Archives:  Building Spotlight


Input your article title here Jefferson Davis Hospital 1101 Elder Street
For years a deserted, building caught the attention of motorists passing on I-45 near downtown. Many undoubtedly were curious about what this once-stately structure had been and, in a city slow to preserve its past, were puzzled that it was still standing. Stories circulated that it was haunted, not only because of its ghostly appearance but also because of the cemetery lying beneath it. Finally, in 2004, Jefferson Davis Hospital was rescued by Avenue CDC, a Houston non-profit organization dedicated to providing affordable housing. Today the former charity hospital again assumes its regal stance as home to dozens of Houstonians.
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Input your article title here Star Engraving Company Building

In 1909 a landscape architect from Cambridge, Massachusetts, was hired by the City of Houston to create a plan for expanding parkland while developing orderly traffic arteries. A component of the plan was to utilize green space along the city’s numerous bayous and to eventually construct scenic parkways along the streams. Although this concept was never adopted as a city-wide planning tool, the City purchased property along Buffalo Bayou and in 1925 construction started on a winding roadway along the bayou that would connect downtown with a new residential community named River Oaks.
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Anna Stabe Kerstings Building (Londale Hotel) Anna Stabe Kerstings Building (Londale Hotel), 417 San Jacinto Street
The Anna Stabe Kerstings Building has stood at the intersection of San Jacinto and Prairie for more than a century. Although the average person passing by probably knows little, if anything, about the building, it has a long interesting history. One noteworthy tidbit is that the Kerstings Building has operated as a boarding house or hotel since it was built in 1904, making it the city’s longest operating hostelry building on its original site.
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Scientific Barbershop: City Hall of the Fifth Ward Scientific Barbershop: City Hall of the Fifth Ward
The name conjures images of a 1950s-style sci-fi movie, but Scientific Barbershop is an elegantly old-fashioned, gentleman’s hair emporium specializing in the “science” of barbering. Founded in 1944 in Houston’s Fifth Ward and established at 4610 Market Street since 1949, Scientific Barbershop was the enterprise of a forward-thinking woman, barber and entrepreneur Willia “Bill” Glenn Scott. Scott and her sister, Nannie Glenn, were the first female barbers in the Fifth Ward. Glenn was also an instructor at Tyler Barber College in Houston, located on Dowling Street, which produced the majority of African-American barbers in the 1930s and 1940s. Scott attended Prairie View A & M and worked for Tyler Barber College’s owner, H. P. Morgan, for whom she traveled across Texas opening barber colleges. At Scientific Barbershop, Scott employed both male and female barbers. The shop remains in her family and is owned and operated by her daughter, Bernadette Presley.
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City of Houston, Planning & Development Dept. - HAHC
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Email: HoustonPreservation@houstontx.gov