I’ve lost track of how many times I’ve written about Bob Berryman, the man-about-town perhaps best known for being the owner and operator of the Silver Slipper nightclub, just outside of town on Macon Road.
In the 1930s, Berryman also built an impressive tourist court complex on Highway 61 South. Constructed of gleaming white concrete in an adobe style, it was hard to resist for weary travelers coming into Memphis from Mississippi. And it was so nice-looking that it was featured in an ad for Atlas White Portland Cement, which ran in a 1937 issue of The Architectural Forum.
Berryman’s Tourist Court did indeed look pretty spiffy for many years. But over time, that portion of Highway 61 became more and more commercial/industrial, and families were reluctant to stay there. In later years, painted in shades of brown and called the Adobe Village, the old tourist court definitely developed a rather questionable reputation. Several years ago, when it was clearly in a state of decline, I drove into the complex to take some pictures. I was only able to photograph two or three of the empty buildings before a rather large and very angry man chased me off the property, clearly not recognizing me as a Lauderdale.
It doesn’t matter. Plenty of photos exist of the place, which was demolished in the late 1990s. Today, the site is the home of It’s All Good auto sales.