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Clockwise from the top left: First United Methodist Church (1861), Old Harrison County Courthouse (1900), Texas & Pacific Depot  (1912), Ginocchio Hotel (1896).

ON THE RIGHT TRACK: Saving Historic Texas Railroad Resources


Thursday, August 11

Join Preservation Texas for a day of discussion, networking and tours related to the challenges and opportunities of saving historic railroad depots and related historic resources in Texas. Speakers include architects, preservationists and community advocates who will share their own experiences and answer questions from participants like you.

Thank you to our sponsors and everyone who participated. It was a big success.




This introductory session will outline the significance of historic railroad resources in Texas, and introduce a new way of thinking about endangered historic places that we call “Most Endangered Places 2.0.” A new grant from the Burdine Johnson Foundation will begin a new effort to reshape our approach to identifying and saving at-risk historic sites, starting with historic railroad depots, small town theaters and county jails. (8:40-9:15)
Evan Thompson, Executive Director, Preservation Texas

Learn about recent preservation activities in East Texas from the Texas Historical Commission and the Texas Forest Trail Region, as well as Preservation Texas updates on some of its Most Endangered Places in the region. (9:15-9:45)
Leslie Wolfenden, Historic Resources Survey Coordinator, Texas Historical Commission
Marty Prince, Executive Director, Texas Forest Trail Region

The restoration of the historic Southern Pacific Passenger Depot in Wharton, Texas, winner of a Preservation Texas Honor Award, offers important lessons about how to approach the restoration of a depot from an architectural standpoint. Houston architect and Preservation Texas board member David Bucek will share his experience in developing a phased restoration plan for this important community landmark. (10:00-10:30)
David Bucek, Architect, Stern and Bucek Architects
When passenger depots no longer serve passengers, new uses are needed. Historically, depots were much more than transportation buildings – they were community gathering centers, often sited in prominent locations. Representatives of three projects will discuss their journeys to transform vacant depots into active community assets once again: the Missouri Pacific Depot in Kyle, the Southern Pacific Railroad Depot, and the International & Great Northern Depot in Mineola. (10:30-11:20)
Kate Johnson, Chairman, Hays County Historical Commission (Kyle Depot)
Carrie Woliver, President, Friends of the Orange Depot (Orange Depot)
Mercy Rushing, City Administrator, City of Mineola (Mineola Depot)
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No visit to a county seat would be complete without an opportunity to tour the historic courthouse. The Preservation Texas Honor Award-winning restoration of the breathtaking Harrison County Courthouse (1900), designed by J. Reily Gordon, will offer inspiration.  Former County Judge Richard Anderson will provide some background on the building and the restoration project before lunch and a tour. (11:20-1:00)
Richard Anderson, Former Harrison County Judge
Railroads were a system, and while depots facilitated access for passengers and freight, historic rail lines, railroad hotels, section houses, water towers and other facilities were essential components of that system. The historic Texas State Railroad in Anderson and Cherokee counties and the Lewis Railroad Hotel in San Augustine are two such resources that are being saved after having been listed as Most Endangered Places. Learn what’s being done to protect these irreplaceable historic places. (1:00-1:45)
Greg Udolph, General Manager, Texas State Railroad
Jennifer Beisel, D.A., Associate Professor, Stephen F. Austin State University (Lewis Railroad Hotel)
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For decades, Dallas Heritage Village has been preserving and interpreting historic structures relocated from the Dallas region to Old City Park. The recent restoration and reinterpretation of the Village’s historic Missouri, Kansas & Texas Depot offers lessons in how a depot’s history can offer an authentic experience. (1:45-2:00)
Evelyn Montgomery, PhD., Director of Collections, Dallas Heritage Village
Train Depot - Old City Park - Dallas
Since its creation in 1971, Amtrak has been making use of historic railroad depots. Five depots used by Amtrak in Texas are listed on the National Register of Historic Places: Dallas, El Paso, Gainesville, Marshall and Mineola. The importance of keeping active depots in use is particularly important in Marshall, where the depot is both an Amtrak station and a museum. (2:15-2:45)
Mary Hendricks, President, Texas & Pacific Depot and Museum
Griff Hubbard, Amtrak
Attendees are encouraged to ask questions of the day’s presenters and respond to one another as we work to develop ideas for a comprehensive statewide program to preserve and interpret historic railroad resources. (2:45-3:30)

The historic Ginocchio Hotel (1896) is being rehabilitated a local developer. This tour provides a behind-the-scenes look at preservation in progress in this architectural anchor, adjacent to the Texas and Pacific Depot, within the Ginocchio Historic District. (4:00-4:30)
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Join Preservation Texas board members, speakers and friends from around East Texas and across the state at the restored Texas & Pacific Depot and Museum (1912), a Recorded Texas Historic Landmark that contributes to the Ginocchio Historic District. Drinks and light fare served. (4:30-6:00)




First United Methodist Church (1861)
300 East Houston Street
Free parking

8:00-8:30         Registration and Coffee
8:30-8:40         Welcoming Remarks
8:40-9:15         Most Endangered Places 2.0 and the
                         Importance of Historic Railroad Resources

                         Evan Thompson, Preservation Texas
9:15-9:45         Regional Preservation Updates
                         Leslie Wolfenden, Texas Historical Commission
                         Marty Prince, Texas Forest Trail Region
9:45-10:00       Morning Break
10:00-10:30     Architectural Case Study: Restoring the Wharton Depot
                         David Bucek, Stern and Bucek Architects
10:30-11:20     Panel Discussion: Planning for Adaptive Use
                         Kate Johnson, Hays County Historical Commission (Kyle Depot)
                         Carrie Woliver, Friends of the Orange Depot (Orange Depot)
                         Mercy Rushing, City of Mineola (Mineola Depot)
11:20-11:30     Pre-Tour Introduction to the Harrison County Courthouse
                         Richard Anderson, Former Harrison County Judge
11:30-1:00       Lunch and Self-Guided Tour of Harrison County Courthouse
1:00-1:45         Beyond The Depot: Endangered Railroad Resources
                         Greg Udolph, Texas State Railroad
                         Jennifer Beisel, D.A., Stephen F. Austin State University
1:45-2:00         Telling A Depot’s Story
                         Evelyn Montgomery, PhD., Dallas Heritage Village
2:00-2:15         Afternoon Break
2:15-2:45         Amtrak’s Historic Depots
                         Mary Hendricks, Texas & Pacific Depot & Museum (Marshall Depot)
                         Griff Hubbard, Amtrak
2:45-3:30         The Future Of Railroad Heritage Preservation: An Open Discussion

Ginocchio Hotel (1896)
703 North Washington Avenue

Texas & Pacific Depot Museum (1912)
800 North Washington Avenue




Registration closed. See you in Waco!

Questions? Contact us!
512-472-0102   info@preservationtexas.org



There a number of hotel options in Marshall. Two historic lodging options near the East Texas Regional Meeting venue that Preservation Texas can recommend are:

Three Oaks Bed & Breakfast
(903) 935-6777

Wisteria Garden Bed & Breakfast
(903) 938-7611




Richard Anderson
Former Harrison County Judge, Harrison County

Born in Marshall, with education from Texas A&M and Baylor Law School, Richard Anderson is an attorney, businessman, rancher, and former Harrison County Judge and Texas State Senator.

Historic preservation has been an important part of Anderson’s life. In 1976, he purchased and renovated Edgemont, a Harrison County residence built in 1845. It was placed on the National Historic Register in 1977 and recorded Texas Historic Landmark in 1981. He and his wife, Christina, continue to live there today. Richard and Christina Anderson also partnered with Jerry and Judy Cargill on the renovation of the 1929 Hotel Marshall and, in 2013, gifted the renovated property to East Texas Baptist University to house a graduate program. As County Judge, Anderson took over the supervision of the restoration of the 1901 Harrison County Courthouse from 2007-2009, with completion in June, 2009. Knowing the importance of ongoing maintenance of restored historic buildings, Anderson, as County Judge, structured a $1.4 endowment for the courthouse through the sale of historic tax credits. The endowment is designed to assist Harrison County with the ongoing preservation of the restored Courthouse in perpetuity and is the only endowment of its kind for a county courthouse in the state of Texas.


Jennifer “Perky” Beisel, D.A.
Associate Professor, Stephen F. Austin State University

Perky Beisel is an Associate Professor in the History Department at Stephen F. Austin State University. Her research interests include the Gilded Age, stable architecture, and cemetery preservation. She is the co-director of the Public History M.A. program which trains students in the historic preservation, museums, archives, and oral history fields.

Since joining the faculty at SFA in 2005 she has completed numerous projects in cooperation with the public including a county-wide cemetery survey in Houston County, updating and digitizing the Angelina County Historic Sites Survey and City of Nacogdoches Historic Sites Survey (both originally conducted in 1986), and processing over 100 oral history interviews in the Bobby H. Johnson Oral History Collection. Perky served on the board of Millard’s Crossing Historic Village, Inc. for nine years and is currently a member of the Nacogdoches Historic Landmarks Preservation Commission, the VP of the Friends of Historic Nacogdoches Inc., the president of the Texas Oral History Association, and board member of the Association for Gravestone Studies. She earned her doctorate at Middle Tennessee State University in Historic Preservation in 2005.


David Bucek
Architect, Stern and Bucek Architects

David Bucek holds a B.Arch from the University of Houston and an M.Arch from Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design. A champion of good design past and present, he has taught at the University of Houston and the University of Texas at Austin. He serves on the board of Preservation Texas, AIA Houston, Houston Mod and as a commissioner on the Houston Archaeological and Historical Commission. He and William Stern formed Stern and Bucek Architects in 1999, after many years of working together at William F. Stern & Associates Architects.


Mary Hendricks
President, Texas & Pacific Depot and Museum

Mary Hendricks moved to Marshall, Texas in 2003 and fell in love. She renewed her love of history and focused her efforts on the Texas & Pacific Depot and its rich contribution to Marshall. She organized and supervised a model train show that was in the local convention center for seven years from 2004 through 2011, forging many lasting relationships with the City of Marshall and around 75 vendors.

In 2005, Mary was appointed by Harrison County Judge Wayne McWhorter, to the fourteen-county East Texas Rural Transportation Committee. The Committee helped the T&P Depot receive funding from TXDOT for improvements including a wheelchair lift. She also worked with the East Texas Council of Governments to create a Marshall To-Go Bus that services the rural area provides transportation for needy people.


Griff Hubbard
Revenue Manager, Amtrak

A graduate of Texas A&M University and 5th generation railroader, this is Griff Hubbard’s 45th year in the industry. He is currently the revenue manager for Amtrak’s Chicago to Los Angeles Texas Eagle and Amtrak’s Fort Worth to Oklahoma City Heartland Flyer. He is also a member of the board of directors on the Texas State Railroad Authority and is Executive Director of the Ark-La-Tex Corridor Council, Inc. for higher speed passenger rail along the I-20 corridor.

Having begun his railroad career as a track laborer, Griff came up through the various ranks of service between Texarkana and Fort Worth and Longview and Palestine. He is the last original Texas & Pacific Railway employee remaining in active Amtrak service.


Kate Johnson
Chairman, Hays County Historical Commission

Kate Johnson has been a preservation advocate for many years. She has served as Chairman of the Hays County Historical Commission since 1999. As chairman, the commission has listed numerous properties to the National Register of Historic Places, erected many Historical Markers, and produced over a dozen historical documentaries on the county’s history.

Kate played an instrumental role in the restoration of the Katherine Anne Porter Childhood Home in Kyle, the Old Hays County Jail in San Marcos, the Winters-Wimberley House in Wimberley, and the Depot in Kyle. She has served on the boards of numerous non-profits devoted to historic preservation around Hays County, including the Wimberley Institute of Cultures, the Kyle Train Depot Committee, Old Town Kyle Advocates, and Preservation Associates, Inc. – a county-wide non-profit association devoted to the preservation of historic and cultural resources. She also founded the Historic Bridge Foundation, a national non-profit foundation devoted to the preservation of historic bridges across the United States.

Kate was the 2010 recipient of the John Ben Shepperd Leadership Award and the first recipient of the Kate Johnson Award for Volunteer of the Year, which is named in her honor (2015).


Evelyn Montgomery, PhD.
Director of Collections, Dallas Heritage Village

Originally from Connecticut, Evelyn Montgomery graduated from Texas Christian University, with a degree in interior design. She later got her M.Arch. from the University of Texas in Arlington and a Ph.D. in History from University of Texas Dallas. She began working at Dallas Heritage Village in 2001 as a tour guide, later becoming curator of collections and then director of collections, exhibits and preservation. Montgomery oversees repair work of the Village’s historic structures as well as takes care of artifact collections, creates exhibits, and does public speaking on historical topics.

In addition to speaking to local groups, Evelyn has presented four times at the Dallas History Conference and at state and national conferences. Active on her neighborhood association board of directors and vice president of the Dallas Homeowners League, she also serves on the Dallas Landmark Commission and is a volunteer with Preservation Dallas. Presently, she is writing and editing a collaborative book for Texas A&M University Press called “The Historic Villages of Texas” about the historic structures preserved in six village-style museums across the state, including Dallas Heritage Village.


Marty Prince
Executive Director, Texas Forest Trail Region

In June 2013, Marty Prince was named Executive Director for the Texas Forest Trail Region. She obtained a BFA from UT Austin and Masters from the Mount Royal School of Art at MICA in Baltimore, Maryland. She has 19 years marketing and graphic design experience, and previously served as Tourism Coordinator for the Nacogdoches CVB, Marketing Director for the Fredonia Hotel & Convention Center, and Communications Director for Nacogdoches ISD.

Marty is a Nacogdoches native, who moved “back to Nac” in 2005 and married her high school crush – Kendal in 2006. Kendal has a green thumb and Marty has a passion for power-tools. Their weekends are spent working in the garden and “fixing-up” their historic home built in 1885.


Mercy Rushing
City Administrator, City of Mineola

Mercy Rushing is a Certified Community Developer and Certified Tourism Executive with 22 years’ experience in Municipal Government focusing on Community & Economic Development with an emphasis on Downtown Development & Restoration Program & Projects. She was in charge of the restoration of downtown streetscape, historical museum development and the depot transportation project for the City of Mineola. She is currently serving as the City Manager and Executive Director of Mineola Economic Development Corporation.

Mercy was very active in the Texas Downtown Association and served on the Executive Board of Directors for 3 years and is a proud recipient of the 1997 Amtrak Presidential “Champion of the Rails” Award and was also named the 1999 Texas Historical Commission’s “Main Street Manager of Year”.


Evan Thompson
Executive Director, Preservation Texas

Evan R. Thompson is the executive director of Preservation Texas. Prior to joining PT in 2014, he served for four years as executive director of the Preservation Society of Charleston and served for six years as executive director of Historic Beaufort Foundation, both in South Carolina. He is a graduate of The University of Texas School of Law and the University of Richmond. In 2011, he was the inaugural recipient of the National Trust for Historic Preservations’ American Express Aspire Award, recognizing an emerging national leader in the preservation field.


Greg Udolph
General Manager, Texas State Railroad

Greg Udolph started working in the railroad industry in 2001 at the Ohio Central Railway System. Since then, he has logged 15 years of working at tourist and short-line railroads in Michigan, Utah, Nevada, and Colorado before he became the General Manager and Chief Mechanical Officer of the Texas State Railroad in April of this year. Working at different railroads has given Greg a unique perspective and wide range of experience including steam locomotive repair, passenger and freight car rebuilding, building restoration, maintenance shop management and daily operation supervision. In addition, his experience in tourism and with special events makes him uniquely qualified to head up the ‘Official Railroad of Texas.’

Greg is a graduate of Ohio University with a degree in Communications. His wife Charis and two year old son Hudson are enjoying life in East Texas. His plan for the Texas State Railroad is to continue to improve on its train ride offerings to keep it on the growth path it has enjoyed the last several years under Iowa Pacific Holdings… and keep this true Texas Treasure stable for Texas families to enjoy for years to come.


Leslie Wolfenden
Historic Resources Survey Coordinator, Texas Historical Commission

Leslie Wolfenden is the Historic Resources Survey Coordinator for the Texas Historical Commission where she manages the Historic Texas Highways and Historic Resources Survey programs since 2013. Prior to that, she worked as a project design assistant for the THC Texas Main Street program for two years. Before coming to the THC, she worked for four years in the private sector for environmental consulting firms, where she conducted a broad range of historic resources surveys.

Leslie volunteers for Save Austin’s Cemeteries, a non-profit organization that is dedicated to preserving historic cemeteries in Austin through documentation and education, and recently ended a 3-year term on the City of Austin’s Historic Landmark Commission. She has a Master’s in Historic Preservation from the University of Texas Austin, a Bachelor’s in Architecture from the University of Texas Arlington, and an Associate’s Degree in Interior Design from Bauder College.


Carrie Woliver
President, Friends of Orange Depot

Carrie P. Woliver is an author, independent television producer, singer, and founder/president of Friends of the Orange Depot in Orange, TX. Married almost 50 years to Ronald Woliver she is a proud grandmother of two precious grandsons. Carrie, a native of Orange who resides in Houston, found in 2010 the old 1917 dairies of her grandparents and decided the historical information needed to be shared. So she went to work writing a book about them. Her grandparents, the Joiners, lived right by the railroad tracks so she named her book “The Train Stopped in Orange” (available on Amazon.com).

Carrie is always happy to share the story of how writing that book has led to the restoration of the 1910 Southern Pacific Depot and how the community effort to save the depot is uniting the city.