Wyalucing Plantation parlor chairs

Chairs worth diving for

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Beverly Lafayette Holcombe brought these two Victorian rosewood chairs to Texas when he moved his family here from Tennessee in the 1840s.

The family intended to build a home in the far east Texas town of Marshall. The chairs were being shipped by riverboat across Caddo Lake when a storm sank the boat. Workers dove into the lake to recover the furniture. Enslaved craftsmen and Holcombe family members restored each piece and the chairs graced the parlor of Holcombe's new home, Wyalucing Plantation.

Enslaved workers built the two-story brick Wyalucing Plantation home on a hilltop in Marshall between 1848 and 1850. According to family tradition, the name “Wyalucing” is American Indian in origin and means “home of the friendless.” In the Lenape language of the Delaware people who lived in the area, it means “home of the Warrior.”

Holcombe died at Wyalucing at the height of the Civil War in 1864 and was buried in the plantation cemetary. When his widow, Eugenia, passed away in 1873, the plantation was sold outside the family. It was purchased by Harrison County freedman in 1880 and re-christened Bishop College, one of the first African American colleges in Texas.


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Wyalucing Plantation parlor chairs Artifact from Marshall
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