Lonesome Dove, Handsome Bill and Alabaster, AL

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Mortgage and Lending with Benchmark Mortgage nmls 2143 NMLS # 198479

WELCOME TO LONESOME DOVE, ALABASTER, AL  POPULATION 1...I have already introduced you to my miracle Uncle, Handsome Bill Holcombe.  Handsome Bill was one of those born out of time.  He should have been a major player in the Wild Wild West, but that was not in the cards for him.                 Uncle Bill is a very artistic person with many talents.  He is a seasoned musician, and artist, comedian, entertainer, successful and educated business man , friend, brother, daddy, uncle and son.  He is loved by everyone that comes in contact with him and he gets to be a cowboy everyday!  Always a lover of antiques, old westerns, and the authentic wild west, a retirement hobby turned into a great ministry of sorts.  When Uncle Bill moved back home after living in Memphis, TN for 20 some odd years, he bought a home with some acreage and started putting his touch on it.  Today his home is opened by appointment to the public.  From the beginning of March to the middle of November he entertains in his small town, church groups, red hatters, senior citizens, cancer patients, children with disabilities and military heroes.

Sitting on his 10+ acres is an entire town from the wild west.  It is complete with a church that will seat about 75, organ, piano and pulpit  all of which were inspired by the church in the movie High Noon.  There is a general store, a saloon that serves nothing stronger than sasparillo, a barber shop, jail , grist mill, dodge house, Rose's Cantina, leather room and beautiful display of handtooled gun holsters  that are his pride and joy.  Everything was made and built by him with will and determination to share his passion of the "Good Old Days "  

Visit and you will laugh, kick back and remember a blast from the past.  The tours are free and you will also have a soft drink and some of the best pop corn ever made.  If you are ever in the Alabaster, AL area and would like some good clean fun and humor, stop by, he would love to see you.  He was healed from his cancer and his work for the Lord lives on.  Happy Trails!     

                                                                                                             

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Alabama Shelby County Alabaster
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Ambassador
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Ann Allen Hoover
RE/MAX Advantage South - Hoover, AL
CDPE SRES ASP e-PRO Realtor - Homes for Sale - AL

Valerie, I did not know all this about Uncle Bill and Lonesome Dove.....although I do know where this is.  Very neato!

Dec 02, 2008 06:31 AM #1
Rainmaker
527,430
Shirley Parks
Sands Realty 210-414-0966 - San Antonio, TX
Broker, 210-414-0966, San Antonio TX Homes

Hi Valerie, What a wonderful story.  If we are ever near Alabaster AL we will definitely take a tour and visit with Uncle Bill.  Thanks for sharing.

Dec 05, 2008 08:11 AM #2
Rainmaker
180,499
Cameron Wilson
Labrum Real Estate - Murrieta, CA
The Short Guy - Murrieta,Temecula,Menifee California

Handsome Bill sounds like a wonderful man dedicated to giving to others.

Dec 05, 2008 11:56 AM #3
Rainmaker
126,226
Debbie Hutchins
International, INT

Val!  This is sooooo cool!  How can I not know where this is?  This sounds like my kind of place.  I am so happy that Uncle Bill is doing well.  Sounds like he has touched the lives of many!

 

Debbie

Dec 05, 2008 02:42 PM #4
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Patricia Kennedy
Evers & Company Real Estate, Inc. - Washington, DC
For Your Home in the Capital

Valereie, that looks like a totally fun place!  Along with the church, is there a saloon?

Dec 06, 2008 10:21 PM #5
Anonymous
Valerie Springer, Benchmark Mortgage

Patricia:  Yes there is a saloon, just wouldn't be a wild west town without it! 

Dec 06, 2008 10:30 PM #6
Anonymous
Michelle Quick

So sorry to hear of Handsome Bill's passing. He was a great man and will be sorely missed by all who ever were blessed to meet him.  My prayers are with your family!

 

 

Apr 15, 2009 12:17 PM #7
Anonymous
Danny Ford

Valerie:

I knew Bill when he was a partner with Kimmons Wilson, in Memphis, TN. I was interested in buying the company, "Wilson Graphics." I was not able to complete the purchase, but I was totally captivated by Bill's personality, and his unique SOTHERN style.

When you walked into his office you were greeted by dozens of carrousel horses that he had personally decorated. If Bill welcomed you as a friend he would tell you that he was from LA. To Bill that meant he came from, "Lower Alabaster" AL. He told me about his experiences in Nashville with his daughters unexpected success at Opryland, and their trips to California. To me, Bill was a special man!

I learned today from Coach Larry Simmons that Bill has gone to be with the Lord. I feel honored that I knew Bill and that he considered me his friend. Thank you, Valerie for hosting this website.

God's bless, Danny Ford

251-605-0088

 

Mar 12, 2010 08:25 AM #8
Rainmaker
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Valerie Springer
Benchmark Mortgage nmls 2143 - Birmingham, AL
Home Loan Officer AL, FHA, VA, Conventional and Re

Danny, thank you for your kind words about Uncle Bill.  You are so right about his unique presence.  I am so glad you took the time to comment on my blog.

As with everything else, he faced the cancer head on with a wonderful attitude.  He never complained although sometimes he could hardly hold his head up.  He marched strong until the the Lord took him home on Easter Sunday 2009.  As you know, he had a daughter waiting to greet him along with both of his parents!  We miss him so terribly bad and our hearts hurt but we also know we will be reunited with him again one day in heaven. 

I am sure he is having a "rootin tootin" good time waiting on us.  He was truly blessed with so many gifts and talents, he was one of God's true miracles!

PS  I love Coach Larry Simmons and his wife Betty!

Mar 12, 2010 10:17 AM #9
Anonymous
Kay Cooper

Valerie, I found this site today when Mick told me that the sale was Saturday. I am so happy to say I knew Billy Jack Holcombe and what a wonderful man he was. I know it was hard losing him but you are right we will see him again in Heaven and he isn't suffering anymore. I loved him and admired him as a kid when Calvin - my step-father was teaching Wendy to learn to play the fiddle. We would come over and he was always so sweet to me and I played with Cindy, Muley and you and was excited everytime we came to get to see Mr. Billy Jack it was a great treat that I looked forward to and would complain when Wendy would come to the house instead of us going there. I know Wendy and him are having a rootin tootin time up in Heaven as we write this but I can't help but feel sad that the items are selling and that there will be no more Lonesome Dove. I thought when Cindy and Mick ask me to come a while back and I was sick there would be plenty of time to see it later. I had no clue it would be gone one day just like Mr. Billy Jack. It brings tears to my eyes but I know you all have to do what you have to do and life has to go on. I just wanted you to know I was thinking of you all and please tell Cindy and Muley I feel for them now and then for their loss.

 

 

Apr 06, 2010 07:35 PM #10
Anonymous
HTi Music

A memorial section to Wendy Holcombe is now being developed which will be placed on our new website, www.HTiMusic.com. The site is not presently complete, but several have already provided us with personal stories of Wendy; pictures of Wendy; etc.; and your help is needed and sought after, if you have anything you'd like to offer and if you desire to be a part of providing fans worldwide with an online dedication to Wendy. Please help if you can. Kindest regards, Harrison Tyner  

Apr 12, 2010 09:08 AM #11
Anonymous
Gerald & Kathy Smith
Hi Valerie, Our hearts sadden today learning of his passing. Yes he was a wonderful man. The first time we met him he treated us like old friends and welcomed us in.We stopped by out of curiosity to see what he was building. He took us throughout the town and then some. He showed us his leather works,his guns and told us the history of Lonesome Dove. He told us about Wendy and why he built the town. What a wonderful tribute! We also talked about his desire to build a chapel and what he envisioned it to be like. Being a designer myself, I told him I would be glad to draw him up a plan so that he could get a permit. I never got to come out and see it completed, but I m so glad to see the pictures and know that he was able to get it done. We will miss him as will all the people who's hearts he touched. Till we meet again Gerald & Kathy.
Jul 14, 2011 11:35 AM #13
Anonymous
Jim Johnson

I visited Bill one day a few years back.  As a country music disc jockey for many years, I had played the wax off of Wendy's records.  I was hosting Country Gold for the American Forces Network in Europe when she passed away and I always wanted to pay my respects.  Bill couldn't have been more friendly to me.  I felt like family as he took me on a personal tour of Lonsome Dove Ranch and talked about how he built it  and about Wendy and her life.  It was a very special afternoon as we walked and he talked about all his special memories, and about his love of creating great things of beauty in leather.  He was a master craftsman and spent much time showing me his many creations.  Before I left I asked if he would make a horse bridle for me.  He gave me a great big smile and said "Come on back anytime partner."  I didn't make it befoe he passed, but plan to stop by one day soon.   Hopefully I can sit in the Dodge House for awhile and just remember that very special day. 

Aug 23, 2011 04:23 PM #14
Anonymous
Mike Moore

I met Billy Jack many years ago when he lived in Fox Valley. I was aware of the Lonsome Dove Ranch but always thought that I would find the time to visit and see the wonderful western main street that he built on the ranch. I drove by today and realized that I had waited too long. The buildings are still there but I got the impression that they were no longer accessible to the public. A pity, I would loved to have walked down main street, entered the buildings and rememberd Billy and Scriptualdays gone by.

Oct 21, 2012 06:07 PM #16
Rainmaker
68,487
Valerie Springer
Benchmark Mortgage nmls 2143 - Birmingham, AL
Home Loan Officer AL, FHA, VA, Conventional and Re

Mike, thanks for taking a moment to comment.  We all have good intentions and often we let time run out on things we hoped to do.  You are right, Lonesome Dove is no longer open to the public.  The property is still owned by a family member but the grounds are now private.  A great legacy he left behind! 

Oct 22, 2012 01:03 PM #17
Rainmaker
68,487
Valerie Springer
Benchmark Mortgage nmls 2143 - Birmingham, AL
Home Loan Officer AL, FHA, VA, Conventional and Re

Lonesome Dove is no longer open to the public.   So sorry.

Jul 29, 2013 08:22 AM #20
Anonymous
Mary Ferguson

My grandfather, Joe Cox, helped Bill build these buildings. My mother, Peggy Cox, grew up with wendy and muley. I always wanted to take my daughters up to the ranch and let them see what their great granddaddy helped with. My mom still has a painting that Bill did of her horse. 

Aug 09, 2013 01:17 PM #21
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Gayle Rich-Boxman Fishhawk Lake Realtor (503)755-2905
Vernonia Realty - Vernonia, OR
"Your Gateway to the Lake" Birkenfeld Oregon

Valerie, this is such a great story! I know that this is from a long time ago, but I still think it's relevant.

You've been featured in today's Tuesday Travelogue!

                                         Travelers in the Rain!

     

Travelers in the Rain logo-Vineyard at Gales Creek Oregon-Gayle Rich-Boxman Copyrighted All Rights Reserved 2013

Nov 04, 2014 11:05 AM #22
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Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9663

Hi Valerie, I enjoyed reading about Uncle Bill and Lonesome Dove, sounds like a lot of fun and I will stop by if I am ever in the area.

 

Nov 04, 2014 09:06 PM #23
Anonymous
April

Hi! I am wanting to take my son to the ranch but I can't figure out if it's still open. I've been googling it for a while an can't find out much about it. I would love to take some pictures of my little boy here. Is it still open? Thank you!

Dec 01, 2014 05:21 PM #24
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Valerie Springer

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