CCHC Meeting Agenda and Minutes

 Chambers County Historical Commission April 22, 2017



  1. Meeting called to order by Chairman Sheryl Shaw; Invocation given by Ed Hillyer; Pledges of Allegiance led by Ed Hillyer and Kenneth Standley.

  2. Quorum met: members present: Sheryl Shaw, Bill Purser, Nell Purser, Jackie Payne, Jan Hasson, Kathy Franssen, Ed Hillyer, Donna Britt, John Britt, Gilbert Speights, Darla Willcox, Cathy Duhon, Kenneth Standley. Ex Officio: Michael Graves Guest: Sara Harrison; Absent: Bobby Scherer (speaking at DAT memorial).

  3. March minutes read: Jackie Payne was in attendance at the March meeting but her name was left off; Bill made motion to approve as amended to include Jackie; 2nd by Ed, all in favor. 

  4. Treasurer's report: no changes since last report.

  5. Chairman's Report: Discussion on souvenirs to be sold at Double Bayou Dance Hall Marker Dedication: Magnetized guitar-shaped bottle openers, made by PinCraft, manufactured in China, customized. Bill made motion to purchase 300 at price of $2 each or less, plus shipping.  Second by Donna, all in favor, motion carries.

  6. Discussion on souvenir Koozies for Double Bayou Dance hall marker dedication; Sheryl showed sample design. Donna suggests we put our names or CCHC on them. Jan made motion to buy 300 customized Koozies from Customlnk, priced at approx $1.75 each. Seconded by Gilbert. All in favor, motion carried.

  7. All agreed to provide the paper goods for the BBQ at the dedication as well as iced tea and cake. Will research prices and vote on costs at next meeting.

  8. For Smith Point marker dedication: Ed made motion   we purchase a cake for $150 or less; Seconded by Bill, all in favor, motion carries. Sheryl will order from The Cake Box in Mt Belvieu.

  9. Historian's Message: Bobby Scherer: absent due to speaking at DRT program. Sara volunteers to bring some historical photos of homes in Chambers County to next meeting. 

  10. Committee Reports:Monument: Sheryl no report; Publicity: Darla no report; Markers: John no report; Cemeteries Kenneth: no report. Sheryl stated we need to decide on a cemetery (or other property in need of protection) to preserve with fencing or cleaning as this is one of the requirements from State on annual report. Oral History: Gilbert - no report. F.Historical/Protected Properties:  Bill: no report.

  11. History Preservation: essay contest grading has been completed, Michael chose the winners for Barbers Hill North, and Donna for Barbers Hill South. Sheryl is reading Anahuac and will complete this week.

  12. Museum: Sheryl reports that she, Jackie, Cathy Duhon and Donna met at the museum and pushed all unwanted items to one wall to be declared  'surplus' by the county. Sheryl advised Valerie that we are now waiting on the county to remove those articles. Valerie says this takes about a month.

  13. OLD BUSINESS: Steve Kale's "Kevin Ladd" award will be presented to him at Commissioners Court Tuesday April 25 and all are invited.

  14. NEW BUSINESS: Postponed discussion on sponsoring a traveling exhibit from Humanities Texas or the State Historical Commission.

  15. Discussion and announcements.

  16. Adjourned to the Anahuac Cemetery to attend the Medallion ceremony hosted by the local Daughters of the Republic of Texas.



NOTICE is hereby given that a  MEETING of  the


was held on Saturday, the 3rd day of June, 2017, at 10 A.M.

at Double Bayou Park, 2814 Eagle Ferry Rd off Highway 562


  1. The meeting was called to order by Chair Sheryl Shaw, who gave the invocation and led the Pledges of Allegiance.

  2. Quorum was met, with members Shaw, Gilbert Speights, Donna and John Britt, Bob Scherer, Kathy Franssen, Darla Willcox, Bill Purser, Nell Northcutt Purser, and Kenneth Standley in attendance.

  3. ​Minutes from the April, 2017 meeting were read, and approved with a motion by Bill Purser, 2nd by Nell Purser. A Treasurer's report was not given

3.   Welcome Guests.

4. Chairman's Report: discussion was tabled on additional markers to be replaced.  The Old River-Winfree marker replacement has been 

     ordered, with payment previously voted upon. Examples of the Dance Hall souvenirs that will be for sale at $5.00 each during the 

     marker dedication were shown.

5.   No Historian's message was given.

8.  Committee Reports:

         A. Monument: Shaw: no report given

         B. Publlclty: Willcox: will send media information about the Dance Hall marker dedication.

         C. Markers: John Britt: Those present moved outside to determine placement of the marker. When facing the dance hall, the marker will be on

              the left side of the lawn, about even with the tree line, and off to the side of the "driveway" so it will be easily visible but not interfere with the

              property owner's ability to utilize the driveway or to access the property.  (After deciding where the marker will be installed, the meeting was

              moved to Tony's Restaurant due to impending rain.)


              Shaw reported that the Juneteenth Committee agreed that the Dance Hall souvenirs could be sold at the Juneteenth event on June 17 at

              White's Park.   As previously agreed, the commission will provide the paper goods for the reception following the Dance Hall marker

              dedication on June 24. Paper goods will include: platters, plastic cutlery, preferably wrapped in sets, paper towels, plastic cups for iced tea,

              "to go" containers, dessert plates for cake.  Iced tea will be mixed by Donny Coates, and two cakes will be ordered from The Cake Box in 

              Mont Belvieu.  A motion was made by John Britt that we purchase the above items to accommodate up to 300 guests, not to exceed $800.00.

              A second was made by Scherer, and the motion carried.

              Bill Purser will check with the County about providing ice. Shaw will order cakes and get the programs designed and printed by Sarah

              Cerrone, County Graphic Arts Director. Nell Purser will bring the table cloths that have the Historical Commission name on them. Willcox will

              staff the sourvenir table. Shaw will take care of the podium and flags, as well as water for the guests.  Valerie Jensen, County Librarian, will

              provide the library system's PA system.

              Confirmations on the event: Commissioner Larry George has reserved the building; Donny Coates will be there early

              Saturday to set up the barbecue.  He will sell plates for $10.00. Chuck Hill will set up his music system prior to 10:00 a.m. Saturday morning. 

              Shirley Mayes, Pat Lewis, Carlton Carrington and Jennifer Chavez have been contacted to unveil the marker; to date, Carrington and Chavez

              have confirmed. Caleb Moore, who did much of the research, has confirmed that he will attend; The Dance Hall Preservation group and Steve

              Sucher confirmed.


              John Britt will pursue a Texas Historical Marker for Victoria Walker, an African-American teacher in the Goose Creek area. Commissioner Rusty

              Senac wants the marker to be placed at the Victoria Walker Park, located where the Victoria Walker School once stood. Donna Britt will do the 

              research; Shaw volunteered to help. Shaw is doing the Prisoner of War marker application.

       D. Cemeteries: Standley is still assessing cemeteries for any that are in need of protection and fencing.

       E. Oral History: Speights: no report

       F. Historical/Protected Properties: Bill Purser: A suggestion has been made to provide automatic lighting and a timer for the 

           Chambers home.

       G. History Preservation: no report

       H. Museum Committee: Shaw will check with Jensen to see when the County can remove the surplus items that are currently

           housed in the museum, preventing further development.

9.   Old Business: none

10. New Business: Discussion on hosting a traveling exhibit was tabled.

11. Discussion/Announcements

12. Adjourn

Signed, Sheryl Shaw, CCHC Chairman

Chambers County Historical Commission February 25, 2017

  1. Meeting called to order by Chairman Sheryl Shaw; Invocation given by Ed Hillyer; Pledges of Allegiance led by Kenneth Standley.

  2. Quorum met: members present: Sheryl Shaw, Bill Purser, Nell Purser, Kathy Franssen, Ed Hillyer, Kenneth Standley, Bobby Scherer, Donna Britt, John Britt, Gilbert Speights; Ex Officio members present: Rev. Michael Graves. Guests: Judge Ken Wise and Sara Wise, Richard Schilling. Absent: Cathy, Darla, Jackie.

  3. January minutes read: John made motion to approve, 2nd by Bill, all in favor.

  4. Treasurer's report: Kenneth brought treasurer's report; filed for audit; he states our allotted budget for this year is $12,225; plus we have $17,689.74 in our 'permanent' account.

  5. Chairman's Report: Sheryl distributed a a packet to each member listing all committee members, chairman for each committee, and contact number, email for each. Gilbert gave a summary of the Black History month program hosted by the  library.

  6. Historian's Message: Bobby Scherer: Bobby outlined the "one L" versus "two L" Willcox families: with the exception of the "drugstore Wilcox's" all the  local Willcox families are related. Originally when the Wilcox family emigrated from England, the name was spelled with one "L"..... and prior to that, the name was possibly written as "Wilcoxson." Then when Capt Charles Willcox had a falling out with his relatives, he decided to separate himself from them by adding an "L." It was W.O. Willcox who donated the property for the first Chambers County courthouse in Anahuac.

  7. Committee Reports: the following volunteered to Chair

    1. Monument: Sheryl - no  report

    2. Publicity: Darla -  absent, no  report

    3. Markers: John: Smith Point Community Church marker dedication will be April 29 at 11 am. Sheryl reports Sara Cerrone in the graphic arts dept will gladly print the programs;  Michael states he has invited about 300 persons. Sheryl agreed to contact Sara about the possibility of using county chairs for guests. Ed made motion we purchase a cake for the church marker dedication at a cost of $125 or less; 2nd by John, all in favor. Sheryl reports she lined up a man to mow the  grass. in front of the Double Bayou Dance Hall, Terry LeBlanc, who will charge $60 initially then $50 any subsequent times requested. Kenneth states he will first contact Probation Dept to see if they can do it free. Donna  made motion that if Probation is not able to mow by end of March we hire Terry LeBlanc to mow it for $60. Bobby 2nd; all in favor, none opposed.

      4. Cemeteries: Kenneth -  no report

      5. Oral History: Gilbert - no report

      6. Historical/Protected Properties: Nell reminded the group that we will place our temporary marker at the home of early Anahuac

          physician Dr Morgan following March meeting. Also reports there seem to be Asian beetles in the Chambers home, and County

          will exterminate.

      7. History Preservation: Gilbert: Essay contest deadline approaching last part of March; Bill agreed to contact DQ again for

          possible donations  of ice cream to all participants.

      8. Museum: Sheryl: no report.


9. NEW BUSINESS: Guest speaker Judge Ken Wise presented a fascinating program highlighting General Chambers and his colorful

    political career. His podcast "Wise about Texas" covers many diverse topics on Texas history, including the information he shared

    with us, and is available online.

10. Discussion and announcements: none.

11. Adjourned: Tour of Chambers home and Dr Schilling office with our guests. We presented Judge and Mrs. Wise with a souvenir

    Chambers Home Christmas ornament.



NOTICE is hereby given that a  MEETING of  the


was held on Saturday, the 22nd day of July, 2017, at 10 A.M.

Chambers County Library, Anahuac

1. The meeting was called to order by Chair Sheryl Shaw.  The invocation was given by Ed Hillyer; the Pledges of Allegiance were led by Shaw.


2. Quorum was met, with members Shaw, Gilbert Speights, John Britt, Kathy Franssen, Darla Willcox, Bill Purser, Nell Northcutt Purser, Cathy Duhon, Jackie Payne, and Ed Hillyer attending; associate member Michael Graves was present, as well as ex-officio member Valerie Jensen, Chambers County Librarian.  Guests Sara Harrison, Brad Low, and Peggy Low attended as well; Harrison has now met the requirements for membership, and will submit her completed application for appointment by Commissioners' Court.


3. Minutes from the June, 2017 meeting were read, with a motion to approve by B. Purser, 2nd by Britt; motion passed.


4. The Treasurer's report was presented by Jensen. There are three different "accounts" for the Historical Commission: The general fund account from the County has a current balance of $1100.00; the account from the Hotel-Motel Tax had purchases of $4,909.00 (the marker events, etc.) with a balance of $7,064.66 remaining; and the 0840 account, which is the Certificate of Deposit from donations, has a current balance of $17,716.00.


5. Chair report: Shaw congratulated the group on the highly successful marker dedication events at Smith Point and Double Bayou. A motion was made by Hillyer to purchase additional thank you cards, and with a 2nd by Britt, the motion passed. Nell Purser also proposed designing some digital letterhead for use in correspondence, and the group concurred. Britt suggested that October would be a good date to start requests for this year's Kevin Ladd Award nominations.


6. Jensen demonstrated the Montage software program. This software was purchased by the library system to digitize historical records and photographs.  It is searchable by name. The program is accessible by the public through the library system's website, and pulls up all references associated with any name entered in the search box. Photographs, books, historical records, and oral interviews are included. Everyone agreed that the program is very impressive. The cost of the program is $3,395.00 per year. The library system budget will include money for the program in the future, but the Historical Commission is asked to cover the fee for the current year. A motion was made by Bill Purser that Historical Commission funds be used to pay the $3,395.00 fee this year, with the understanding that the money will be transferred from the "per precinct" (i.e., the Hotel-Motel Tax) money into the general fund account to offset the cost. With a 2nd by Speights, the motion passed.


Jensen also demonstrated the website ( set up by A. Lynette Parsons, who is employed using Historical Commission funds. She is also the one digitizing the information for the Montage software. Historical Commission members will soon need to take over the website, so they will need to decide who will do this so they can be trained and granted access for the management of the website.

7. Historian's message: no report.

8. Committee reports: 

     A. Monuments: Shaw reported that a county-wide plan to promote our history, and to attract tourists with the theme, "Welcome to 

         Chambers County: Where You Can Stand in the Footsteps of History" was presented to the County Budget Committee through

         Jensen. A series of photographs were shared with the budget committee as an outline on suggested historical tourist attractions for

         all parts of the county.  


         The first project would be a life-sized bronze monument in Fort Anahuac Park to honor William B. Travis

         and the three Taylor brothers from Anahuac who died at the Alamo. Each historical site would feature a way the visitor could "stand          in the footsteps of history." Estimates for the bronze statue alone would be about $140,000.00.  Oilfield workers, longhorn cattle              ranchers, pirates, and Native Americans would be the subjects of subsequent bronze monuments.  

         Shaw reported that she also suggested that the County consider construction of a museum/visitor center to be connected to the

         rear of the American Legion Hall.

     B. Publicity: Willcox reported that $1,435.00 was grossed from the sale of the Dance Hall koozies and magnets. Items remaining      

         included 189 koozies and 102 magnets. Jensen confirmed that the money was deposited into the 0840 account.

     C. Markers: Britt reported that he and Donna Britt are working on the historical marker for African-American school teacher Victoria

         Walker, and the early segregated school that was named for her. A park now stands where the school used to be. Plans are 

         underway to renovate the park. Commissioner Rusty Senac and Baytown Mayor Stephen DonCarlos are spearheading a donation

         drive and hope that the marker could be installed as part of the new park dedication ceremony.

         Shaw plans to submit the Prisoner of War Camp marker application this fall as well.


         Franssen inquired about the status of the Old River-Winfree marker replacement. Jensen stated that payment has been made; 

         Kathy would like to have the re-dedication done on Founders' Day in October, if the marker can be delivered by then. The group


     D. Cemeteries: Britt reported that Randy Busch, a descendant of those buried at the Morgan/Busch Cemetery off Highway 146, is 

         assessing the condition of that cemetery, is preparing to renovate the grounds and to do some repairs. Donna Britt is      

         accompanying him and will let the commission know if there is anything the commission can do to help (i.e., with fencing).  It has

         been said that there were two German POWs buried there until the end of World War II, when the bodies were exhumed and 

         returned to their homeland.

         Graves reported that Kenneth Standley is researching a possible abandoned cemetery off Highway 562. There is a piece of property

         there that is not on the tax rolls, and therefore likely that it had been designated as a cemetery at one time.  Duhon reported that

         another cemetery that the commission might want to assess is on private property off Highway 563 called the Baxter Brown 

         Cemetery. Shaw stated that she would like to have a notebook of all the major and minor cemeteries in the county, with photos    

         and notations on their conditions.  Jensen noted that there is a partial list on the Montage software, and Graves said there was a

         map in the old museum at one time that had a red dot indicating the locations of all the cemeteries.

     E. Oral History: Shaw reminded the group that 2018 is the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Ike, and that the commission should capture

         and collect Ike photographs and interviews before these memories are too dim or destroyed.  Possibly a display or exhibit for the

         public could be arranged.

     F. Historical/Protected Properties: Bill Purser stated that a decision is awaiting Donna Britt's report on the Busch Cemetery before

         deciding to take on Dr. Schilling's office as our restoration project. It will soon need to be repainted or touched up; the bricks on

         the path and the steps need to be repaired now, however, for safety reasons.  The roof leak has already been repaired.

     G. History Preservation: Speights reported that he would like to change the essay contest format, and to give students a choice to 

         submit an essay or a short video. The student could assume the personality of an historical character, and tell about that life in the

         first person. Guidelines for videos would need to require sources and documentation in some way.

     H. Museum: Jensen stated that she has requested that surplus items be removed from the museum, and will inform us when they are


9. Old Business: none.

10.New Business: 

     A. A decision was made to continue participation in GatorFest, and to invite the same reenactors, adding some possible bagpipers.

         The GatorFest organization has given $500.00 to the commission, so an additional $400.00 is need for the total of $900.00 for the

         three reenactor troups. Speights made a motion to add $400.00 to the $500.00 and to pay each group $300.00; with a 2nd by

         Britt, the motion passed.  The three troops include the Texas Navy, Hood's Brigade, and the Atakapa Ishak Nation.

     B. Payne made a motion that up to $150.00 be spent on printing photos of past Historical Commission events for a scrapbook; with a

         2nd by Bill Purser, the motion passed.  Shaw will order the photos.

     C. A decision was made to host a reception at the County Courthouse to honor the Courthouse's 80th birthday, and to do this in 

         September on a Tuesday Commissioners' Court session.  Hillyer made a motion to spend $200 on cake, punch, and paper plates; 

         with a 2nd by Nell Purser, the motion passed. September 26 was chosen as the target date for the reception.

     D. Decisions were tabled on the following:

         Replacement of markers

         Sponsorship of the Alabama-Coushatta Tribe Dancers

         Donations for publication expenses of Steven Kole's book

     E. Breakfast meeting: A decision was made to try to have a commission meeting in October or November in Liberty. Following the 

         meal, a tour of the Price Daniel mansion and the historical homes on the property of the Sam Houston Regional Library would take

         place. Bill Purser moved that about $12 per person be spent on the breakfast; with a 2nd by Payne, the motion passed. Shaw will

         contact the Library for a date; everyone will consider possible breakfast places and share findings in emails.

Guests Peggy and Brad Low announced that they participate in "way marking," which is similar to geo-caching. They "tag" locations of 

historical markers and sites.  All agreed that this sounded like something the commission would be excited to pursue.

The meeting was then adjourned.



                    Chambers County Library System Administrative Offices