Oak Cliff’s blues history: Neighborhood haunts of the world-famous Vaughan brothers

Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble were inducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in April. There is a statue of the legendary bluesman, who died in a helicopter crash in 1990, in the town where he first made his mark, Austin.

Here in their hometown, Oak Cliff, a monument to Stevie Ray and Jimmie Vaughan is in the works. The City of Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs has $74,000 to pay for artwork honoring the musical brothers. And they’ve identified a spot for it in Kiest Park, near the Vaughan brothers’ childhood home.

As is the problem with much of the city’s public art, there is no funding for maintenance. So Vaughan supporters, including Oak Cliff resident Kirby Warnock, are raising money for that. They need to raise $68,000 to maintain the proposed artwork for 20 years. Anyone can contribute at vaughanbrosart.com.

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Kiest Park is one of many Oak Cliff sites that were meaningful to the Vaughan brothers. We wanted to run down a few more of them.

The original 7-Eleven
345 S. Edgefield
The Vaughan brothers’ dad, “Big Jim,” worked at the original 7-Eleven store on Edgefield at 12th. This is where he met his wife to be, Martha Cook, after he returned home from World War II. Big Jim later was an asbestos worker; he died of asbestosis in 1986. Martha died in 2009.

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The family home
2557 Glenfield
Jim and Martha Vaughan bought this modest three-bedroom, one-bathroom house in the late 1950s, and she lived there for approximately 50 years. Stevie lived there until 1972, when he dropped out of school and moved to Austin. The current owners are aware of its significance.

Lenore Kirk Hall Elementary School
2120 Keats
This elementary school opened in 1955 when Stevie Ray Vaughan was 1 year old and was built for $560,000. He learned to play the guitar at age 7; classmates from L.K. Hall remember him, even in elementary school, as a kid who was obsessed with guitar.

L.V. Stockard Middle School
2300 S. Ravinia
Stevie Ray and Jimmie Vaughan attended L.V. Stockard Middle School and not Greiner, as people often assume. They did attend the old YMCA, which is now the Greiner Middle School gym. The Stevie Ray Vaughn Memorial Scholarship, established by the artist’s mother and friends in 1993, is given annually to a Greiner music student. This year, about $16,000 was awarded. Greiner, which has a performing arts academy, also has an auditorium named for Stevie Ray Vaughan.

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  • Smokey

    Ah ha…but look behind Stevie in the door way?

  • tx18wheels

    The birthplace of the Southland Corporation. Not only the first 7-11, but the first known convenience store in the world. Original wooden building was called Tot’em, built in 1927, and sold milk, eggs bread and ice blocks that were produced around the corner at Southland Ice House, which although vacant, still stands. Store name was changed during the mid-40’s to 7-11 when the business hours were extended to such.

  • Marshal Reinhart

    Original 7-11 was wood frame. Was it at this location?

  • OCTina

    Ha! Blues lovers – ever vigilant to keep this stuff straight!

  • tx18wheels

    You beat me to it!

  • OCTina

    that’s not Freddie King in the picture – It’s Muddy Waters..