T-Shirt picture Courtesy of Fred Westin and the Traverso Family.

All American T-Shirts in Old River-Winfree Official T-Shirt Vendor for 5 years running!

(Click on Picture to Enlarge)

2013 ORWFD T-Shirt is a Historic T-shirt.  These T-Shirts will be on sell at Founders Day on October 12, 2013 for $5.00.  They will also be on sell at the City Office Prior to Founders Day.

From Boyce Morris, Jr. Historian of Old River-Winfree Founders Day and Curator of the Future Old River Country Museum

I had the opportunity to sit down, and talk to one of early residents of Winfree, Texas. Mr. Louis B. Traverso.

He is 90 yrs. Old at looks great. Mr. Fred Weston, and wife Kathy Weston accompanied him for the visit. It was such a pleasure to sit down, and talk to them.

They told me about their family that came to this country from Genoa, Italy, and the old home place on Old River.

I was given a picture of the store that once stood on the south side of Old River. Records I’ve read from Mr. Harry Daves collection states that this location use to be named Straddle. There was a post office, store, school (Winfree School), and a house in that location. It’s believed that the post office was located in the Traverso Store. There was also a ferry crossing on Old River near the site of the Traverso Store.

In the picture of the store was Louis B. Traverso’s father Louis John Batiste who was born January 2, 1882. He passed away November 30th, 1960. His wife was Annetta V. Legatos born Sept. 19th, 1887. She passed away April 6th 1934.

The old store is no longer there. It was moved up to the road, which is now Hwy 565. He said that all of the original store was not moved to this location. Only a part of the store was moved. It was moved using logs to roll it on.

There was a camp house built on the site where the store stood. I don’t think it is standing anymore. Mr. Traverso lived there, and went to school at the Winfree school that was located there on Old River. The lumber used in the building of the home that the Weston’s live in now was cut, and made from a saw mill that Mr. Harry Daves once told me about that was located on the North side of Old River.

Mr. Traverso told me that the load of lumber brought over to use only cost thirty five dollars at that time. The home that the Weston’s live in now was moved from the river location to it’s present site using logs to transport it on.

The home is located just west “Priced to Sell” Resale shop now. It was called Old River Grocery back in the 70’s when I moved to this area. I believe the name of the store has been changed several times. He went on to tell me about his Grandpa that owned three coastal boats.

One of the boats was given to Peter Stephen who was born at the George Ball home on Old River. The boat was built at Lake Pochatrain, and named THE GARFIELD. Later it was renamed THE ANNETTA after Mr. Louis B. Traverso’s mother. I was given a picture of the boat, and a page of genealogy records. I have been invited to accompany Mr. Weston, and Mr. Traverso on a tour of the site where the store, and other buildings were once located.

I was also given permission to use my metal detector on that site to try, and locate relics, and artifacts from the past years to add to my collection, and display at the founders day each year until we can get a building for a museum built. Then all the relics, and artifacts I have found on the sites that I have hunted on Old River will be displayed in the museum.

I do not intend to let any of the historical artifacts that I have recovered leave this area. I want them to remain in the Old River-Winfree area for everyone to see, and enjoy as I have.

I’ve seen so many elderly, and younger alike come to view my displays, and tell their stories. It brings back so many memories to them.

It was an honor to talk to Mr. Weston, his wife Kathy, and Mr. Traverso. We laughed, talked, and had a great visit. I hope to be able sit and enjoy their company again in the near future. I would like to hear more of their stories, and the memories of their life on Old River.