Wednesday, December 28, 2011

La Reunion update - some good news and bad news

First off, I hope everyone has enjoyed a lovely and peaceful holiday season. Best wishes to all of you for 2012.

Since I reported on my findings at the La Reunion site in Dallas County last month, I learned a little more about the scant remains of that old house on the original colony site. Turns out that the homestead appears to be that of La Reunion colonist Leon DeLord, who built the house with his son Alphonse. The only thing is, according to Emanuel Santerre, last survivor of the French colony, the DeLord house - remnants of which I photographed and posted on the blog - was built after the La Reunion colony officially dissolved.

The DeLord site can be found somewhere along Westmoreland Road on the old colony site. Thousands of commuters probably pass by it every day without realizing the historical significance of the old homestead. The Episcopal Diocese of Dallas apparently owned the plot for some time, but now it seems unclear as to whom, if anyone, is responsible for the site. And it may not be part of the actual La Reunion colony itself like the cemetery on nearby Fish Trap Road, but it may be as close as anyone gets.

Then again, I've heard rumors of other possible ruins at the La Reunion site, but I'll have to file that under "To Be Continued."

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Museum at Thurber receives $5,000,000 grant

This news is admittedly a bit old by now, but definitely worth sharing in light of my previous coverage of the Erath County ghost town of Thurber. Last month, Tarleton State University announced a gift of $6 million from Mrs. W.K. Gordon, Jr. and the W.K. Gordon, Jr. Foundation. $5 million of the gift will be used to fund the W.K. Gordon Center for the Industrial History of Texas in Thurber, named for Mrs. Gordon's father-in-law - one of the most prominent men in Thurber's history.

The W.K. Gordon Center really is an interesting museum and a fitting tribute to the legacy of Thurber. Please include it on your itinerary whenever you're able to visit this ghost town.