In late 1985, when the Eanes Old Rock Schoolhouse was being considered for demolition to make way for another unit of brick classrooms on the lower Eanes Elementary School Campus, a group of long-time residents of the community went before the Eanes Independent School Trustees and requested that the 1937 old rock school building be saved from demolition. Their premise was that the old school building represented the history of the Eanes community and had served for almost a third of a century as the focus of the community; as the first school in the log cabin and the old frame building had done for the sixty-four years before.
The School Board agreed with the request and designated the old rock building as a History Center. In 1986 the Eanes History Center was organized to preserve history related to the development of the area known as the Eanes Community located in Western Travis County, Texas. The Center, housed in the the Old Rock School House, is nestled in the middle of the Eanes Elementary School campus. The Eanes school is heralded as being the oldest continuously run school in the state of Texas. It has been operating on the same site since 1874. The Center has enjoyed a long and cooperative relationship within the Eanes Independent School District as a learning center, museum and research library.
Don Rogers, EISD Superintendent, and Bill Wheless, Director of EISD Support Services for the school system, became staunch supporters and oversaw the upgrading of the classroom so it could be used for the already growing collection of "pioneer artifacts" that local families were donating - tools and equipment long used on the old ranches, and old school books, photographs, and papers from former students of earlier school years. Many local residents lent support through donations of funds, time, and efforts.
From it's inception, the Eanes History Center has been a resource for an education program as part of the curriculum of the elementary schools, manned entirely by volunteers. The program has consisted of the highly-praised program "Walking Back in Time" which provided a visit to the Center by all of the district's third grade classes and the parents' story-telling program "Eanes Family Trip to Texas" in all the second grade classes. There have been history contests for the middle school and high school students, and presentations of local history programs for various Eanes community groups.
In addition, the Center has played a role in the erection of historical markers and plaques in the Eanes area. The research which established the history for the markers is in the Center's library along with materials that bring the history of the area up to the present. The genealogy of some of the early families has been accumulated and is available in the files. The library houses several collections of materials related to the development of the area and has received grants and donations to process and file these and other materials.Every year more than 1200 students and residents of the community visit the center and participate in the Center's programs and use its library.
Through its record of service, the Eanes History Center has received commendations and recognition from Travis County Commissioner's Court, the Texas Education Agency, the Texas Historical Commisssion, and several State Governors, as well as from the West Lake Hills and the Rollingwood City Councils and the Eanes School District. The Eanes History Center is available for visits and for the use of the Archival Library by the school and community. Visitors and prospective volunteers are always welcome.