by Clifton Sorrell III On the eve of the Civil War, an advertisement appeared in the Texas Almanac announcing the sale of five enslaved people at the Stringer’s Hotel. “Negroes For Sale––I will offer for sale, in the city of Austin, before the Stringer’s Hotel, on the 1st day of January next, to the highest […]
By Toyin Falola (UT History faculty come from all over the world. Here are their stories.) This Spotlight, this City In my space and time of growth, The long metallic snake of screeching hisses And novel magical magnetic movement Became a muse of songs and fantasies Making the urge for voyage ineluctable And from a tender […]
Edward Shore revisits the history of the Sanctuary Movement in Austin and the legacy of Casa Marianella, an emergency shelter for refugees and asylum seekers in East Austin. Since 1986, Casa has sheltered more than six thousand refugees, assisting many to secure housing, jobs, language classes, and support. The article appeals to UT historians to get involved in defending Austin’s refugee and immigrant community.
In late October 1939 a photographer from the Bureau of Identification spent the day among both warm and chilled beef carcasses, shrouded sides of pork, and racks of washed and dried offal, documenting the daily activities of the Austin Municipal Abattoir.
Do you love Texas history? The Texas State Historical Association, which makes Texas history readily accessible through its Digital Gateway to Texas History, now offers a huge, new, terrific series of readings in the Handbook of African American Texas.
You wouldn’t think much of the limestone walls hanging on for dear life as you walked along Bluff Springs to get to the grocery store or the bus stop. Not least because they are set back about thirty feet from the road and concealed by trees. I first heard something about the walls and the Sneed mansion they once supported while walking along the Onion Creek greenbelt in South Austin.
As Austin considers building a new electric light rail system—streetcars, really—it is worth looking back to the city’s first streetcar era. For fifty years, from 1891 until 1940, Austin had an extensive network of electric streetcar lines, running from Hyde Park in the north to Travis Heights in the south, and from Lake Austin in the west to the heart of East Austin.
If you cross the Colorado River at Redbud Trail and look upstream toward Tom Miller Dam, there amid the tumbled rocks you can still see the wreck of Austin’s dream. In 1890, the citizens of Austin voted overwhelmingly to put themselves deeply in debt to build a dam, in hopes that the prospect of cheap waterpower would lure industrialists who would line the riverbanks with cotton mills.
Fred Wong grew up in San Antonio and in 1936 married Rose Chin from Chelsea, Massachusetts. They moved to Austin in 1938 and opened New China Food Market at 714 Red River.
Austin’s moonlight towers have long been a distinctive part of the city’s landscape, their lights casting a gentle glow on the streets 150 feet below. Though Austin’s fifteen surviving towers are now the last of their kind, this form of street lighting was once common across the United States. Many cities erected tower lights in the 1880s and 1890s and Austin’s system was modeled closely on Detroit’s, then the most extensive in the world.