Today was another good day. I went on the CARE bus with nine others to Huntsville to visit the Sam Houston Memorial Museum. [www.samhoustonmemorialmuseum.com] One thing I learned that intrigued me was that the Houston clan is a sept (branch) of the McDonald clan of Scotland. My family on my father’s side is also of the McDonald clan.
The Sam Houston Memorial Museum historic site occupies eighteen acres of the original farm of over 200 acres owned by General Sam Houston and his family from 1847 until 1858. In 1927 the legislature appropriated $15,000 for development of the home and site, and a restoration and reconstruction project was undertaken. The museum is owned and managed by Sam Houston State University. The complex contains ten buildings and is divided between areas of natural woodland and landscaped spaces adjacent to the historic buildings. An interesting touch is the flock of chickens that have free range of the grounds.
The most important structure on the grounds is Woodland Home, built in 1847 when Houston was serving as one of the first United States Senators from Texas and was spending more than half of each year in Washington, D.C. Also dating to the 1847–58 period is the law office, a single-room log cabin that served Houston as a study and gathering place for political discussions.
Steamboat House, a building of unusual architectural design, was rented by the family when Houston returned to Huntsville in 1861 following his dismissal as Texas governor for failing to pledge his loyalty to the Confederacy. On July 26, 1863, he died in the house and his funeral was conducted from the front parlor. He is buried in Oakwood Cemetery.
After our tour we had lunch at El Gordo Taquería and then stopped at the new H-E-B Supermarket, where several people bought groceries. Not I, however! One of the main reasons I wanted to come to CARE was that I wouldn’t have to shop for groceries and then cook them.
The weather wasn’t unbearably hot today, which was a welcome respite.