Well, after an all day rain on Friday ,(the day we chose to do laundry and get groceries, naturally), Saturday morning was a cool 34 degrees…no rain, but 25 mph wind gusts…We had planned on going into Jefferson in the afternoon for the annual Jefferson, TX Christmas Parade…Hmmm..I was seriously re-thinking that plan after our morning walk, in our winter coats yet again..But, by 1PM, it had warmed up to 45 degrees, so we braved the cold and away we went…We love the town of Jefferson and all of it’s rich history and historic homes..
This once beautiful old home had burned since we were here last in March of 2012..It was a Bed and Breakfast called Pride House.The home was formally the George W. Brown house, built in 1887. It caught fire in the middle of the night on Aug. 13th last summer. The caretaker was asleep in a cottage out back and was not hurt. No cause has been found of this fire…A good share of Jefferson’s income is tourism and they have many Bed And Breakfasts..I was speaking to the lady at the Tourism Office and she commented that it was very disheartening to the residents of Jefferson to lose such a piece of history. (Yes, I realize my photo is crooked….I tried to straighten it on Picasa and it wouldn’t let me save my edits…grrrrr!)
The town of Jefferson has many really neat homes, as I said..Here are just a couple of them…
You will not be surprised to find that I just had to add some history of this great old Texas town…
“Jefferson, Texas is located on Big Cypress Bayou in the Cypress Valley of Northeast Texas. It is the County seat for Marion County. Named for Francis Marion, a Revolutionary War patriot who was known as the “Swamp Fox”, Marion County was created in 1860. Jefferson was named for Thomas Jefferson, and was conceived as a port city by Allen Urquhart and Daniel Alley, who saw its potential as the head of navigation when they prepared a plan for the town site in 1841.In 1845, when obstructions were removed from Big Cypress Bayou, steamboats could reach Jefferson from New Orleans. After the arrival of the first steamboat, Jefferson became a boom town where many pioneers to Texas first set foot on Texas soil when they disembarked from the steamboats.
During Jefferson’s Golden Era as a steamboat port from 1845 until 1875, it became a cosmopolitan town like most port cities with a confluence of cultures and businesses. The architectural styles, which developed in Jefferson during this period of prosperity, resembled those of New Orleans. The homes were primarily of Greek revival design.When the log raft was removed by the Army Corps of Engineers in the year 1873, the water level in Big Cypress Bayou was reduced and navigation to Jefferson was threatened. Railroads were also extended during this period of time across Texas, which reduced Jefferson’s commercial market area. The town ceased to be a prominent port city and commercial center. However, many of the mid-nineteenth century homes and buildings on the Historical Registry remain.
Today Jefferson Texas is a quaint small town that is the hub of Marion County. Every year seasonally there are many festivals and events. Every weekend there is an attraction, shop, tour or museum open to delight any wish you may have for your trip to the beautiful historic city of Jefferson Texas.”
…as I said before…I LOVE A PARADE!!
The parade was about 1/2 hour. Like most parades, they throw a ton of candy out at the spectators….
…some spectators managed to snag a few Tootsie Roll Pops..
I took a ton of pictures so I believe another collage is in order. This is a great little historic town. We visited here many times. If you want to see some of our other pics from Jefferson, click on this link..Jefferson, March 2012.
After the parade, we had in mind to drive into Uncertain, Texas (about 15 miles toward Caddo Lake). We wanted to stop at the Uncertain Tavern for a beer, but that place wasn’t open.. We opted to have a couple cocktails pick up some catfish dinners “to go” from Big Pines Lodge. This place was a fish camp back in the 1930’s and became a restaurant in the 1950’s. There was a huge flood in May of 1958, and they recovered from that. It had many owners and one of the owners was a former Austin TX detective named George… and he also sold guns from this restaurant.”As the restaurant grew with devoted customers, George began to run out of room to store his guns and ammunition, so he would store his ammunition on tables in the customer area of the restaurant. As you made your way to a table to be served, you could also check out the many boxes of ammunition available. Some people say the reason George displayed all of the ammo was to deter anyone else from trying to rob the restaurant. To quote Johnny Winn, "This was the only place in the state of Texas that you could have a catfish dinner, a mug of beer, buy guns and ammo and still pay out at the same cash register” The restaurant was sold in 2009 to new owners..Two weeks later it burned to the ground.
Above left, the flood of 1958. Above right, is the fire of 2009. The new owners rebuilt and re-opened in 2011. We had some darn good catfish dinners from there…Here are a few of the pictures Den and I took..in a collage. I need someone to tell me to step AWAY from my camera!!
So, all in all, we had a really great day Saturday. This area is just like being in Louisiana..The influence is everywhere, from the wrought iron balconies to the dripping mossy swamps…Put this town on your itinerary , whether you hotel it or RV it…Is is NOT to be missed!!!