The Bookshelf, The Parlor, The Young Texas Reader, and the Monthly

The Texas Bookshelf is different from the The Texas Parlor, . The Texas Parlor carries "general" bookish information and non-book information and even different Texana news and notes of use to the bibliographically challenged and other nosey folks intersted in historical, literary, and cultural observations. Will's Texana Monthly may carry material from either blog, but extends itself beyond those, especially for longer compilations or treatments. The Monthly, the Bookshelf and the Parlor are all companions. So, is the Young Texas Reader which specialized on books and such things for the youngest to the teenagers.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Houston Heights - Anne Sloan

 Houston Heights   Houston Heights.  By Anne Sloan and the Houston Heights Association.  Charleston, SC:  Arcadia Publishing, 2009. Many photos.  Paperback. 128 pages, Images of America  Series, $21.99  ISBN 9780738571188

Anne Sloan has done a wonderful job taking this turn-of-the-century independent town on the edge of Houston onto the photo-filled pages.  Sloan knows her material first hand – she's written history and even a novel set in the Heights.  The photos are well captioned.  The Heights is knows for its desire and accomplished ability to maintain its historical heritage.  Sloan used a creative method of collecting vintage photos; she and the Association put the word out to folks to bring their old photos to the old Firehouse for scanning and story-telling.  It was so successful they had to repeat the affair.

The contents proceeds as: Community, Schools, Churches, Homes, Businesses, People and Clubs, Diversions, and Around Town.  The town was started by O.M. Carter and D.D. Cooley, father of famed Houston heart surgeon.  The main street photos display the upper-class homes of large, ornate Victorian and Queen Anne styles of the day.  But the citizens beyond Heights Boulevard were mostly middle-class and their old photos show it, and picket fences were de riguer.  The town had a full life on its own despite the 15 minute trolley ride to Houston. 

All sorts of trades and stores and offices sprinkled through the neighborhood.  Many backyards had chickens, cows, and fruit trees.  Many backyards had chickens, cows, and fruit trees. 

One of the most interesting photos is of young Elma Pielop on Yale Street holding the bridle of a 1930's horse named Tex.  Apparently Tex was the "City Horse" kept for the use of residents.  Other folks may want to follow the story of Hortense Ward because SHE served as chief justice of the Texas Supreme Court in 1925; see her behind the bench on page 101.


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