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In places
like Independence, preservation can be used to encourage a strong sense of place and connect us with our heritage.




Bethlehem Lutheran Church in William Penn


Preserving Independence
Historic preservation is important to the vitality and development of Texas communities. The goal of the Independence Preservation Trust is to work with the local community to discover, identify, and preserve its visual and cultural links to the past. We hope this will foster a greater appreciation of Independence’s rich past and preservation of its rural character.

Established in 1999 by Mary and David Wolff, the Independence Preservation Trust is a private non-profit foundation. In the short period of its existence, the Trust has sponsored a variety of programs, including:

  • A walking and driving tour featuring illustrated interpretive exhibits
    that tell the history of Independence.
  • Baylor Park on Windmill Hill developed in partnership with Baylor University
    and dedicated in March 2006.
  • “Trees for Independence” that added 35 live oak trees to the village landscape via donations from individual contributors.
  • Architectural night lighting of five historic churches in the Independence neighborhood, made possible by the cooperative efforts of the churches, numerous donors, and the Trust.
  • Acquisition of two historic properties, most particularly the General Jerome B. Robertson House, and transferring them for a nominal fee to individuals for restoration.
  • Working with the Texas Department of Transportation to improve road and traffic safety in this little village that is intersected by two busy roadways (50 and 390).
  • Trimming trees throughout the neighborhood.
  • Marker recognition for Liberty Baptist Church, the historic African American church in Independence, in conjunction with the Independence Historical Society and the church.

Nationally recognized preservation consultant Ellen Beasley worked with the
Independence Preservation Trust in developing and researching these projects.

Information about the Trust can be obtained by contacting: info@independencetx.com
or by writing Independence Preservation Trust,
Twenty Briar Hollow Lane, Houston, Texas 77027-2893.
Phone 713-626-8050 or 1-888-626-8051.



Independence Historical Society

The Independence Historical Society of Washington County, Texas, works to preserve the history of the area, promote its future, and to improve the community in general.

The Society is headquartered in the Independence Visitor Center, and meets once a month January thru May and again September thru November. The meetings, at Independence Baptist Church or at various locations in the area, usually have a historic presentation either by members or guest speakers.

The Society maintains three historical buildings on property owned by the Society. They are located next to Baylor Park in Independence. A Spring Tour of the buildings is offered to the public on four weekends every spring. Members of the Society serve as docents in period costume and present the history of the buildings and of Independence. Different artisans demonstrating mid-1800s crafts, music and storytelling enhance the tour weekends at Baylor Park. The buildings are opened for special tours of 25 people or more, year round, and these tours are conducted by docents.

Documentary photo: The Texas Collection, Baylor University. Baylor Dedication photo: Baylor Photography. Masthead photo: Jeff Heger Photography. Night photo: Scott Hill, Brenham Portrait Gallery. Other photos: Ellen Beasley.

Independence Preservation Trust
Twenty Briar Hollow Lane
Houston, Texas 77027-2893
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