Red Dog

The Watson Motel



Earlier this month, I visited Louisiana for the first time since 2012. I stayed in New Orleans most of the time, but rented a car to come up to Baton Rouge for the day to explore for a new ABR post. 

I've covered the sad-sack motels of Airline Highway before, but I missed the Watson Motel for two reasons: it's pretty far out in the southern direction I rarely ventured, and it's almost totally overgrown, so if you're not looking for it, it's very easy to miss. 

What type of establishment was the Watson Motel and its attached bar? It closed before the Information Superhighway really got going, so very little information is available online. 

But there is this:

In 2010, "Papercutninja" remembered it thusly on  

I used to live in Pecan Creek across from the State Fair Grounds. I used to ride my bike down the street that backs up to motel on my way to work at that McDonald's. I vividly remember seeing what looked like rental cars there parked out by the rooms. There is no chance that there was not prostitution going on there. I also remember a rumour about there being some kind of store or bar there that only sold single beers and half pints of hooch. It was allegedly called "Steve's" and it was supposedly a hang out for people that went to Woodlawn but who knows. Kids tend to spread shite around just to do so.

Having seen the place, I wholeheartedly believe this. (The first part would be a safe guess anyway, as the Watson was a motel located smack in the prostitution corridor between BR/New Orleans.) 

Shall we?

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Beauty School Dropout

D-Jay's School of Beauty is one of the few businesses featured here on ABR that still exists elsewhere, such as Mitiello's, Shell, and Winn-Dixie. They even have a website on the Internets. However, the beauty school dropped out of this particular Government Street Location.


Judging by this sign, their move must have happened around the time of laser discs.


(To the sellers/leasers: Here's a tip I learned from HGTV existing: this property might move faster if you clear out the burned-up garbage from the front area. Just a thought.)

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A-Ace Insurance/ Able Insurance

One of the exciting aspects of urban exploration is that often, places that initially looked dull can hold a surprise or two. Take this boring old insurance agency. They took the lame Yellow Pages alphabetical tactic of starting the business name with a bunch of A's. Like, way to have confidence in your services, Ace.


Only they couldn't decide which "A" name they wanted. This one doesn't exactly instill more confidence in their services.



Eh, they're just able. No wonder they went out of business. But I soon learned this place hasn't been completely abandoned...

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Militello's Shoe Repair

I moved to Baton Rouge less than two weeks ago and noticed a number of intriguing abandoned buildings. There are Deco, midcentury, and timeless (aka, I don't know what style to label them) creepy buildings in varying states of decay, all begging for documentation. My first subject is the '60s/'70s wonder Militello's Shoe Repair, located on Government Street near the intersection of Acadian, resplendant in wood paneling. (Click photos to enlarge)



Don't miss the lone shoe...I would totally wear those if there were two. I also want the chairs.



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