SLHF NEWS                                           NOVEMBER/DECEMBER  2012  
On September 23, 2012, organizers of the Epic Grand Opening Gala of Constellation Field proudly presented checks of $50,000.00 each to two local nonprofit organizations: The Sugar Land Heritage Foundation (SLHF) and Deacon's Dugout Foundation (DDF).
The Epic Grand Opening, held Saturday, April 14, 2012, was the first official event at Constellation Field, the home of the Sugar Land Skeeters.  The event offered attendees a preview of the ballpark and an opportunity for the SLHF and DDF to raise funds for their organizations.
The Sugar Land Heritage Foundation is planning a museum to be located on the Imperial Sugar Refinery site, where the public can learn about Sugar Land's rich history.  The newly organized Deacon's Dugout Foundation promotes education  and healthy activities for the culturally, racially, and economically diverse populations of Fort Bend's underserved youth.
Many thanks to the major advertisers around Fort Bend County who raised the funds and to the Executive Committee who created a truly memorable event.  Committee members were Nancy Olson, Gala Chair; Dee Koch, The George Foundation; Regina Morales, City of Sugar Land and Sugar Land Heritage Foundation; Matt O'Brien, President, Sugar Land Skeeters; and Kelly Dunnbier, Premium Services Director, Sugar Land Skeeters.

Have you wondered what's happening in the backroom at the Sugar Land Heritage Foundation?  We're happy to report that a lot of work is happening back there!  Lead Archivist Chris Bohannan and Assistant Archivist Chuck Kelly started cataloging the Foundation's collection of documents, memorabilia, and artifacts this summer.
Private and corporate donors have supplied photographs, documents, maps, video & audio recordings, objects, and all types of local memorabilia for the Foundation's collection.  The first step in making them viewable by the public is to make an inventory, and then log them in the Foundation's archival computer system.  Once that is complete, the focus turns to preservation and conservation.  When the Foundation finds ample exhibition space, large portions of the collection will go on display for public viewing.
Chris and Chuck began with the Foundation's voluminous collection of maps and drawings.  It was largely a practical step to clear working space in the storage room.  With adequate space, teams of volunteers can assist with cataloging items and putting selected samples on display in the Foundation's currently limited exhibition space.
Some of the many interesting items in the collection include railroad maps, town plats, property records from Mayfield Park, Sugar Land High School memorabilia, a whisky glass from the old Sugar Land saloon, and panoramic photographs from the beginning of the 20th century.  The Foundation is eager to put selections of these items on display as soon as feasibly possible so local residents can marvel at our local history.  We also need more space to accommodate future donations from generous benefactors.
A generous donation from  Houston Endowment Inc. is funding this initial curatorial effort, which will continue well into next year.  The Sugar Land Heritage Foundation is very grateful for their support.

Each year, the Sugar Land Heritage Foundation features a treasured historic building or site in Sugar Land.   


This year we are  proud to present The Sugar Land Auditorium.  Since its opening in 1918, it has played an important role in the lives of Sugar Land residents.   


These high-quality brass ornaments come individually packaged in a beautiful gift box which includes a printed card with information about the structure depicted.  


A unique addition to any Christmas tree or holiday display, a Sugar Land Heritage ornament is the perfect gift for family members, friends or clients.  The cost of each limited-edition collectible ornament is just $25. 




Lonnie Green Park was dedicated in memory of the only resident of Sugar Land to die in World War I and is a beautiful green space with a children's playground area at Wood and 1st Street on The Hill.  It was originally located on the plot of land bounded by Main on the west, Wood on the east, 4th Street on the south, and 5th Street on the north. This is the same plot of land that Imperial Sugar Company donated a corner to each of the four churches in Sugar Land - the Baptists, the Methodists, the Presbyterians, and the Roman Catholics. As the need for employee housing increased, Lonnie Green Park was moved to the open land just south of 1st Street.  At the entrance to the playground area, there is a marker:


Lonnie Green Playground.  A Land and Water Conservation Fund Project, Sponsored by: City of Sugar Land, Sugar Land Jaycees, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, Heritage Conservation and Recreation Service, U.S. Department of Interior, March 1, 1979.


There is another marker, just west of the playground area:


In memory of the former students of Sugar Land High School who gave their lives in World War II that future generations might enjoy free education. 


Joe. W. Boston, Jr.

Manuel Carillo

Pete Hernandez

Earl G. (Jack) Hill

Alvin Kadlecek

R. C. Lisenby

Leroy Starr

T. J. Williams

William (Sam) Wright


Sugar Land PTA....No Year is given  


This brought up the question, "Who WAS Lonnie Green?" Bruce Kelly dove right in and wrote a wonderful article that you can read in its entirety in the Ultimate Fort Bend section of the Houston Chronicle on November 8th, and on our website, later this month. 


Here is a VERY condensed version of that article. 



 Lonnie Green - A Brief History


Alonzo Richmond Green, known as Lonnie, was born in Sebastopol, Mississippi, on December 21, 1892, and moved to Sugar Land with his family sometime between 1912 and 1916.  His family lived and worked in Sugar Land, but Lonnie worked independently on a farm near town.


He, along with his parents Albert and Anna and his brother, Lee, and sister, Emma, attended the organizational meeting of the First Presbyterian Church of Sugar Land in 1916.  Lonnie aspired to be a Presbyterian minister and had been accepted into a seminary.  His religious studies were supposed to start the very day he left for Camp Travis in San Antonio for his army induction.


Lonnie Green became a sergeant in the machine gun battalion of the 180th Texas Brigade, part of the 360th Infantry Regiment of the 90th Infantry Division.  He was destined to participate in some of the fiercest fighting of the entire war.


There are no known specific details concerning Lonnie's battle experience, but as a member of the 360th Infantry Regiment, he would have participated in the St. Mihiel Offensive and the Meuse-Argonne Offensive. 


There is no record how and in what battle Lonnie received his wound.  However, we do know he didn't die immediately following his injury.  The exact date in not clear, but shortly before Lonnie died, he had a chance encounter with his brother Lee, who served in the 45th Division.


Lee had served five months in the Machine Gun Company before being transferred to the Motor Supply Train as a truck driver.  Lee was waiting for his truck to be unloaded in France one day when he saw Lonnie going by.  Lonnie had already been wounded.  At the time, neither man considered his wound serious; nevertheless, Lonnie died on November 3, 1918.


Lonnie was buried in France just seven weeks shy of his 26th birthday, with thousands of other young American soldiers at the Meuse-Argonne American Cemetery near Romagne and is listed on the World War I Honor Roll.  His mother, Anna Green, applied to the World War I Mother's Pilgrimage for a trip to France to visit her fallen son's grave.


In 1920, his brother Lee, living with his wife in Sugar Land, worked as a laborer for Imperial Sugar.  By the 1930s, the Green Family had left Sugar Land for the Houston Heights.


Today, Lonnie Green Playground on the Hill in Sugar Land...along the waterway in front of the Sugar Land Auditorium on Lakeview Elementary named in his honor.







The Chautauqua Movement began in New York State as an adult educational movement in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.  It spread across rural American to the small town of Sugar Land.   


In response to the movement, The Sugar Land Auditorium was designed and constructed in 1918, not only to serve the school, but the entire Sugar Land community.  The townspeople held dances and other social events on its tiled rooftop terrace.  Inside they enjoyed various traveling shows and Chautauqua talks.


Come remake history as the Sugar Land Heritage Foundation partners with the Sugar Land Cultural Arts Foundation to revive a noteworthy part of our history - the Sugar Land Chautauqua Talks.  


Chautauqua Talk One


"Sugar, the Essential Building Block of  Sugar Land"


Harvesting sugar cane.

Leon Anhaiser will start our series, answering many of our questions about sugar and Sugar Land.  Learn how the sugar cane plant was discovered and became domesticated for our use; how it came to Sugar Land; how methods of extracting the sugar from the cane evolved over the decades; how the methods of refining sugar were transformed over the years, and the variety of products processed throughout its history.


Leon is uniquely qualified to present this material.  He is a native Sugar Lander (graduate of Sugar Land High School, Class of 1957) with 45 years experience in the sugar industry and is a former Imperial Sugar Vice President of Operations Development.  Leon has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Sugar Engineering from LSU.  He began working as a process engineer and eventually became Imperial's Vice President of Refinery Operations.  He was plant manager at C&H Sugar's liquid sugar facility in Hawaii and served as the Executive Director of Sugar Industry Technologists, Inc, an international organization dedicated to sugar refining, scientific research and sugar processing equipment.


This rare presentation - suitable for adults and school-age children - will be held at no charge in the historic Sugar Land Auditorium, located on the Lakeview Elementary Campus, 226 Lakeview Drive, Sugar Land, on November 13th from 7:00 - 8:30 pm. 



As the holidays approach, remember the great choices we have in our gift shop!


Image of America - Sugar Land  Arcadia Publishing  ($25.00)        117 pages filled with photographs of Sugar Land and the people that are part  of our history.


Fort Bend County Texas, A Pictorial History by Sharon Wallingford  ($40.00)   The story of all the towns that have contributed to the rich history of our county with many photographs as well.


Set of 4 coasters  ($25.00)

Great scenes of old Sugar Land including Char House and Elementary School with original Laura Eldridge Hospital in the background.


For people on the go we have two dark green items with our Heritage Foundation logo     

Travel Mugs  ($7.00)  

       Shopping Bags ($6.00)


Heritage Foundation T-Shirts (Children & Adult Sizes $10.00)   

Great design with picture of "Old Sugar Land" which includes Char House and General Mercantile store. Two colors offered: Beige and Moss Green


Heritage Foundation Caps in beige ($14.00)


For the Collector on your list:


2012 Sugar Land Heritage Collection Ornament ($25.00)

Featuring Sugar Land Auditorium on Lakeview Elementary Campus.  This high-quality brass ornament comes individually packaged in a beautiful gift box which includes a printed card with information about the structure depicted.  


2011 Sugar Land Heritage Collection Ornament ($25.00)     

Featuring Imperial Sugar Company Char House, this high-quality brass ornament comes individually packaged in a beautiful gift box which includes a printed card with information about the structure depicted.


 The Sugar Land Heritage Foundation offers historical presentations at your school or to your group.  One of our volunteers will come to your site with an engaging power point presentation accompanied by personal narration.  The program for children is 30-40 minutes long.  Entitled "Sugar Land: Then and Now", it teaches history by showing what is standing now and what was at that location "back when".  We also have a slightly longer program geared for adults which captures the unique history of Sugar Land.  Please contact  Jane Goodsill at for more information.

To inspire community pride by collecting, preserving, communicating, and celebrating the history of Sugar Land, Texas.

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Sugar Land Heritage Foundation

Bill Benson
Executive Director

Chris Bohannan
Lead Archivist

Chuck Kelly
Assistant Archivist

Board of Directors:

Dennis Parmer                 President     
Shay Shafie             
    Vice President
Regina Morales           
Bettye Anhaiser               Secretary

Bob Brown
Roy Cordes, Jr.
Sharon Ehrenkranz
Carl Favre
Bruce Kelly
Rev. Martin Nicholas
Bill Schwer
Don Smithers
John Whitmore

Farmers' Market
Every Saturday
9:00 - 1:00

Sugar Land Heritage Foundation Museum
Every Saturday
9:00 - 1:00

Docent-led Walks
2nd Saturday of each month at 10:00

$10 for adults
$5 for 12 - 18
Free for under 12