Friday, February 20, 2009

A Plea for Hardwood Bottomland

Normally, I wouldn't consider pasting a press release here, but I have to make an exception for Russell Graves' new project. A couple years ago, Russell and I worked together on an article about proposed Marvin Nichols Reservoir. Regular readers of this blog know how I feel about allowing water hustlers to destroy East Texas's remaining hardwood bottomland so that clueless suburbanites can water their Bermuda grass lawns.

So please check this out and lend your support:

New Multimedia Project Highlights the Decline of the Bois D'Arc Creek Watershed
February 19, 2009
For Immediate Release
Fannin County, Texas - On the eve of the construction of the Lower Bois d'Arc reservoir, professional photographer and filmmaker Russell Graves and his partner/brother William Graves embark on an ambitious new film/multimedia project documenting the history and loss of the Bois d'Arc Creek hardwood bottomlands. The not-yet-titled film is currently in pre-production with filming slated to begin in March and wrapping up in early June.
"Our family first moved to Fannin County in 1979," says WIlliam. "We lived in a small farmhouse south of Bonham along Bois d'Arc Creek and I spent lots of time trapping and exploring the creek while we lived there." Soon thereafter the family moved north of Dodd City near the Hilger Community just a short distance from the creek and the family continued cultivating their outdoor lifestyle through ranching, logging, hunting, and fishing. William, who is a retired 21-year US Army veteran, settled less than a half a mile from his parent's home.
"In many ways, my whole outdoor heritage and ethic was shaped by the things I learned roaming the bottomlands along the creek," says Russell, who for the past 16 years, has lived in Childress, Texas. "My brother, my dad, and I spent countless hours exploring our patch of the woods and in reality, the lessons I learned really helped me launch a successful writing and photography career."
When complete, the film will explore themes of habitat loss, the history of the creek, and the water needs of a burgeoning North Texas population - all told from a personal, first person perspective.
"I hope when this film is complete people will appreciate, for perpetuities sake, the importance of the creek to the cultural and natural heritage of Fannin County," says Russell.
To see a prelude to the film, check out
For more information or to schedule an interview, contact Russell Graves at or 806.280.8007


stevea said...

I saw in our paper where at the Fannin County Commissioners court this week, the subject of Ralph Hall lake came up. A resident requested the court rescind its endorsement of the lake.

He gave a very good presentation from what I hear. The audience applauded and he even got a positive response from one of the commissioners.

No action was taken because none was scheduled, but the general feeling is now that the lake would never hold enough water for the NTMWD and the promise of nice lakeshore properties is an empty one.

He asked instead for an enforcement of HB803 to make the municipalities down your way conserve water.

He got some very good points out in the open.

It's not the first time these things have been said, but the overall sentiment that dealing with NTWMD is one-sided and we're going to lose far more than we gain up here is getting stronger.

Henry Chappell said...

Steve, you're absolutely right about folks in my neck of the woods needing to cut way down on water consumption. NTMWD and our neighbors down in Dallas are the most profligate water wasters in the state. I hope that folks up your way and over in Fannin County will start putting up a fierce fight. The whole "lakeshore property" business is one big scam.

Russell Graves said...

What is so disingenuous about the lower Bois d'Arc project is that they are condemning 16,000 acres of private property for the lake proper and the dam in being built with eye-shot upstream of 18,000 acres of federal land.