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DIALOGUE Sam’s House With reference to your article, “Sam’s House Becomes Sam’s Cabin” \(TO ing as proof of the blatant inaccuracies of Mr. Curtis Tunnel’s statement as reported in the article: 1.He stated we as architects had not worked with the state historical commission during our planning for the project. Enclosed is a copy of a letter from Mr. Tunnel, then State Archeologist with the Texas Historical Commission, dated May 14, 1979, commending us for our development plan for the Houston Home which in his words was “well conceived, thoroughly researched and professionally presented.” This development proposal, presented to him a full year in advance of our submittal of detailed plans and specifications for construction, contained all of our historical research and architectural investigation as well as an explicit explanation of the recommended restoration philosophy for the house. There should be no doubt that he and his agency had sufficient prior knowledge of both our research and our intended program well in advance of the actual restoration. 2.Mr. Tunnel’s next statement in your article that “submitting the plans after they were finished shut off any opportunity for discussion or cooperation” is misrepresentation at best. Enclosed is evidence clearly indicating that the sixty days notice requirements were met and that the Texas State University System fully complied with the proper state statutes in this matter. If the Texas Historical Commission and the Texas Antiquities Committee are, in Representative Bill Blythe’s own terms “slow” and “don’t really jump in there and carry out their responsibilities in an efficient manner,” that is clearly an internal problem within their agency. It should not be inferred that the architects, the University or the Regents are at any fault when the Texas Historical Commission is apparently unable or unwilling to respond appropriately. Also enclosed is a letter from Mr. Truett Latimer, then Executive Di rector of the Texas Historical Commission, stating that it was the Regent’s option to choose the manner of development for the home. He states that if restoration as proposed by the architects was chosen, the plans and specifications were adequate with “a few minor alterations.” All of the minor alterations he suggests for the plan in a later paragraph were incorporated into the plans without question. With reference to Mr. George Russel, his statements regarding our work and this project continue to be filled with emotion and rhetoric, devoid of substance and fact. He continues to cry out that no one is listening to him, all the while failing to realize that he offers so little substance for anyone to hear. David Hoffman, AIA, 920 Con gress Ave., Austin, Tx. 78701. The author’s reply. I appreciate David Hoffman’s thoughtful response to the article ” `Sam’s House’ Becomes Sam’s Cabin.” Regarding the copies of letters that he sent us and his comments about them: The letter from Curtis Tunnell of the Texas Historical Commission was written in 1979. Mr. Hoffman drew the renovation plans in 1980. Tunnell’s letter referred to the study of and general development plan for the Sam Houston house, not to the architectural drawings and specific plans. Nevertheless, Mr. Hoffman is correct when he says that the Texas Historical Commission had a copy of his restoration philosophy in 1979. The Texas Historical Commission could have begun to question that philosophy much sooner than it did. When I spoke with Tunnell, he said that the architects followed the law in submitting their architectural drawings to the Texas Historical Commission 60 days before construction began. But they should have “included us in the planning process,” he said. The letter from Truett Latimer, former executive director of the Texas Historical Commission, did say that the regents were responsible for deciding how to restore the house. But in the same letter, Latimer also directed the regents to consider Terry Jordan’s report on the planned restoration \(Jordan gave it a months of exhaustive research, examining all available documents and comparative structures in East Texas.” No more research took place. Nina Butts `Leaven’ Enclosed is my renewal subscription fee for the coming year. I have been a subscriber and reader for about twelve years. Although I usually renew my subscription without offering comment, I feel compelled to say that I have found the issues of the past few months to be most interesting and stimulating. I hope you will continue to include pieces such as McMurtry’s “Ever a Bridegroom” \(Texas Observer, October readers’ responses in Dialogue, many of us are stimulated by discussions of writing and literature, Texan or otherwise. In fact, it was every bit as interesting to read the responses to McMurtry’s criticism as it was to read the article itself! I also applaud the “Books and The Culture” section of the December 4, 1981 issue which offered an enlightening, inspiring piece on Elroy Bode. The Observer has published good literature, analysis and criticism in the past and I hope you will continue to do so. Texas and national politics may be your beat, but please do not ignore the response generated by a thoughtful, if controversial, piece of literary criticism. To accompany the sometimes drab political news, these articles and dialogues provide a crucial leaven for the “journal of free voices.” . Roger Ray, 1106 Bucknell, Arlington, Tx. 76012. A Torch I should have subscribed long ago. You’ve always carried the torch for truth in this sometimes weird, sometimes terrible state. But now the times are such as to terrify me. We must keep journals like yours going. I see fascism down the road. Eleanor Porter, 3213 Ave. Q, Galveston, Tx. 77550. THE TEXAS OBSERVER 27