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Historic homes a highlight of visit to DeWitt County

By BY SONNY LONG - SLONG@VICAD.COM
Sept. 1, 2011 at 4:01 a.m.

Historic home

DEWITT COUNTY

County population: 20,917

County Seat: Cuero

Major city or cities: Cuero, Yoakum, Yorktown

History of the county's name: DeWitt County was formed from Goliad, Gonzales and Victoria counties in 1846 and named for Green DeWitt.

Square miles: 910

Main highways: U.S. Highway 87, U.S. Highway 183, state Highway 72

County's biggest employer: Cuero Independent School District, 400 employees

CUERO - Steeped in history, DeWitt County has dozens of historic homes and other structures that the state of Texas has recognized with historical markers.

According to the Texas Historical Commission, there are 95 historical markers in DeWitt County.

Historic homes, mostly in Cuero, make up the majority of the historic listing.

"We have so many historic homes here that we can be proud of," said Peggy Ledbetter,the county treasurer who is also a member of the DeWitt County Historical Commission. "We can learn so much from these buildings, a sense of how life was at those times."

"It's our history, and it's right here for us to enjoy," she said.

One of the oldest of these historic homes is the William Frobese home, 305 E. Newman St.

Home owner Nelda Jett, who now lives in Arkansas and has the property for sale, loved living there. She lived in the home from 1989 through 2008.

"My favorite part was the back porch," she said. "I loved the roominess of the house, the tall ceilings."

The home has a state historic marker and is on the National Registry of Historic Places.

On the inside, numbers can still be seen that were used to mark segments of the house when it was moved piece by piece from Indianola in an oxcart, said Jett.

The house was built by Frobese in 1859 and is considered one of the oldest in Texas.

Although not an academically trained architect, Frobese understood sophisticated design principals and possessed great skills and knowledge of the craft, according to the Texas Historical Commission.

Portraits of Frobese and his second wife still hang in the home.

Jett said the house was renovated in the 1970s and has had very few owners for a house its age. She and her husband bought it from the local Episcopal Church that had received it as a donation.

"It's well built," she said.

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