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A Note oH Chambersia
KATHARINE S. EVANS
T HE OLD Thomas Jefferson Chambers' home, "Chambersia,"
at Anahuac, in Chambers County, Texas, is fast falling into
ruin. Untenanted for many years, standing alone and gaunt in
a grove of pecan trees, it continues to overlook the bluff and
the quiet waters of Trinity Bay, where its builder originally
envisioned a rich commerce, with railroads meeting the Mexican
Gulf at this landlocked port.
Built before the Civil War by Thomas Jefferson Chambers,
as a home for his family, the portion now standing is but a
small part of the original structure, which was erected by car-
penters and workmen from Galveston. Constructed of pine and
cypress and sturdily fashioned, its plainness is relieved by a
spiral stair, with a winding rail, that ascends on the outside
of the house, from the lower front gallery to the upper gallery.
By way of further decoration, a dormer window of stained
glass on the east has as its motif a Texas star, five-pointed, of
deeply colored glass, which General Chambers had made in the
North. This star was to proclaim to all who saw it that a
Texan lived within, a Texan by adoption, who had come to the
young country in its earliest years.
A barn, so large that it extended across the entire width of
the cleared tract, was filled with fine stock. Besides two blooded
bulls, each in his separate stall, and many Jersey cows, the barn
sheltered fine mules, for work on the plantation, and a pair
imported by the General from Spain, for the family carriage.
There were saddle horses for all who cared to ride, the General's
own big grey horse, and his daughter's pony, Starlight.
Near the house, begging to be fed, a flock of peafowls racked
the air with their hoarse calls and spread their beauty in the
sun. Turkeys, guineas, and hens were in such numbers that to
gather a hundred eggs in a day was not unusual. Truck gardens
and farm supplied the table and the quarters abundantly, and
cotton, of course, was raised for clothing for the slaves.
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 50, July 1946 - April, 1947. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101117/. Accessed October 1, 2014.