Local historian and author Jane Hoerster was guest speaker at the May 16 meeting of the Mason Bluebonnet Study Club held at the Richard Eckert Civic Center. The subject explored by the speaker was pre Civil War migration to the area by slave owners. Copies of documents from that time period on display showed that people with black skin were listed on tax forms as personal property with a monetary value shown. Ms. Hoerster also had copies of several bills of sale showing that human beings were bought and sold in the manner of cattle. One copy of a legal court document showed a freed slave petitioning the court to become the property of a man rather than remain free.After the Civil War, a school was built for those freed black skinned people to attend and memories of one student were written to the effect that each relished the chance to learn and went to school daily with joy. The school was consolidated into the Mason School District around 1956.Ms. Hoerster told of a very special baseball team made up of young black men called the Mason Allstars who played all over the area, even as far away as San Antonio.The author found that many of the freed slaves left the area and migrated north after the war ended. Some became soldiers. Some decendants remain in the area today according to her research.Ms. Hoerster’s book entitled A Pictorial History of Mason County, 1877 - 1958 can be found at Benjies or at the Mason County Library.A business session followed the conclusion of the speaker’s presentation. Minutes of last month’s meeting were read and approved and a treasurer’s report was filed. A Federation report was given by Tommie Luckenbach stating the importance of recycling items that make their way into landfills and are there hundreds of years later. She advised that Mason has a very good recycling plant and encouraged members to use it.Thank you letters from recipients of funding to attend Hugh O’Brien Leadership training (HOBE) were read from Bianca Martinez and Gideon Gonzales.The current club scholarship of $500 has been awarded to Paden Hemphill.Ideas for study next year were suggested by members present. They will be considered and a decision will be made at next month’s meeting which ones to include on the agenda.A planning session will be held at 11:00 a.m. on June 20 at the home of Sabin Nelson. Attendees are asked to bring a salad to share. Tanya Lamoreaux served refreshments to guests Joan Lindley, Pam Scott, Elaine Stewart, and Jane Hoerster. Also to members Mary Carlman, Mary Hemphill, Tommie Luckenbach, Betty Meyer, Mary Ellen Merkel, and Sabin Nelson.The Mason Bluebonnet Study Club is a member of the Alamo District of Texas Federation of Women’s Clubs which is a part of the General Federation of Women’s Clubs, an international service organization.