Taking root: Families that stayed

Robinson family members, from left, Harry Robinson Jr., Cheryl Robinson, Harry Robinson, JoAnn Robinson, Joan Robinson Sendejas and Henry Robinson. The Robinson family tree has deep roots in Hitchcock, dating back to the late 1800s.


The Robinson family tree has deep roots in Hitchcock, dating back to the late 1800s.

Harry and JoAnn Robinson have lived in Hitchcock all their lives. They’re both the sixth of eight children, and grew up on opposite sides of the railroad tracks.

Their four children, nine grandchildren and three great-grandchildren live nearby, so they don’t plan to uproot anytime soon, said JoAnn Robinson, the family genealogist, who runs the Hitchcock Heritage Museum.

Harry said his grandfather, William Sheldon Robinson, settled in Galveston County in the 1870s.

William built the first family home in Hitchcock about five years before the 1900 Storm and built it again using driftwood left behind by the natural disaster.

The Robinson family later loaned the house to the Navy during World War II to use on the blimp base, he said.

Most members of the Robinson family were ranchers and raised cattle for a living, and Harry was the only politician in the bunch. He was a city commissioner in the 1970s and mayor from 1979 to 1983 and again from 1992 to 1998. He now sits on the Hitchcock Chamber of Commerce board.

Harry and JoAnn are involved in the Good Ole Days Festival.

“Most of our relatives still live in Hitchcock and are involved in church and school,” he said. “But the friends of the family kept us involved, too.”

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