Mother Neff State Park

Texas Park & Wildlife
Moody, TX

Structural Assessment of Rock Tabernacle

WJE was engaged by the Historic Sites and Structures Program, State Parks Division, Texas Parks & Wildlife Development to perform an investigation of the Rock Tabernacle to assess its current structural condition and safety. WJE also provided recommendations regarding access by Park staff and visitors until stabilization of the structure could be completed.


Originally called the Recreational Pavilion, the Rock Tabernacle structure at Mother Neff State Park was designed by the Texas State Parks Board in cooperation with the National Parks Service in Coryell County, Texas. The Civilian Conservation Corps constructed this open-air structure in 1937.

The Rock Tabernacle was previously assessed by a different firm that developed a plan for stabilization and reroofing of the structure. However, a log jam in the adjacent Leon River and two years of intermittent flooding caused the repairs to be put on hold.


WJE performed a structural assessment of the Rock Tabernacle to determine whether the issues identified by the previous firm were still present and if any new issues had arisen. Several concerns were noted by WJE. These included mildew on the masonry, roof deflection, pavement and slab settlement, minor slab faulting, cracking of the pavement, wood decay, twisting of wood in the elevated portion of the structure, cracks in the wood, and deflection of the wood, among others.

WJE opined that repair and restoration of the structure was possible. However, due to the deterioration of the structure, it was recommended that the Rock Tabernacle remain closed off to the public until the slated stabilization work was completed. WJE made specific recommendations to the client to mitigate the potentially accelerating deterioration of the structure.