About 1928 San Augustine County officials tore down their courthouse to make way for a new building. Rather than move all the public records to the new courhouse, they hauled away those they deemed expendable to gullies, where they were mixed with rubble from the old courthouse. A few citizens managed to rescue what they could, leaving the rest to the elements.
In 1929, a historically-minded citizen of San Augustine, Horace E. Wolcott, wrote to the then Stephen F. Austin State Teachers College. He described how he came into possession of some of the documents, offering them for a small fee to the College. The College did pay the small amount asked and obtained the collection.
(Wolcott, Horace E. to Rev. George L Crocket, ALS, 28 December 1929. George Louis Crocket Papers, East Texas Research Center, Ralph W. Steen Library, Stephen F. Austin State University, Nacogdoches, Texas.)
Scope and Content Note
The San Augustine County, Texas Records 1831-1906 collection consists of miscellaneous loose papers, mostly of records of the San Augustine District Court. The records include criminal and civil cases, promissory notes and accounts, some oaths to the Board of Land Commissioners, estate records, treasurer warrants, tabular statements of schools, letters, and manifests. A detailed list of inventory is included in the volume San Augustine County, Texas Courthouse Records and Loose Papers 1831-1906, Inventory and Index, available in the ETRC.
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