The Kirby-Hill House was built in 1902 by James L. Kirby, older brother and business partner of the more famous John Henry Kirby. The Kirby family established a lumber empire which dominated the economy of this region for almost 100 years.
The Kirby-Hill House Educational Foundation, established in 1992, raised the money locally to purchase the property and restore the home. Inside restoration is planned room-by-room and funding comes from grants, donations, and admissions. In addition, the group also has a series of Murder Mystery Dinner Theaters in the Spring and Fall, Lunch with Lucy by appointment (small catered gatherings) Bed & Breakfast rooms, historical tours, and the home is available to rent, which all raise funds for the restoration of this grand old home.
The house features wrap-around porches with forty-eight columns, four fireplaces, and eight rooms that all open onto the porch through eight-foot, double-sash windows. The most outstanding architectural features include the curved walls and oval grand staircase. Much of the furniture and china is original to the house. The foundation also has many of the pictures, papers, and artifacts belonging to the family dating back to 1832.
On the grounds to the right of the mansion is a state champion Crepe Myrtle tree that is over 100 years old. On the left side of the property is a relocated church building which is the home of the Hardin County Genealogical Society. The Kirby-Hill House is located in Kountze, Texas, next door to the Kountze Public Library, and one block north of the Hardin County Courthouse.