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Historic Preservation Efforts in Navasota
Navasota Visitors Center/Horlock House
Originally settled in 1822, the site of present day Navasota is rich in both history and historical assets. Historic resources in Navasota are important to the quality of life by giving it a sense of place, character, and individuality. This section includes the identification, evaluation, mapping, and potential protection of historic sites. For a listing of historic homes in Navasota, please view Historic Homes.
Navasota is a city of unique character, oriented to the development of the railroad. In order to preserve Navasota’s character, the historic fabric in Downtown Navasota and the surrounding residential neighborhoods should be protected. The City contains two structures listed on the National Register of Historic Places and twenty-seven structures recognized by the Texas Historical Commission. Navasota’s character is not strictly derived from pristinely preserved structures, but rather a large and diverse collection of historic of resources.
Hannibal Boone Organization
In 1901, one of the first historic preservation efforts was the organization of the Hannibal Boone Chapter #523 of the Texas Division of the United Daughters of the Confederacy ®. The primary mission of this society was to promote historic preservation within the City of Navasota.
The Navasota Bluebonnet
In 1954, Miss Maurine Chinski wrote the Navasota Bluebonnet. Following her death, the Historical Committee of Navasota and the Navasota/Grimes County Chamber of Commerce published her work. This document is a historical account of the City’s development from 1854 to 1954. The Navasota Bluebonnet was one of the first researched documents about historical elements within the City. This document is available for reference at the Navasota Public Library.
Grimes County Historical Commission & RAMPS
In 1963, the Grimes County Historical Commission was established. One of the Commission’s initial actions was the placing of Civil War markers on graves. Later a program called Researching, Appreciation, Marking, Preserving, and Surveys (RAMPS) was undertaken by the Commission to better identify historic structures. Within the first 12 years of the RAMPS program, 28 sites and structures were identified. The Commission also purchased the P.A. Smith Hotel in 1974, to save it from possible destruction. The hotel was then sold in 1982, after being restored.
In 1981, the Grimes County Heritage Association was formed. During the same year, Roy M. Horlock donated his home to the Association. This home became the major museum in Navasota, as well as the home of the Grimes County Heritage Association. In 1999, it was donated to the City of Navasota. The museum is now available for tours by contacting the Navasota Tourism Center. The Horlock Center serves as a symbolic glimpse of life in turn of the century Navasota.
National Register of Historic Places
Navasota has three sites listed on the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP). These sites include two historic homes and the Historic Downtown District. This is the nation’s official list of culturally and historically significant places worthy of preserving.
For more information about current preservation projects, please visit Visionaries in Preservation Project.