The George Ranch Historical Park

I took a personal photo-walk yesterday afternoon at the George Ranch Historical Park in Richmond, TX. According to the folks that work there the ranch had its beginning more than 180 years ago when the first pioneers came to a bend in the Brazos River and settled as part of Stephen F. Austin’s first colony. This whole area was part of northern Mexico then and settlers came for the inexpensive and sometimes free parcels of land that were available.

The story has it that this is where Henry and Nancy Jones planted an oak tree on the site that was to become their home. Well, that old oak is still there and its an impressive site to see.

180 Year Old Oak at the George Ranch

The Old Oak
Copyright © 2008 Jeff Lynch Photography
Shot taken with a Canon 40D , 17-40mm f/4 L at 17mm, f/11, 1/60th sec at ISO 200 on SanDisk digital film.

The ranch has a colorful history and was passed down from mother to daughter from the early 1820’s until 1971. Today, the 23,000 acre ranch is managed by the George Foundation and the Fort Bend Museum Association and is visited by more than 80,000 folks each year including more than 35,000 school children from the surrounding area. This includes my four daughters, each of whom has visited the ranch in the past ten years.

Back in 1977 the Davis House, a beautiful 1890’s Victorian mansion originally built in Richmond, was moved to the ranch where it stands proudly today. The Davis House includes the original greenhouse and grape arbor, as well as the servants quarters and carriage house. What a sight this house makes on a hot summer afternoon. You can click on this image for a high resolution version which really shows the incredible detail in this Victorian home.

The Davis House at the George Ranch Historical Park

The Davis House in Summer
Copyright © 2008 Jeff Lynch Photography
Shot taken with a Canon 40D , 17-40mm f/4 L at 17mm, f/16, 1/80th sec at ISO 200 using a circular-polarizing filter. Recorded on SanDisk digital film.

Every once in a while you really get lucky. I took these two shots hand-held in bright sunlight and never in my wildest dreams did I think they would turn out this sharp. And to answer your next question. No, I did not post process this as an “HDR” (High Dynamic Range) image. All post processing was done in Adobe Lightroom 2 using the “Clarity” and “Sharpening” settings I wrote about in my last post.