Austin History Center

D. C. Freeman House Records

An Inventory to the Collection

Overview of the Collection

Creator: Barentine, J. P., III
Title: D. C. Freeman House Records
Inclusive Dates: 1857-2001
Bulk Dates: 1978-1982
Abstract: Legal and financial records, letters, short historical narratives and photographic negatives documenting the ownership, tenancy, and city planning issues concerning the house at 610 East 3rd Street, and the 600 block of East 3rd Street, in Austin, Texas. Among the tenants purported to have occupied 610 E. 3rd are William Sydney Porter.
Identification: AR.2001.001
Quantity: .2 linear feet (1 box)
Location: Archives stacks
Language: The records are in English.
Repository: Austin History Center, Austin Public Library, 810 Guadalupe, PO BOX 2287, Austin, TX 78768

Creator Note

The Austin History Center acquired the D. C. Freeman House records by donation from Joseph Powell "Bix" Barentine III, a Texas Lawyer and the last owner of the historic 19th century home at 610 East 3rd Street in Austin, Texas. The collection is named after D.C. Freeman, who acquired the property from the State of Texas in 1853, and is thus the earliest known owner of the home at 610 East 3rd Street. Various residents occupied building and adjacent properties on the lot encompassing the 600 block of East 3rd over the course of the property's long history. Among those tenants were Andrew A. Agnew, a prominent Austin printer, William Sydney Porter, known by his nom-de-plume O. Henry, and Peter G. Roach, the legal guardian of Porter's wife Athol Esters. Barentine acquired the home in 1979 from Roger S. Hanks and William B. Houston. Shortly thereafter, the City of Austin required Barentine to begin repairing the structure and grounds. In the early 1980s, Austin's Department of Parks and Recreation took up correspondence with the owners and residents of the 600 block regarding plans for construction of a bike path. Barentine was the last resident at 610 East 3rd, which burnt in September of 1981.

Scope and Contents

The D. C. Freeman House records consist of legal and financial documents, letters, short historical narratives and photographic negatives documenting the ownership, tenancy, and city planning issues concerning the house at 610 East 3rd St., and the 600 block of East 3rd St., in Austin, Texas (1857-2001). The bulk of the records, which stem from the 1978-82, are financial records of and letters to Joseph Powell Barentine III concerning the renovation and ownership of the Freeman (D.C.) House, as well as the City of Austin's plans for park development on sections of Barentine's property.


The D. C. Freeman House records consist of one box with 11 numbered folders. As the records are more an artificial collection than an organic fond, they had no original order upon accession. The folders are grouped into 5 series according to document type and in some cases subject. Folders and items are arranged in chronological order wherever possible. Item level description was chosen as appropriate on account of the small number of items in the collection.


Restrictions on Access

Open to all users.

Restrictions on Use

The Austin History Center (AHC) is the owner of the physical materials in the AHC collections and makes available reproductions for research, publication, and other uses. Written permission must be obtained from the AHC before any publication use. The AHC does not necessarily hold copyright to all of the materials in the collections. In some cases, permission for use may require seeking additional authorization from the copyright owners. Consult repository for more details.

Index Terms

This record series is indexed under the following controlled access subject terms.
Agnew, Andrew A.
Barentine, Joseph Powell, III.
Bohn, Walter.
Ehrler, Leonard, Jr.
Fletcher, Mabel L. Walker.
Hanks, Roger S.
Houston, William B.
Jackson, John.
McClellan, Carole.
Meyer, K.R.
Henry, O., 1862-1910.
Roach, Peter G.
Roach-Hofer, Effie V.
Wright, Ben.
Capitol City Abstract Co.
City of Austin--Building Department.
Gracy Title Company.
Herrera Ornamental Iron Works.
Q.S. Demolishing Company
Travis County (Tex.).
Austin (Tex.).
600 East 3rd Street, Austin (Tex.).
600 1/2 East 3rd Street, Austin (Tex.).
602 East 3rd Street, Austin (Tex.).
604 East 3rd Street, Austin (Tex.).
606 East 3rd Street, Austin (Tex.).
608 East 3rd Street, Austin (Tex.).
610 East 3rd Street, Austin (Tex.).
612 East 3rd Street, Austin (Tex.).
305 Red River, Austin (Tex.).
City Planning--Texas--Austin.
Historic buildings--Texas--Austin.
Parks and Recreation--Texas--Austin.
Document Types:
Legal documents.
Financial documents.
Narrative reports.
Photocopied cartographic materials.
Photographic materials.

Related Material

House Building Files - 3rd Street, East 600-608

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

D. C. Freeman House records (AR.2001.001). Austin History Center, Austin Public Library, Texas.

Acquisition Information

Donor #: DO/1950/58

Donation Date: 2001 April 16 and 2001 May 2.

Processing Information

Processing Information: Initial Inventory and Preliminary Processing By/Date: Rebecca Rich-Wulfmeyer, May 2001; Final Processing and Finding Aid By/Date: Stephen Naron, February 22, 2002; Encoded By: Lauren Waelder, 2014 May.

Detailed Description of the Collection

I. Legal Documents, 1857-1989

Box Folder
1 1 Abstract of title, 1857-1943
2 Abstract of title, 1943-1959
3 Warranty deed, 1978-1989
Barentine's legal documents concerning titles and warranty deed.

II. City Planning and Property Management, 1978-1983

Box Folder
1 4 Demolition, 1978-1983
Letters, contracts documenting property management and Austin city planning.
5 Revitalization, 1979-1983
Letters, photocopied city zoning maps documenting Austin revitalization planning.
6 Revitalization, 1979-1980

III. Financial Documents, 1982

Box Folder
1 7 Tax receipts, 1982

IV. Historical Narratives, 1892-1982

Box Folder
1 8 History of ownership, 1892-2002
Chronological sketch of owners/tenants of 600 East 3rd Street property.
9 History of ownership II, 1982
Chronological sketch of owners of 603 East 3rd Street.
10 Tenancy Block 35, 1982-2002
Chronological sketch of owners of 600 block of East 3rd Street property.

V. Photographic Materials, 1979

Box Folder
1 11 Negatives and contact sheet, 1979