National Trust for Historic Preservation Awards the Linden Heritage Foundation a Preservation Grant under the Hart Family Fund for Small Towns

The Linden Heritage Foundation was recently allocated a $9,750.00 grant by the National Trust for Historic Preservation from the Hart Family Fund for Small Towns. These grant funds will be used to support the Old Linden Firehouse Rescue Project by funding Plans and Specifications.

The Rescue Plan for the Old Firehouse is to . . .
. . . locate historic photos,
. . . restore the building to the U.S. Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for historic preservation,
. . . finalize the site’s listing on the National Register of Historic Places,
. . . give the building a commercial user that will further Linden revitalization goals, and
. . . create a heritage asset out of the present eyesore on this important block of downtown Linden.

“Organizations like the Linden Heritage Foundation, help to ensure that communities and towns all across America retain their unique sense of place,” said Stephanie Meeks, president of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. “We are honored to provide a grant to the Linden Heritage Foundation which will use the funds to help preserve an important piece of our shared national heritage.”

For more information on National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Preservation Fund grants, visit:

About Linden Heritage Foundation visit:

About the National Trust for Historic Preservation

The National Trust for Historic Preservation is a privately-funded nonprofit organization that works to save America’s historic places to enrich our future

Take the time to visit their website and consider becoming a member.  Individual membership begins at $20.00

What’s in Your Album?

The Old Linden Firehouse Project needs photos of any part of this building taken between 1939 and 1965.  

If you have such a photo, even one that shows only a piece of the building, please submit and collect up to a $750.00 reward!

Photos from the Rush Street facade, on the south, are prized since it’s the “front” of the building.  Research indicates that originally, the Old Linden Firehouse had just a single fire truck door so the pair of doors seen here may not appear on older photos.

Be sure to carefully check the background of your old photos – people often posed with some part of a historic building behind them.  Such a photo will also count for this reward!

Photos submitted will be evaluated by a Committee of the Linden Heritage Foundation, reward levels determined, and photos returned  with credit given for use.  All photos of the Old Linden Firehouse pre-1965 receive prize $.

Thank you for helping us get this word out.

Linden Heritage Foundation

512.799.6294-Joe; 903.490.6821-Sue

Please respond no later than August 31, 2017

“Sam Houston” – An Essay by Asher Wells

In competition between 3rd-5th graders across Texas, Asher Wells, Linden Kildare ISD, son of Kerry and Erin Wells, placed second for his essay on “Sam Houston”.

Asher Wells receiving his second place certificate from Dr. Patricia Richey, Chair of the Social Sciences Department and Sponsor of the Webb Society Chapter Jacksonville College in Jacksonville, Texas

“Sam Houston”

He went from runaway teen to war hero. There were so many interesting events in the life of Sam Houston including having the Capital of the Republic of Texas located in the city named after him before being moved to Austin. He was likely the only politician to join an Indian tribe, direct destruction of the Alamo and “caned” a Congressman.

Houston was born in Rockbridge County, Virginia March 2, 1793. When his father died his mother took the family to live on a farm. Houston decided life with the Cherokee Indians sounded better. He was adopted by Chief Oo-Loo-Te-Ka who named him “The Raven.”

Sam Houston, painting c. 1856.

Houston joined the Army at the Battle of Horseshoe Bend in the War of 1812 where he was badly injured twice. His bravery caught the eye of General Andrew Jackson. From there he was nominated by Andrew Jackson’s Democratic Party for the U.S. House of Representatives. He won the election with one hundred percent of the votes. Later he was elected Governor of Tennessee even though he injured a General in a duel.

Legend says Houston was six foot six and he didn’t let anyone mess with him, so when he got word that a Congressman had accused him of fraud in the newspaper, he called him up. They decided to meet on Pennsylvania Ave. in Washington D.C. where he beat the man with a hickory cane. From there he was off to Texas.

He became a Major General in the Texas Army and even ordered James Bowie to blow up the Alamo once. That didn’t happen but Texas declared its independence from Mexico and he now led the army of the Republic of Texas to the Battle of San Jacinto. Even though he was outnumbered he defeated the Mexican army in twenty minutes.  In rallying his men to battle, he is quoted as saying “You will remember this battle! Each minute! Each second! Until the day that you die! But that is for tomorrow, gentlemen. For today, Remember the Alamo!”

Surrender of Santa Anna by William Henry Huddle

After gaining freedom from Mexico, Sam Houston was elected President of the Republic of Texas and found time to marry his third wife.

Houston went to see his friend Andrew Jackson after this but arrived at The Hermitage one hour after the President died. “The towering Texan sank to his knees and openly wept over the body,” said one report. Houston had a child he named Andrew Jackson Houston. He returned to Texas and spoke in favor of Texas joining the United States. The state was annexed shortly after this. Next he went to Washington D.C. as a Senator from Texas and kept going until he was Governor of Texas.

As Governor he did not want to go along with Texas leaving the United States before the Civil War so he stepped down. He said, “I love Texas too well to bring civil strife and bloodshed upon Her.”

Houston died of pneumonia in Huntsville, Texas at age seventy. Sam Houston State University was built there in his honor. The impact of this historic man lives on today.

Sam Houston, Hermann Park, Houston

Websites: Wikipedia


Recognition of Linden Volunteer Fire Department

At some point in their lives, almost every child wants to be a firefighter and for good reason:  They are modern-day heroes, best known for their willingness to risk their lives to save others.

At the Linden Wildflower Trails in April the Linden Heritage Foundation Booth was organized to recognize that child’s dream.  The Linden Volunteer Fire Department provided the City’s 1957 Chevy Firetruck as a backdrop for photos.

To inspire fire safety, over 73 “junior” fire department hats were given to children with many taking photos with the fire truck.

Linden Kildare High School student, Morgan (Lizzie) Guy, created a drawing of a fire truck given to each child to color.

The 1939 Linden Firehouse was named by Preservation Texas to the 2016 Most Endangered Places list in the local public building category.  The Linden Heritage Foundation is actively supporting the restoration of the Firehouse, with plans to bring the building back into service as a commercial asset.

For more information on the 1939 Firehouse go to its page on our website and take an opportunity to donate to the Linden Old Firehouse Rescue Fund.

Special thanks for the Wildflower Trail success goes to Mary Jo Eller Ellison (for use of her building), Linden Volunteer Fire Department and Linden Heritage Foundation Vice President for Marketing & Development, Sandra Westbrook Skoog.




Welcome to Texas Main Street – Re-Imagine Linden’s Downtown

Have you thought about how to re-imagine Linden’s Downtown?

If so, your dreams came true when First Lady of Texas, Mrs. Cecilia Abbott, in official ceremonies on April 18th recognized Linden as a Texas Main Street.  Mrs. Abbott delivered a congratulatory address to Linden citizens and then unveiled an architectural rendering of a more vibrant and consumer-friendly street scene on the west side of the Courthouse Square. 

Entitled “View Along Main Street,” the rendering is the first of a series to be created for Linden by the Texas Main Street Design Team.

The Texas Main Street Program (TMSP) provides historic downtowns the opportunity to re-develop through public and private investment.  Operated in Texas by the Texas Historical Commission, TMSP is one of the oldest and largest in the nation, with 89 fully-designated communities.

After a rigorous and competitive application process, Linden was chosen in January 2017 as one of two designated Main Street communities.  In Texas, Linden is among the three with the smallest populations in the entire program.

TMSP’S mission is to provide technical expertise, resources and support for Texas communities in the preservation and economic revitalization of historic downtowns and commercial districts.

The First Lady was joined by state and local officials, local business owners, volunteers, and dozens of residents eager to see the Main Street vision for Linden. Ms. Abbott commented that Linden’s commitment to historic preservation is apparent, pointing out that the historic Cass County Courthouse was restored with funding assistance from the Texas Historical Commission’s Texas Courthouse Preservation Program.

Texas Historical Commission (THC) Vice Chairman John Crain  stated in his remarks that “historic preservation isn’t just about the past – it’s about developing economic opportunity for the future”.  He announced that the Linden Heritage Foundation has qualified for a grant from the Preservation Trust Fund, also managed by THC, to develop a professional restoration plan for the Old Linden Firehouse.

Mr. Crain then announced THC’s new “Town Square Initiative” which uses an online portal – – to attract potential real estate investors/developers and business owners/entrepreneurs from other places who may want to consider under-utilized or vacant historic properties in Texas Main Street towns.  Linden has its own dedicated page on this website to feature available Main Street properties.

Twelve Main Street cities, including Linden, will help celebrate and promote by hosting local Imagine the Possibilities tours.  Linden’s tour will begin at the Linden City Hall on Friday, May 19th at 5 p.m..

Selected properties featured on each city’s page will be open and accessible to the public, and tour attendees can obtain additional information on downtown development and business resources at a central gathering point.

To get the Main Street ball rolling, the Linden Heritage Foundation hosted a series of field trips and community forums with Mount Vernon and San Augustine to spark initial interest for the program.  Main Street staff and board members from those two cities fielded a range of questions about how they have turned historic buildings into unique entrepreneurial successes, attracted tourism to their town centers, dialed up local sales tax revenues, and supported the property tax base.

By fully committing to Texas Main Street, Linden also can imagine – and ultimately realize – a whole new world of progress, success, and economic development for our downtown.