Matagorda County Historical Marker Narrative
 


100 Block Laurel Street     at Fisher Street
28°41’20.07”N      95°58’17.97”W



 


OLD MATAGORDA POST OFFICE

By Kathleen Tatum

 

The old post office at Matagorda, Texas, was built by Cyrus R. Sharp, as a general store on land he purchased from John Plunket and Charles Dale, September 2, 1837. They in turn bought the land from Elias R. Wightman, August 14, 1837, it being a portion of lots two and three given to him by the Proprietors of the City of Matagorda, July 6, 1835.

           
The building, facing Fisher Street, was built with hand-cut lumber of yellow pine and wooden pegs for nails. There are water marks halfway up the ceiling, where it has withstood storms and floods for 150 years. It being situated on the southwest one half of lot 2, block 7, tier 2, in the town site of Matagorda.

           
The store was sold a number of times and some of the owners were Albert Wadsworth, James H. Coleman, Charles A. Bullard, Jacob Clauder, William D. Barbour, John Clauder and Edward Kilbride.

           
When Galen Hodge retired as postmaster, June 10, 1882, Andrew August Duffy, Jacob Clauder’s brother-in-law, became postmaster and opened the post office in Jacob’s brother, John Clauder’s store and next door he opened a funeral parlor.

           
The post office and general store as well as the funeral parlor buildings were owned by John Clauder, when he died April 11, 1890, and Andrew August Duffy was named administrator. Clauder had purchased the store from his landlord, William D. Barbour, July 1876. The inventory of the store, all housed together with the post office consisted of everything from coffee, flour, sugar, fine calico and lace by the yard, to linen handkerchiefs, fine gold watches, shoes, boots, guns, seeds for planting, horse collars, saddles, and harness for horses, as well as a lot more items. The inventory consisted of six pages.

           
Edward Kilbride, a nephew, bought the two buildings and its contents from the other heirs and Andrew August Duffy continued to be postmaster and undertaker. In October 1, 1894, Duffy bought the two buildings and land from Kilbride and continued to serve as postmaster until his retirement, October 16, 1904, when his son, Amos Emery Duffy took charge.

           
Amos Emery Duffy ran the post office and funeral parlor until his retirement, July 18, 1933, serving twenty-nine years. It was after his retirement that the postal service rented the funeral parlor, too.

           
The new post office opened across the street, December 11, 1964, on the corner of Fisher and Caney. It was after this date that the Duffy estate gave the old post office building to the town of Matagorda. The men of the community moved the building three blocks west to the city park and it now rests on the corner of Fisher and Laurel, facing Laurel. The men restored the wooden porch floor to the best the old timers could remember, for it had been destroyed by the 1942 storm.

 

MARKER TO BE REDEDICATED

 

Matagorda – The old post office in this coastal community will receive another Texas Historical Marker during a special ceremony Saturday.

           
The original marker, dedicated in the mid 1960s, was stolen, according to Kathleen Tatum of Wadsworth who did much of the research for the marker. This ceremony, to begin at 10 a.m., will be to rededicate the Old Matagorda Post Office. In order for a new marker to be erected, Tatum had to go through the entire application process with the Texas Historical Commission.

           
Several dignitaries will be in attendance including Amos Edward Duffy, the grandson of Andrew August Duffy, the postmaster who added the post office to what was once a general store.

           
Giving the dedicatory address will be Ryan Beason, great-grandson of Duffy.

           
Ruth Ward, past postmaster in Matagorda, and Karen Yeamans, the current postmaster, will unveil the marker. Geraldyne Havard will read the inscription on the marker.

           
This post office building was originally located across the street from the Masonic Lodge in Matagorda. After the new post office was constructed, the Duffy family gave the old building to the Town of Matagorda which then moved it to the historical park a few blocks down the street.

           
The original marker was a small one mounted to the building. The new marker will be larger and mounted on a pole, Tatum said.            Jan Aikens, The Daily Tribune, Thursday, June 3, 1993 

           
The rededication of the Texas Historical Marker for The Old Matagorda Post Office was held June 5, 1993. The Old Matagorda Post Office is located at the corner of Fisher and Laurel, Matagorda, Texas.

 

OLD MATAGORDA POST OFFICE

 

            THIS STRUCTURE WAS BUILT PRIOR TO 1872 ON A TOWN LOT PURCHASED BY CYRUS R. SHARP IN 1837 LOCATED SEVERAL BLOCKS EAST OF THIS SITE. CONSTRUCTED OF HAND-CUT LUMBER AND HELD TOGETHER WITH WOODEN PEGS, THE BUILDING HOUSED ONLY A GENERAL STORE BEFORE POSTMASTER ANDREW AUGUST DUFFY ADDED THE MATAGORDA POST OFFICE TO ITS FUNCTION IN 1882. HIGH WATER MARKS NOTICEABLE ALONG THE INTERIOR WALLS ARE BELIEVED TO BE THE RESULT OF STORM AND FLOOD DAMAGE. THE STRUCTURE WAS MOVED TO THIS LOCATION AND RENOVATED FOLLOWING THE OPENING OF A NEW POST OFFICE IN 1964.                                                                    (1993)

 

 

Copyright 2009 - Present by Carol Sue Gibbs
All rights reserved

This page was created
Mar. 5, 2009
This page was updated
Mar. 5, 2009
   

HOME