Barrett Station: A Family’s Heritage

Pictured above: Wallace Barrett (2nd generation), Keisha Brown (3rd generation), and Kimberly Brown (4th generation.) Pictured at Barrett Station Settlement in 2006.

By NABJ JSHOP Karmen Brown

Often, families have a token or heirloom that is passed down through generations. 

One particular family is bonded by a community in Harris County, Texas that was founded by their ancestor Harrison Barrett. In 1865, Barrett, who had been enslaved, learned of his freedom — two years after the Emancipation Proclamation — and had a vision of one day finding his relatives and bringing them all together again. 

Harrison’s search for his family was a journey some may describe as “bittersweet.”  Even though he was a free man, he couldn’t celebrate without knowing his family members were all together.  

According to historical research, Harrison envisioned a post-slavery world where he would have a community owned and built by his family. He married longtime friend Annie Jones and together they searched for Barrett’s loved ones.

Eventually, through prayer, trials and tribulations, Harrison was once again reunited with his people.

“God freed us, God brought us back together,” Barrett said, according to the book “Legacies of a Man to Remember, Admire and Honor,” written by his granddaughter Addie Mae Barrett Dixon.

The book was published in 2003. 

Since then, the property known as Barrett Station has been rebuilt twice by many descendants. Harrison and Annie had 12 children. As they became older and transitioned into adulthood, Barrett hosted a traditional gathering where the family would meet and included food as well as fellowship. The tradition known as “homecoming or family reunion” continues today.  

“I admire Harrison,” said Kimberly Brown, fourth generation granddaughter of Harrison Barrett. “Because of him, the Barrett family will always be tied together not just biologically but sentimentally. Every year, we are allowed the opportunity to meet together and fellowship at Barrett Station as him and his children and their families once did. 

“It’s such an intimate experience and every year I look forward to going.” 

Several members of Barrett’s family are buried at Journey’s End Cemetery on the homesite. 

To hear more about the Barrett Station Settlement, go to:


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