Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Wednesday, February 22, 2012
I have recently visited the Sugar Barn and Brick Works located on the Waters Plantation off of FM 521. These structures were built in the 1840s and are the last standing structures of their kind in the State of Texas. They are truly a treasure of Fort Bend County and are some of the only remaining memories of its heritage. Other structures that existed in the state and county are now reduced to rubble and it is difficult to determine what they were or even how they looked.
These two structures are as important to Texas History as the Alamo. Although there was no battle fought here, it was a major source of industry which opened up commerce and trade in and out of the Republic of Texas when it was needed most. This trade brought vast revenues to the struggling Republic and helped make Texas the state it is today. Both structures are made of handmade bricks and have withstood over 150 years of floods and hurricanes. The 1900 hurricane and flood covered all the area where they now stand. Both structures were built by slaves, and because they still stand are a testament to the craftsmanship and skills of the slave population at that time.
At one time there were many sugar cane plantations along the Brazos River and Oyster Creek. Today, only remnants are left from such a vast industry. These structures allow a rare opportunity for educators, archeologist, architectural students, historians and the public to actually view structures which they have only read about from the past.