Stephen F. Austin State University

The Washington Square Project

Project Background

The Center for Regional Heritage Research (CRHR) at Stephen F. Austin State University (SFASU) was selected as the base of operations for the Washington Square Project due to its' capacity to provide the necessary workspace, technology needs, software requirements, and expertise within a wide range of multidisciplinary fields. Through the CRHR, the Washington Square Project is able to access numerous university-based resources within the Department of Social and Cultural Analysis, the Public History Program, the Columbia Regional Geospatial Service Center, the Anthropology and Archaeology Laboratory, and the East Texas Research Center.

The Washington Square Project will produce a piece of usable history with which Nacogdoches citizens may interact, and will serve as a site-specific archive of available resources for the district. The resulting web page will provide users with the ability to click on a structure within the Washington Square National Register District, producing photography and documentation of the architecture. By synthesizing the available information, making it available to the public, and encouraging public interaction, we can increase public awareness regarding local historical assets within the Nacogdoches community.

The data collected for this project will be made available via the CRHR's website. If you become aware of further resources (documents/photographs/oral histories/videos) for this project, please let us know in an email to the Principal Investigator, Robert Z. Selden Jr. at to discuss the incorporation of those assets into the project's web page.

Photos from The Washington Square Project

Washington Square National Register District

Washington Square was nominated for the National Register of Historic Places in 1992, based upon the 1986 Historic Sites Survey conducted in Nacogdoches, Texas. This project will synthesize that information, and absorb it into the current project.

This research will produce an active catalog of the structures within the Washington Square National Register District, their geography in relation to one another, and a description of the architecture. Combined with aerial photography, digital elevation models, and collected global positioning system (GPS) points, this will produce an interactive web page with which users can interact.

Washington Square Archeology

Washington Square has been the focus of numerous archeological projects, and stands as a model to the community for the incorporation of archeology within plans for future development. The Nacogdoches Independent School District has developed a close working relationship with archaeologists at SFASU, helping to mitigate the sensitive archaeological assets of Washington Square by adhering to the Antiquities Code of Texas. The Texas Historical Commission serves as the arbiter of the Antiquities Code of Texas, and protects archeological sites within the state.

Under the provisions of the Antiquities Code of Texas, Washington Square was designated as a State Archeological Landmark in 1992.


A draft of the final product will be posted on a semi-regular basis as the data becomes available, in order to familiarize the public with this method of interaction. A goal of December 10, 2011 has been set for the completion of this project, after which the completed web page will be presented for public consumption.