|City/Town: • Winslow|
|Location Class: • Hotel/Motel|
|Built: • 1937 | Abandoned: • 2010|
|Status: • Abandoned • For Sale|
|Photojournalist: • Anna Gray|
Burn Gables History
Burns Gables, originally built by the Burns family in 1937, was originally an extravagant stone building featuring a restaurant, cabins with a gorgeous view, and a great place for memories. Unfortunately, this beautiful building burnt in 1952. Soon after, the Burns built a smaller, two story stone building to replace the old structure. Business continued until about the early 2000’s when the new interstate led to significant loss of traffic and business.
Mt. Gayler History
Edward A. Bellis Sr., his wife Stella Bellis and their son Ed Jr. came to the mountain from Ft. Worth, Texas after they lost everything in the crash of 1929. Edward bought five acres from R.D. Gayler, who had homesteaded the mountaintop south of Winslow so many years earlier. The Bellis family lived in the back of a pickup truck and a tent while they built the rock buildings and opened businesses that would grace the mountain for more than 60 years. They named the establishment after the Gaylers, who had been there since the mid 1800s.
After they came to Arkansas, Edward Sr., who was by trade a bookkeeper, laid the rocks following the plans of his wife Stella until a two-story service station, a small house behind the gift shop, an ice house, and rocked-up spaces for a multitude of flowers were completed. Over the service station was an apartment in which their son Ed Jr. would live with his wife Sue Steward. Ed Jr. and Sue had four daughters and a son they named Edward III. One of their daughters, Ruby Jo Bellis, was the only descendant who wanted the Mt. Gayler.
After I-540 was finished, the heavy traffic moved west leaving the mountainous and often dangerous Highway 71 deserted. Ed Jr., spoke in favor of that highway, stating, “It’ll ruin our business, but we can’t stand in the way of progress.”
As of 2010, Burns Gables and the tower remains closed and in need of repair.
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