If the TJR trunk is at least 160 years old, it could have belonged to Thomas J. Rusk, an early political figure in Texas who died in Nacogdoches in 1857.
Researchers at Stephen F. Austin State University are tracing the roots of a cowhide trunk that could have belonged to Thomas J. Rusk, an early political and military figure in Texas. The trunk’s lid bears the initials TJR. It’s one item in a massive collection at Millard’s Crossing Historic Village. Executive director David Young said the trunk was purchased by Nacogdoches native Lera Millard Thomas who was a compulsive collector and an early preservationist. She created a living history village on her family’s land called Millard’s Crossing in the 1970s.