Lincoln Center

by Christa Lollis

Since 2005 the Lincoln center building has been abandoned but some local East Texans weren't going to let that happen. "Once the building was purchased and we proposed to the city that we refurbish it they proposed a plan to us and we said ok, we'll do what you want to get it done and we'll go ahead and get this building taken care of. We'll refurbish it so it can be a part of the community so it will look nice," Victor Travis, the building owner explained. Now Travis owns the building that was built by James Butler in the 60's. This new group of East Texans is hoping they can bring the beauty of it back to the community. "He built it because the Lincoln center on Loening was being closed down and out of sympathy for the black community that they were losing their black theater. He built this but he also built it so that there would be a business for the black community," Dickie Dixon, a local historian told KTRE. Shops, restaurants and the famous theater were all an integral part of the neighborhood and that is what preservers hope it will soon be again. "I would like to see it become an African American historical center, culture center and a community center. That would be a wonderful thing to do simply because it is one of the last buildings that we have that has historical significance to the black community," Travis said. Today the group was putting a fence around the building to secure it so it would be up the cities standards. Because they say losing it would be like losing a piece of history. Travis explained, "Well because our history is very important without knowing where you came from you don't know where you're going." They hope the building will be on it's way in the next few months.