Building Community.

The Columbus Historical Preservation Trust is dedicated to the preservation of the history and culture of Columbus, TX. It is our unique heritage that makes Columbus a special place to live. CHPT strives to keep that history alive.


Save Our Opera House

Located in the heart of Columbus, Texas, the R.E. Stafford Opera House is considered by many to be the crown jewel of Colorado County. For many Columbus residents, past and present, the Opera House holds very special memories. Memories of weddings, proms, reunions, Magnolia Belle presentations, and other significant events that brought friends, family, and community members together. The Opera House is an important part of not only Columbus’ history but the history of its residents.

Over the past 30 years, several repairs to the building have been made. However, significant repairs and improvements to the aging building must now be made for guests to continue to fully utilize the space. Without these repairs, CHPT will not be able to rent the venue and will lose crucial revenue to continue the upkeep of the Opera House. Community members and businesses are invited to save the Opera House by joining the Stafford Opera House Legacy Giving Society.



Seasons of Colorado County

To celebrate everything that makes Colorado County a special place to live, Columbus Historical Preservation Trust endeavors to create a one-of-a-kind, photographic celebration of our community. Seasons of Colorado County will be a stunning coffee table book featuring photographs highlighting all areas of Colorado County through the changing of the seasons. Community members are encouraged to submit personal photographs for publication consideration as well as become underwriters of the project to help offset the cost of printing the photo book.



Historic Properties

Stafford Opera House

1886 Stafford Opera House

The 1886 Stafford Opera House was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1973. When it was originally built in 1886 by cattleman R. E. Stafford, the R. E. Stafford Bank and Opera House housed a bank and dry goods store on the first floor and theater venue on the second floor. The Stafford Opera House is the largest flat-floored opera house in Texas and is the only flat-floored opera house still in existence in the state.

Alley Log Cabin

Alley Log Cabin and Antique Tool Museum

The Alley Log Cabin is a two-room oak log cabin and was built in 1836 by Abraham “Abram” and Nancy Alley. According to family history, the cabin was sided with pine lumber
floated by raft from a large sawmill in Bastrop in the early 1850s. The cabin stood on its original site from 1836 until 1976 when it was moved to Columbus and restored. The Antique Tool Museum opened in 1996. The small framed building that sits behind the log cabin was originally a store that sold school supplies and snacks to school children.

Santa Claus Museum

Santa Claus Museum

The Santa Claus Museum was created in memory of Mrs. Mary Elizabeth Hopkins, an avid collector of Santas of every shape and size. The museum opened in 1990 and is a one-of-a-kind destination. It houses three major collections featuring almost 3,000 Santas including figurines, music boxes, dolls, dishes, ornaments, artwork, needlework, and photos from all over the world. The Santa Claus Museum brings joy to all who seek the Christmas Spirit.

Dilue Rose Harris House Museum

Dilue Rose Harris House Museum

Dilue Rose is best known for her book Reminiscences, in which she tells of her family’s close acquaintance with the several leaders of the Texas Revolution and recounts her journey during the Runaway Scrape. Dilue married Ira Harris in 1839 and they moved to Columbus in 1845. They built their modest “tabby” home in 1858 and lived in it with their nine children. In 1988-1989 the Dilue Rose Harris House was converted into a museum. It is furnished with early Victorian walnut and Texas pine pieces, many belonging to families from the Columbus area.


Upcoming Events

Save Our Opera House Town Hall Meeting #2

Join CHPT for a second town hall meeting to learn exciting updates regarding the Save Our Opera House fundraising campaign, including total donations received, a status update on building repairs, and community events planned for 2024. This Town Hall meeting is generously sponsored by RCR Properties. Event attendees will enjoy catering from Lamberto's Brandon House...

Find out more »
Stafford Opera House – Buddy Rau Room, 425 Spring Street
Columbus, TX 78934 United States
+ Google Map

Membership Information

Individual Member

$ 50
  • Vote at Annual Meeting
  • Membership pin
  • 10% off Stafford Opera House rentals (includes the Buddy Rau Room)

Couple Membership

$ 75
  • Vote at Annual Meeting
  • Two membership pins
  • 10% off Stafford Opera House rentals (includes the Buddy Rau Room)


$ 250
  • Vote at Annual Meeting
  • Membership pin
  • 15% off Stafford Opera House rentals (includes the Buddy Rau Room)

Patron/Corporate Member

$ 500
  • Vote at Annual Meeting
  • Two membership pins
  • 10% off event tickets
  • 20% off Stafford Opera House rentals (includes the Buddy Rau Room)

Rent the Stafford Opera House

Host your event at the beautiful 1886 Stafford Opera House. With two spaces available, we can accommodate events large or small.



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