Poised serenely on a gentle hill overlooking South Main Street, the Howard-Dickinson House stands as a testament to more than 130 years of Rusk County hospitality and history. The Howard-Dickinson House was the first brick home built in the county. Two brothers, James and David P. Howard, settlers from Virginia, erected the house in 1855. The brothers were brick masons and carpenters and were involved in building many of the buildings in downtown Henderson. Sam Houston was a frequent visitor to the house. The first president of the Republic of Texas was also a cousin to Martha Ann (Mrs. Dave) Howard. The Texas statesman’s campaign trunk is displayed in the house. Used as a boarding house during the East Texas Oil Boom years of the 1930’s, the house was vacated and sat empty by the 1950’s.
In 1967, the Howard-Dickinson House was restored by the Rusk County Heritage Association and opened to the public as a living museum and meeting place for special events. The Howard-Dickinson House was presented a Texas Historical Medallion in 1968 and was recorded as a Texas Historic Landmark.