San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas
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November 30th, 2008
County Historical Commission plans holiday book sale, signing

From the Hays Historical Commission

Find the perfect gift for the book lovers and history buffs on your Christmas shopping list at a Holiday Book Sale and Book Signing Dec. 11, sponsored by the Hays County Historical Commission.

The event will be held in the Courthouse Rotunda from 5-6:30 p.m. Several local authors will be on hand to sign their books and visit with guests.

One of the books offered at the sale will be Sueños y Recuerdos del Pasado (Dreams and Memories of the Past); A Community History of Mexican American in San Marcos, Texas. Published in 2000 after an exhaustive effort by the Hispanic Historical Committee of the HCHC, this book chronicles every aspect of Mexican-American life and culture in San Marcos. It also includes a compilation of 32 oral histories by individuals or family members of early San Marcos settlers. Members of the Committee who produced the book were Ofelia Vasquez-Philo, Yolanda Espinoza, Soila Rodriguez, Frank Saucedo, Angie Tobias, Lila Knight and the late Velia Cavazos and Richard Rodriguez. Mrs. Philo, a current member of the HCHC, will be among those available to sign copies of the book. She is also planning a second volume of Mexican American history that will include all of Hays County and is soliciting contributions of oral histories to include in this project.

Also on sale will be People and Places in and around Historic Buda by historians Mary Giberson and the late Barbara Younts. This volume includes over a hundred vignettes of Buda’s unique characters and places. The research pieces were originally written for the Hays County Free Press and subsequently collected under one cover in 2003 for this Buda Economic Council-funded project. The book remains the single most important collection of local history on Buda and its immediate vicinity. Mrs. Giberson will be on hand to sign copies of the book.

Widely regarded as a starting point for study of any Hays County history-related topic, Clear Springs and Limestone Ledges: A History of San Marcos and Hays County is another volume on sale through the HCHC. Recently reprinted, this 1986 Texas Sesquicentennial publication represents the combined work of former HCHC members Frances Stovall, Dorothy Wimberley Kerbow, Louise Simon, Dorothy Woods Schwartz, Gene Johnson and the late Maxine Storm, with photographic work by Cindy McCoy.

The book documents the county through major sections on San Marcos, Kyle, Buda, Dripping Springs, and Wimberley and their related smaller communities. Mrs. Stovall, Mrs. Johnson and Mrs. Schwartz are all scheduled to attend the book signing event.

The two-volume Hays County Cemetery Inscriptions documents burial sites and inscriptions in Hays County (Volume 1) and in San Marcos (Volume 2). The result of an intensive research effort by former HCHC members Jo Ann Elam Hearn and Dorothy Wimberley Kerbow, Volume 1 was published in 1988 and revised in 1994. Each of the approximately 80 burial sites is described and the known history related. Volume 2, completed in 1990 by Hearn and Kerbow, includes a comprehensive history and inventory of San Marcos Cemetery inscriptions as well as a diagram of the cemetery’s physical layout.

It is a must for anyone researching (or searching for) gravesites within the City of San Marcos. Mrs. Hearn will also be on hand at the book sale.

Finally, two volumes documenting the histories of two local schools are available for sale. Echos in Your Memories of San Marcos Baptist Academy documents the history of the Academy from its founding in 1907 until 1990, when the book was published. Jean Akridge Shand, another former HCHC member, provides detailed information about the Academy’s presidents, its original campus and current campus, and the many military, athletic, religious and student life traditions that make the school unique. Mrs. Shand will be at the sale to sign copies of her book. History of the Coronal Institute gives an insightful glimpse of the early private school founded in San Marcos in 1868.

Personal memories, a list of Methodist ministers, faculty and students who lived and studied at old Coronal until it closed in 1918 is preserved in this book, which was compiled by Herschel C. Walling and published by the Hays County Historical and Genealogical Society in 1991.

All of the books offered at the Dec. 11 sale are also available on the HCHC website (www.hayshistoricalcommission.com). Proceeds from the sale of the books help fund the restoration projects of the HCHC.

— SHELLEY HENRY

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