The Commission

Walker County Historical
Commission
1301 Sam Houston Ave.
Rm. 218
Huntsville, TX 77340
(Courthouse Annex)

Telephone

(936) 435-2497

WCHC Online

Send email

Meetings

3rd Monday of each month
5:30 P.M.
(except June & August)
Walker County Museum

Museum

Gibbs-Powell Home
1228 11 St. at Avenue M
Huntsville, TX

Hours

Friday 12-4PM
Saturday 12-4PM
Commission meetings,
and by appointment

Telephone

(936) 295-2914

Tours

(936) 291-3581
(leave message)
(936) 291-5931
(Statue Visitors Center)

Join Us on Facebook

News

Hot Topics

Handy Information

About the Historical Commission

What Is the Historical Commission?

The Walker County Historical Commission (WCHC) is a constituted organization of Walker County government composed of citizen members who are appointed by the County Commissioners and serve for two year terms. The Commission reports to the County Judge and County Commissioner's Court. It was organized in 1963 for the purpose of preservation of the county's historical and cultural artifacts. Each county of Texas is required by State law to have a historical commission.

The organization works in various fields, including archeology, architecture, history, economic development and heritage tourism for the benefit of present and future generations. The agency helps identify and preserve historic sites and helps to preserve the heritage of Walker County. Historic preservation is a vital part of a promising future within our community.

Commission members have initiated the research, writing documentation, and preparation of over 89 historical markers in Walker County.

Mission

Role of Historical Commissions

CHCs are responsible for reviewing all applications for state historical markers before they come to the THC. They also serve as advisors to their commissioners court on matters of historic preservation. In addition, they often operate county history museums, develop archival collections, promote local history celebrations and heritage tourism, publish books and brochures dealing with the county's history and historic sites, undertake surveys of cultural and historic resources, conduct oral history projects and all other manner of preservation programs.

History

The Walker County Historical Survey Committee was first appointed in 1963 by the County Judge and Commissioners Court. In 1973 the name was changed to "County Historical Commission" by the Texas Legislature.

In 1983 the Commission began negotiating with the Ben Powell family about the historical Gibbs home that had been in their family since 1897 and had been built by Thomas Gibbs in 1862. This Greek Revival house is one of the last remaining 19th Century houses in Huntsville. In July 1984 the Commissisoners Court leased the house from the Powell family for One Dollar a year for a fifty year term and turned the management of the house over to the Commission for operation as a County museum and archive for the citizens of Walker County.

Awards

The WCHC has earned numerous awards during the 41 year existence, including the distinguished Service Award given by the Texas Historical Commission, the state agency for historic preservation.