost along all of Mestina tons of lumber, stacked as high as Cokes in Coca Cola across Leopard, I mean 15 feet or so high. The forklifts constantly coming & going here so not really good area for kids. But being kids we would pick up 2 x 4s discarded or broken here. Take home, and get a mess of Coca Cola, Sprite and other bottle caps and nail them to board. Then put metal wheels on bottom, another board up front with another smaller board up top, there you have poor kids scooter to ride up and down street. Can't tell you how many of those we made. But Zarsky's was a endless supply of lumber.
One day a guy asked us what we were doing with the boards we were ferrying off between train tracks. I told him making scooters. He thought that was neat and said he would instruct some of the guys to put 'special boards' out for us, away from the yard itself. So not even more kids in the hood had scooters and mini skateboards. We did buy some lumber there after hurricane Celia, (Aug 3rd, 1970) place was packed, and even though Zarskys was pretty beat up building wise, they had truckloads and trainloads of wood coming in from all over country to sell. So there, you have quick side trip away from Leopard on Port Avenue. Circa 1966-70. Above the Lew Williams Chevrolet complex you can clearly see Zarsky's top center of photo, Lipan is the intersection upper right. This neat photo shows my stomping grounds & why I am dedicated to trying to preserve it's history. Besides Zarskys, to the left of it Monita's Tortilla Factory, left of it the striped paint & body shop of Carl Kuhen's, left of that the no name car lot. Behind them extreme top of photo is Missouri Pacific rail yard with some tankers, loads of lumber & a chemical storage bin