Texas celebrated the 185th anniversary of the Battle of San Jacinto yesterday, as Texans honored those that contributed to the epic 18-minute victory over Santa Anna’s 1,200 Mexican troops that ended the Texas Revolution and gave way to the Republic of Texas. The battle was led, of course, by Texas hero Sam Houston, who at one time resided and worked as an attorney here in Liberty.
Another caveat of local history tied to San Jacinto is the famed architect Alfred C. Finn, who was responsible for the design and completion of the monument in 1939. It turns out that Finn was also responsible for the expansion and remodel design of the old First National Bank of Cleveland eight years prior, in 1931. The bank itself was originally built in 1914.
After Sherry Cook and her family had purchased the building, they began to research the history of the property. The Cleveland Historical Society and museum helped a great deal with the research on the building and pointing the Cook Family in the right direction. They continued their search at the Sam Houston Research Center in Liberty and eventually to the Houston Metropolitan Research Center, where they found a wealth of information on the building and the famed architect.
There they discovered Finn’s original documents and works, which included the old Cleveland Bank and the actual blueprints and other information on the building, giving them confidence in the structure they were hoping to restore to its present form.
“It was a coincidence we named it San Jacinto Professional Building, we named because of the street it was on, San Jacinto Avenue, and we had no idea about the connection to the architect at the time,” Sherry Cook said
Today the bank is the home to several local businesses, in what is called the San Jacinto Professional Building, which is located aptly on North San Jacinto Avenue in Cleveland. They even held a special gathering when they first opened on San Jacinto Day.
For more information on the building and their services, call Sherry or Lori Cook at 281-593-5802.