A History of The Home
Campus in 1957 Campus Today
The plan for expressing compassion for homeless children was conceived in the fall of 1951, as a group of Christians of the Broadway church of Christ in Lubbock Texas began to dream about establishing an innovative program for caring for children. The first child came into care at the newly dedicated Children’s Home of Lubbock on April 18, 1954.
The Children’s Home has enjoyed an unusual degree of stability in its 60 year history. Its three administrators have each dedicated a long tenure to the Home and its children. The campus has been built and maintained with the generous gifts of friends and is totally debt-free.
Since the Home’s beginning, over 6,000 children have been served by its various programs. The Home has continued to be on the forefront of progressive and creative methods of meeting the needs of neglected and abused children.
In the Beginning . . .
In the fall of 1951, Dr. M. Norvel Young, who was minister of the Broadway church of Christ, and Fred Pinkston, elder of that church, along with their wives Helen and Roma made plans for a relaxing evening. They decided to travel together to Odessa to a football game and as they journeyed, the conversation turned to the question of Broadway’s next move in trying to better serve the Lord. Several things were discussed, but the conversation kept returning to the service of needy and homeless children. The group envisioned a new type of care for children, a home composed of several individual cottages, each self-contained, with its own mother and daddy and children in a family atmosphere.
The idea was presented to the elders of the Broadway church and to its people, and the time was ripe to go forward in this work for the Lord. Late in 1952 a delegation composed of Dr. Young, J. Lawrence Green, and others visited with Mrs. Ida Collins about purchasing some land for the new children’s home. According to Lawrence Green, she asked how much land they needed. They responded with the suggestion that the home would need 35-40 acres. Mrs. Collins said, “That won’t be enough. You’ll need room for the boys and girls to run, play and work. I’ll give you 200 acres.” In Lawrence Green’s words, “That was half of what she owned.”
In the Collins Garden at the entrance to the Home’s campus, a plaque pays tribute to Mrs. Collins for her generous gift. The wording on the plaque notes that Mrs. Collins was three years old when her parents, Mr. and Mrs. W. G. Nairn acquired the land before 1900. Home for the Nairns was a half dugout.
On October 18, 1953, ground was broken for the first cottage in a bare, plowed cotton field seven miles east of Lubbock. Mrs. Collins turned the first spade of dirt, and each person who wished also participated in the ceremony. As the event was happening in Lubbock, Texas, the wind was blowing and some of every spade of dirt was blown right back in the faces of the people, but no one seemed to mind. The Children’s Home of Lubbock was underway!
On April 18, 1954, the first cottage had been completed and was open for the public to tour. Almost 4,000 people came that day to view the cottage and to bring their well wishes. At some time during the afternoon a preacher came from Kermit, Texas with Dwain Jones, a seven-year-old boy who would become the first child to live in The Children’s Home. The chaotic circumstances of the afternoon were not optimal for settling a child into a new and unfamiliar place, but the little boy was undaunted . . . when he became tired, he went into one of the bedrooms and curled up on one of the brand-new beds for a nap.
John B. White came from the University church in Austin to be the Founding Superintendent of The Children’s Home of Lubbock. He and his wife Vera served the Home faithfully until her death in 1975; Brother White worked until his death in 1992. Floyd Stumbo came to the Home as an assistant to Brother White in 1957 and served as President from 1970 to 1995, when he “retired” to head The Children’s Home Foundation. Lynn R. Harms currently serves as administrator of the Home.
Today a visionary conversation between two couples traveling to a distant town for a football game has been fulfilled in The Children’s Home of Lubbock. Over fifty years since that first little boy came to live at the very first cottage, more than 5,000 children have found a home where a little three year old girl lived and played. Indeed it has become as Ida Collins dreamed — a place for children to run, play and work.
But the past is but prologue to an even more exciting future. As good people have responded for over fifty years, our God will open new doors of opportunity for the tomorrows of the next fifty years and beyond.
Norvel and Helen Young and Fred and Roma Pinkston dream of a children's home and encourage the Broadway church of Christ to move that direction.
Ida Collins deeded the land for the home, May 29th.
John White arrives in Lubbock on September 19th.
Ground is broken for the first cottage, October 18th.
First child arrives during the dedication of the first cottage, April 18th.
Minton Cottage groundbreaking, August 5th.
Foster Cottage is opened on July 30th.
Inez Baucum begins work as the first social worker on September 12th.
Groundbreaking for Hardwick Cottage on July 15th.
Floyd Stumbo begins work on October 15th.
Farm program begun.
Tatum Youth Center opened on November 10th.
Murray Cottage opened on June 8th.
Nairn Administration Building groundbreaking on January 7th.
Reagan Cottage groundbreaking on July 1st.
Baker Cottage dedicated on April 20th.
John White "retires". Floyd Stumbo becomes President on September 6th.
The Boverie Pool opened in July.
Hill Cottage opened on January 12th.
Lamesa Cottage groundbreaking on April 6th.
Groundbreaking for the Crump Social Work Center on March 22nd.
The Pioneer Park church gives the Coronado Children's Home to The Children's Home of Lubbock. It is named the Pioneer Park Cottage.
The Mabee Gym is dedicated February 23rd.
The Tatum Youth Center is rededicated as the Tatum Skills Center on July 31st. The Rogers Library is dedicated.
The Home begins its therapeutic group care program.
Texas Boys Ranch becomes an affiliate of the Home on August 1st.
Lynn R. Harms becomes the 3rd President of the Home, October 1st.
Mason Cottage is dedicated as an assessment center/emergency shelter on September 21st.
The Heath-Roberson Life Skills Center is dedicated on October 2nd.
Reagan Cottage is rededicated as the Family Care Cottage on August 25th.
Pioneer Park Cottage becomes home to the Young Mother Program.
Funds are given to renovate Scarborough Cottage as the Jeffrey Moritz Administration Center.
The Home celebrates its 50th Anniversary on April 18th.
The Moritz Administarion Center is dedicated on June 21st.
Dedication of the Geneva Griffin Center for Children's Services on March 28th.
Floyd Stumbo's 50th anniversary of employment is celebrated on October 15th.
The Stumbo Pavillion is built.
In April, The Home celebrates it's 750th adoption since it's beginning in 1954.
Ribbon cutting for the Counseling Center on September 18.
60 Years of Servicing Children celebrated on April 18.