Pioneer Log Cabin Chimney
Photograph - Photography
Mrs Lee's Cabin is found on the grounds of Mrs. Lee's Daffodil Gardens. This is a shot my husband, David, took of the side of the cabin showcasing the old rock chimney. It is one of the authentic old time replicas you can find in this East Texas attraction visited by thousands every year. It is filled with old time staples and decorations found in years past. You may not have heard of it, but it has been visited by people far and wide, from many states and even countries.
Mrs. Lee's Daffodil Gardens are on a 816-acre tract of land that is drastically transformed every February and March into fields of gold and white when the daffodils begin to bloom. Millions of golden daffodils and white ones, too, are scattered over approximately 28 acres. Dogwood trees and many other flowering trees can also be seen. Visitors travel along a four-mile trail that meanders around two lakes, between wooded valleys, and around a replica pioneer log cabin.
I grew up as a child, going to church with Mrs. Helen Lee and always knew that she loved God and nature. She and her husband, T.W. Lee, found their way to East Texas during the great oil boom and made money and a great name for themselves here. Mr. Lee established the town's first newspaper and radio station. He died in 1954 leaving his wife as his only namesake. They had bought a portion of land just outside the city of Gladewater, Texas and she loved it so much. She bought the adjacent pieces of property until she had a ranch that amassed over 1,000 acres. She took this raw land and transformed it into a budding paradise; converting the gravel pits into a 5-acre lake and a 3-acre pond. Both of these were stocked with bass, perch, and catfish, while surrounded by abundant wildlife of all kinds. Mrs. Lee purchased an entire boxcar load of daffodil bulbs from Holland and they were all planted by approximately 40 workers. The granddaughter of two of those workers still manages the Gardens and property today.
Mrs. Lee had a one room pioneer log cabin replica constructed in 1954. It rests overlooking the 3-acre pond named Lake Josephine, after her mother. This is where she enjoyed spending quiet time with her flowers and nature. Mrs. Lee survived her husband by thirty years and died in July of 1984. At her request the garden was opened to the public in the spring following her death. Dependent on Mother Nature, the Lee Gardens usually open around mid-February when the flowers come into bloom and closes in March when the flowers start to lose their blooms. It also is not open if the road conditions are wet and muddy and possibly not safe for visitors. It is amazing and a honor to have this lovely garden for all to enjoy. It truly carries on a beautiful legacy left by a great lady.
January 15th, 2013
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