Robert E. Howard Home Restored by Project Pride
Project Pride is a community organization in Cross Plains, Texas that bought
the Howard House in 1989 and has since restored it to a museum in Robert E.
Howard’s memory. Howard, one of the world’s most highly acclaimed writers of
fantasy and adventure, pounded out stories of many genres in the little white
house on the western edge of Cross Plains, where he lived with his parents from
1919 until his death in 1936. Although he created many other characters, Conan
the Barbarian has probably become Howard’s most well known conquering hero.
Thanks to financial support from local people, fans around the world and from
the estate of the late Alla Ray Morris, who had inherited the rights to REH’s
works, the house has been restored and furnished to reflect the mood and spirit
of the environment of the home as closely as possible. A few items that were
used by the Howard’s have been returned to the house to be permanently displayed
in their original positions. Other period pieces from the 1920’s and 1930’s
have been donated or loaned by local citizens.
Robert’s room is especially well done, showing the crowded conditions of the
little room that had been created for him by enclosing part of a porch. It is
easy to imagine his big frame hunched over the old Underwood typewriter as he
hammered out stories that sold for a penny a word in the pulps of that time.
Each June, Project Pride, the Robert E. Howard United Press Association and the Robert E. Howard Foundation sponsor a two-day celebration of the writings of this native son. Ruth Stein probably identified the reason for the continuing success of this gathering when she wrote in a Literary Tour Guide to the U.S. (Wm. Morrow & Co. 1979), “Standing in a house where one’s favorite author lived, or seeing the desk at which he or she wrote, or visiting the haunts the writer once knew, establishes a certain kinship with him.”
Visitors come from around the world to learn more about Howard as they enjoy special guests from the broad spectrum of Howard’s writings, panel discussions, tours of the Museum and local environs, special postal cancellations and many other sidebar activities.
The Cross Plains Library graciously extends their hours of operation for the week-end so visitors may view their Howard holdings. Copies of original typescripts may be purchased and the local newspaper is available for study on microfilm at the Library.
Throughout the rest of the year, people continue to visit Cross Plains to see where Robert Howard lived and wrote. We have welcomed these guests as they share with us their Howard collections, their own publications, their enthusiasm and their gifts that continue to support our efforts in commemorating Howard.
Project Pride is proud of this man whose constantly growing fame has brought
worldwide attention to Cross Plains. It was our dream to restore the Howard home and to make it possible for other dreamers to walk here. Although the restoration has been completed and the house has been listed in the National Register of Historic Places since 1994, it takes continual maintenance to keep the house in its restored condition.
Since being formed as a non-profit organization in 1986 to promote the Cross Plains area and to preserve and document the history of Cross Plains, Project Pride has concentrated on the vision of bringing the world to our doorstep. We welcome anyone interested in the purposes of Project Pride to join our organization. Membership is $3.00 per year for individuals or $5.00 for a family. Membership fees and other donations may be mailed to: Project Pride, PO Box 534, nbsp;Cross Plains, TX 76443.