The TCM Sister House

The Burkland-Frisk House

The Burkland-Frisk House

The following has been reprinted by permission of Don Martin of Martin & Salinas Public Affairs, Inc.

The Burkland-Frisk house was originally located on Quick Hill, in far south Williamson County just west of where the current La Frontera Project now sits.  Originally it was one of three houses all within walking distance of each other and located on or near Quick Hill Road (old CR 172).  However, at the time the house was moved to Georgetown, Texas, in 1999, it had been moved one time already.  It was painted yellow and located in Round Rock on the north side of FM 1325 just west of IH-35, about where the current Barnes & Nobles now sits.  It was moved to Georgetown to make way for construction of portions of the La Frontera development and SH 45.

This house was built between 1908 and 1909 at the same approximate time that the two other neighboring homes were built.  One of the other two houses was nearly an identical twin to this house.  The twin house to the Burklund-Frisk, located at the top of Quick Hill, was used later for the filming of the cult movie "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre."  The builder of both houses was reportedly Carl Carlson.

The Burkland-Frisk house is thought to be a "pattern book" house which was ordered from a catalogue and assembled from plans and a package of materials usually brought by wagon from a local lumber company rather than constructed of raw lumber materials.  At least one of the two identical houses has lumber that indicates it came from Nalle Lumber Company in Austin.

The house was built by Carl Carlson for Leonard Ruben Frisk, an early settler in Williamson County.  The Frisk family lived in the house and had five daughters (none of whom are currently still living).

Frisk sold the house to Irene and Ruben Johnson who lived in it until 1943.  At that time the house was returned to the Frisk family by a relative, Tony Burklund, who re-acquired it and who lived in the house with his family until 1969.  Tony Burklund is the father of Weldon Burklund who was interviewed during the gathering of this information.

The house was bought by the Hepplefingler family from Waco, and then later was sold to the McNeil Land Company.  At some point it was moved to it's most recent location north of FM 1325  where many people can recall seeing the "yellow house" as they passed by in traffic.  The final owner at that location was Peter Ballura who sold the house as part of the ROW acquisition for State Highway 45.

The two other nearby houses were built at the same time for another historic Williamson County family, the Sellstroms, who were also relatives of the Frisk's.  One of these two houses later burned after having sat vacant for many years.  The other house is an identical twin to the Burklund-Frisk house, and went on to serve as the location for filming of the cult movie "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre," a fictional movie that is not based on a true story or location.

According to Raymond Sellstrom, the first Sellstrom house was built in 1908-1909, and he was born in the house in 1909.  It was located close to the "Chainsaw" house, and fronted on Quick Hill Road (old CR 172).  It was sold in 1961 at the time of the construction of the new CR172 and was abandoned and later burned down.  The second house was built in 1909 and was owned by an uncle, Robert Sellstrom.  Betty Hester of Round Rock, daughter of Robert Sellstrom, lived in the house while growing up and still resides in the Round Rock area today.  This house was the one used in the filming of "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre," a fictional cult movie.

At the time the project site was bought by the developers of La Frontera, the "Chainsaw" house was moved to Kingsland Texas and painstakingly restored by Dennis and Barbara Thomas.  The house now sits as a restaurant addition to the historic Antlers Hotel in Kingsland owned by the Thomas' and operated as a popular Bed & Breakfast situated on the Colorado River.  The restaurant is called The Old Town Grill.

Both houses that were moved were carefully cut into seven sections in order to move the houses across area roads and highways, and then re-assembled at their new locations.  Moving of both houses was overseen by the same moving company and the same master carpenter who restored the Antlers Hotel - Anthony Mayfield.  The Burkland-Frisk house was restored locally in Georgetown and is located in San Gabriel Village.

The house is a example of the late Victorian-era Queen Anne-style cottage with its gingerbread trim and other architectural embellishments, large front porch, front upper balcony, complex high-peaked roof, fish-scale upper siding, and chamfered (cut-off) corners.  Like many homes of its day it had 12' high ceilings, transom windows, angular rooms, and extensive wood moldings, "bullseye" trim, and wood paneling.  Some of the chamgered corners were later removed and the walls extended to the corners.  These canges can be seen today, for example, in the wood flooring at the corner in the farthest right front room.  There is also a unique curved entry hall which was very fashionable in it's time.  Unfortunately the house has no other historical significance as it has been moved several times since it's original construction.

There are a number of homes in the Georgetown area which reportedly feature some of the same architectural details as the Burklund-Frish House.  Two such houses are located at 1304 and 1312 Elm.  A.W. Selure, a Frenchman, was the architect for a number of architecturally significant homes in Georgetown and Round Rock in that era of similar design.  Selure, however, was closely linked ot the A.E. Belford Lumber Company who sold pattern book homes of his design.  It is possible that these homes were designed by Selure and the lumber acquired from the Belford Lumber Company, suplemented with lumber from the Nalle Lumber Company.

 


Mr. Martin of Martin & Salinas Public Affairs, Inc., sent me this invitation for an informal walk through of the completely renovated home.

Mr. Martin of Martin & Salinas Public Affairs, Inc., sent me a short article that was recently published in the Williamson County Statesman about this house and its famous sister house.  You can read that HERE.

A very good article on the house appeared in the Williamson County Sun newspaper, January 20th, 2002.
Click HERE to download the first scan of the article (206K).
Click HERE to download the second scan of the article (185K).


The pictures below were taken on 08/25/01.  Click on a thumbnail for a larger version with comments.

 

     
     
     
     
     
     

 

The following are several pictures I took of the house while it was disassembled and waiting to be towed to its new location to be reassembled.  This was the original site where the house was on 1325 in Round Rock, Texas for almost 100 years.  They are in no particular order.

 

     
     
     
     

Fan Fotos of The TCM Sister House

Matt Phillips visited the sister house while it was still sitting off of highway 1325 in Round Rock, circa 1999.

                       

                       

                       

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2012 Tim Harden timh@texaschainsawmassacre.net