Cameron’s former First National Bank getting marker
Historical building ceremony 10 a.m. Thursday
Rockdale Reporter - May 5, 2011
CAMERON - The Texas Historical Commission (THC) has recognized the former First
National Bank of Cameron building as a significant part of Texas history by awarding
it an Official Texas Historical Marker. The designation honors the building, which
is now home of Classic Bank, as an important and educational part of local history.
A dedication ceremony to commemorate the event will be held at 10 a.m. Thursday, May
5 at the bank, 102 S. Houston in Cameron.
First National Bank of Cameron, organized in 1889, was one of the first banks in
Texas to be chartered. It was preceded by two private banks, the Buckholts Exchange
Commission, a small frontier deposit office which failed in 1892, and the Milam
County Bank which was a victim of the Panic of 1892.
Through the years the bank has been stable and solid and has been of great benefit
to Milam County. The bank has enjoyed strong leadership. For the past sixty three
years, three generations of the Williams family have provided strong leadership for
the institution. Because of this and other effective leadership, the bank remains
today a solid, influential financial institution.
Representing the Texas Historical Commission for this occasion will be Bratten
Thomason, director of the Division of History for the Texas Historical Commission,
Geri Burnett, chair of the Milam County Historical Commission, Jackie Thornton,
marker chair of the Commission and bank president Ricky Williams.
“The Official Texas Historical Marker program helps bring attention to community
treasures and the importance of their preservation,” said Mark Wolfe, executive
director of the THC. “Awareness and education are among the best ways to guarantee
the preservation of our state’s history. This designation is a tool that will
increase public awareness of important cultural resources,” Wolfe said.
A subject qualifies for a marker if two basic criteria are met: historical
significance and age. Historical significance is established by reviewing its role
and importance in local history, and the age requirement depends on the topic. The
THC’s Official Texas Marker Policies are outlined in the Official Texas Historical
Marker Guidelines and Application Form, which may be obtained by contacting the
History Programs Division, Texas Historical Commission, at 512-463-5853 or visiting
the web site at www.thc.state.tx.us.
There are two types of Texas Historical Markers. Subject markers are posted solely
for educational awareness and awarded more frequently than the Recorded Texas
Historic Landmark (RTHL), which is a legal designation for historic structures and
comes with a measure of protection. Unlike subject markers, the RTHL must also meet
a third criterion—architectural integrity.
Texas has the largest marker program in the United States with approximately 12,000
markers. Seventeen states have used the Texas program as a model; the THC reviews
more than 200 marker applications each year.
The Texas Historical Commission is the state agency for historic preservation. The
agency administers a variety of programs to preserve the archeological, historical
and cultural resources of Texas.