Almost five years in the making, the Plaza of Honor at Fort Croghan Grounds and Museum is complete except for about 200 bricks waiting for names. A brick in honor of a family member, business, church, or organization significant to Burnet County costs $100, which goes to support the museum. Staff photo by Suzanne Freeman
The first 94 of 300 bricks for sale in the Fort Croghan Grounds and Museum’s Plaza of Honor in Burnet have been laid, naming individuals, families, businesses, churches, or organizations who have been part of the county’s history.
The bricks, a bench, a tree, and a plaque are all included in the newly completed project, which proved what can be accomplished when everyone works together, said Cheryl Henderson, chair of the Plaza of Honor Committee for the Burnet County Historical Commission.
“The new plaque is a symbol of how this all came together in the first place,” she said. “It’s all about working together. Everything that happened to make this a reality was about working together.”
The Plaza of Honor is a patio of bricks engraved with the names of 40 early settlers with room to add 300 more names of those who helped shape Burnet County’s past and future. It was dedicated Dec. 4 during a day of holiday activities that began with Christmas on the Square and included Christmas at Old Fort Croghan.
The idea was born from a committee that offered the Burnet County Historical Commission three ideas for how to memorialize the late Carol Anne Goble, an ardent advocate of preserving the area’s history. Commissioners decided to do all three: plant a tree, build a granite bench, and set up a plaza of paving stones with the names of historic figures.
Three entities — the Burnet County Historical Commission, the Burnet County Commissioners Court, and the City of Burnet Historic Board — each donated $2,000 to get the ball rolling on funding the project.
“We had a plaque commissioned for the plaza to recognize how those three entities working together helped kickstart this project and made it happen,” Henderson said. “That’s been our theme all along. That’s how we get things done.”
Henderson promised the first three donors that the plaque would be recognized publicly during the dedication, which almost didn’t happen.
“It was Thursday before the Saturday ceremony before the plaque arrived,” Henderson said. “Tommye and John Potts brought it to the fort on Friday, and their son, Bart Potts, dug the hole and put it up just in time. It just all kind of fit with everyone working together. So much happens behind the scenes.”
The plaza has space for at least 200 more names to be engraved on bricks.
To purchase a brick, visit the Fort Croghan website to download an order form or pick one up at the Burnet Chamber of Commerce, 101 N. Pierce St. Send the completed form with a check to Burnet County Heritage Society, P.O. Box 74, Burnet, TX 78611.
Henderson urged families, organizations, churches, and businesses with a historic connection to Burnet County to consider buying a brick.
“Those who have memorialized a family member, to watch them go up and touch the brick and take a picture of it, it’s very moving,” Henderson continued. “It’s very emotional. It’s a concrete way to recognize those who have made a difference in Burnet County.”
Henderson began working on the plaza of honor when her husband, T.L. Henderson, was still alive. He died in 2019 before it was finished.
“That’s why this is so near and dear to my heart, to see it finished,” she said. “We worked on it together.”