Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

September 13, 2013

Heritage Day gives taste of life in 1800s

Jo Anne Embleton
Jacksonville Daily Progress

RUSK — A community Heritage Day in the park, slated from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at the Jim Hogg Historic Site will give visitors an idea of life in rural East Texas in the 1800s.

“People will be in period costumes, with demonstrations taking place inside and outside of the house,” said Amy Derrington, the Rusk Singletary Memorial Library director who volunteers with a group of local residents to restore the site, which is now operated by the City of Rusk.

“Volunteers helped cleaned up the house and furnish it with period antiques so we can open it back up for tours,” she said. “It's just a group of individuals who have come together to watch over Jim Hogg Park.

According to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, the park is comprised of 178.4 acres and is a memorial to Texas' first native-born governor, James Stephen Hogg, who served from 1891 to 1894.

“During his term as state attorney general and governor, Hogg revolutionized state government and private business by strengthening public respect for law enforcement and establishing the Texas Railroad Commission to enforce state anti-trust laws and promote fair business practices,” the TPW site states.

The site – located off U.S. Highway 84 two miles east of Rusk – was deeded by the City of Rusk in 1941 to the parks system, but later reverted back to local care. Attractions also include a museum and a portion of the original family cemetery. The park is day-use only, and includes an interpretive trail and picnic area.

The Sept. 14 Heritage Day will feature food, fun and activities, along with a quilt show, petting zoo and music.

Admission is free.

To learn more about the event, or to arrange a field trip for students or a group tour of the home, contact Amy Derrington at Singletary Memorial Library, 903-683-5916.