Historically Speaking

The history of local citizens, Part I



Greetings Atascosa County! Last week, we traveled to College Station to help my son move some things before he leaves for college. Going to College Station, I guess I don’t have to tell you what college he will be attending. Like the Aggies or not, the college rivalries within the state are entertaining, especially during football season. As we traveled around the college/town, I reflected on the age of this college. I thought of my old Aggie mentor from Poteet. He was the Atascosa County Jail Administrator from 1989-2009. He was the first man to give me an opportunity in the jail back in July 1999, and I still talk to him often.

Honestly, I’ve known both Mr. Bryan & Mrs. Crouch almost my entire life. You see, Mrs. Jean (Lott) Crouch worked with the school and she was an aide in my kindergarten class. She knew me well and still reminds me every time I see her what kind of child I was. Along with working at the school, she assisted at the Crouch Department Store with her husband Bryan Crouch and her motherin law Bertha Louise Crouch. The store was located where the Poteet City Hall now sits (on the southwest corner of 5th St. & Ave H). Their store sold all kinds of clothing, various toys, boots, shoes and hats. Mr. Crouch had the skill for hat shaping.

Mr. Otis N. Crouch (Bryan’s Father) operated the Crouch Store from 1924-1964. His son Bryan operated the Crouch Store from 1962 until it’s closing in 1986. Bryan and his father simultaneously operated the store from 1962-1964.

(Thomas) Bryan Crouch was born in 1928 to Otis and Bertha Louise Crouch at the R.S. Gwines Drugstore Building in downtown Poteet. The drugstore had a small hospital on the second floor that could house about six patients.

Bryan was raised in a small house behind the Crouch Store until 1936 when the family moved to another home near the school in Poteet. Bryan attended school in Poteet until graduation in 1946. Mr. Crouch spoke about his attendance of school in the old three-story red building. The story goes that the building contained a basement and all grades, with the exception of high school, were taught in that building.

Catch us next week where we will finish up the history of two local citizens.

Y’all be safe and healthy, and keep our history alive!

Keep up with us on Facebook, until next time.

MARTIN GONZALES is the Atascosa County Historical Commission Chairman. If you have history to share, you may contact him at 830-480-2741.

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