To the editor,

In the May 11 edition of the Empire Tribune, there was an article about the disappearance of historical markers throughout Texas. Bob Brinkman from the Texas Historical Commission who was quoted in the article spoke about this critical situation recently at the state historical commission meeting in Corpus Christi. Since becoming county historical chairman in March of last year, the only marker that has been reported stolen to me is the one which recognized the brick streets on Vanderbilt. Others have been defaced with bullet holes.

A lot of work, time and money goes into receiving a historical marker, and it’s hard to understand why anyone would dishonor both the historical subject that the marker honors, or the sponsors who have given so much to preserve and recognize that historical site.

The article reminds us that in recent years, the state has added the words “Property of the State of Texas” to the bottom of the text, which makes the theft of the marker a felony with a price tag of $1,600. Whether that will deter damage or theft is to be seen, but to me the best solution is to educate the public about the rich history of our area and create a sense of pride and accomplishment in the heritage we all inherit.

Cathey Hartmann,


Erath County Historical Commission