A month ago I got an email from Pricilla Bledsaw of Decatur, Illinois about the Boot’s Motel in Carthage. She and her sister had put in a bid to buy the motel and fix it up.
The Boot’s had gone the way of many of the best motels that somehow manage to survive along Route 66: It housed people, who live on the margins, by the month.
The Boot’s is a classic streamline moderne building on the lines of the, now departed Coral Courts in St. Louis. I do hope the sisters remove the faux-gable roof and keep the nice black glass insets on the rounded corners of the office. The Boots had all the modern amenities–tile showers, radiant heat in the floor, air conditioning, and garages.
In 1981, when I made this photograph, Rachel Asplin was maintaining the neatly trimmed trees and hedges between the garages that was so in keeping with the architecture of the building. The entrances must have been from the garages.
To start the sisters will rent the rooms in the rear for office space and use their earnings to rehab the rest for travelers. The Boot’s is a natural for a Route 66 Bed and Breakfast.
The only drawback is Carthage is off the beaten track for all but the most devoted 66 travelers, but from the daily friend requests I get on my Facebook page, there are plenty of them out there.
I wish the Pricilla and her sister good luck.