Letters – Brock descendant makes plea for cabin’s future
To the Editor:
I recently visited Lockhart to take pictures of the Brock log cabin, before the City possibly destroys it – as it has become an unsafe structure due to what City Council members say is neglect and disrepair. This cabin was donated to the Lockhart Historical Society Trust. Volunteers and donations helped to move it to Lions Park in 1975. When that Society
dissolved, the City of Lockhart agreed to take ownership in 1982. It is in my opinion that agreement would include maintenance, as the city I live in expects me to do maintenance on the structures that I own. One Council member called the cabin an “inherited problem.” The “inheritance” was agreed upon and the “problem” was caused by lack of maintenance.
Some Council members say that the cabin has no history to Lockhart. I beg to differ with that, as the man who built that cabin helped to shape the city of Lockhart to what it is today. His name was Andrew Lee Brock. He had only a wagon and team when his father-in-law gave he and his new bride 200 acres of land as a wedding present in 1850. A city worker told me that the cabin was originally just the two log rooms, but there is a family story telling that the cabin was built just as it looks today with the front gallery, back shed room and the kitchen unattached to the rear.
During the Civil War, Andrew hauled cotton by oxen team to Laredo for the Confederacy. The Indians were quite a problem during that period of time. On his return trip, he would bring supplies such as coffee, salt, sugar and calico, back for his family and the community. Because of this, the people in the Lockhart area were not as short of necessities as were people in other areas during the war.
Andrew farmed, trailed cattle, and raised and trained racehorses. He built a gristmill and a cotton gin. He built several buildings in Lockhart some, gracing the town square. They housed several businesses even the local newspaper. Some were placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1978. As Andrew prospered so did the city of Lockhart. He and his descendants married into some of the most prominent families of Lockhart.
It is in my opinion that this cabin was donated in good faith believing that it would be taken care of. I believe that the historical value would be a great loss to the community and to the Brock family. The Preservation Commission is going to try to save it, and they have until January 2009 to come up with the ways and means to do that. Please ask your district Councilmembers to help and please volunteer yourself in any way that you can.
Darleen (Brock) Brown
North Richland Hills, Texas