Before Rice built a tunnel system, the early Institute campus endured floods and wet, soggy terrain. The above photo from the William Ward Watkin architectural records shows how bad it could be on campus.
This postcard from the James Lockhart Autry Family papers provides a great image of how the Texas Company advertised petroleum and other products at the Texas State Fair in 1908. I particularly like the phrase “illuminating oils.”
Since today is the last day of classes and many Rice seniors are simultaneously relieved and filled with a bit of dread about their future, let’s look back at senior life circa 1949. This Senior Banquet program has a brief, funny history of the class of ’49, as well as the night’s menu, which includes roast turkey with dressing and salad du chef.
Fondren Library is happy to announce the digitization of 940 objects from the Weber-Staub-Briscoe Architectural Collection.
Founded in the late 1920′s by Herman Weber as Weber Iron Works, Weber Iron & Wire Company was a fabricator of high-quality custom architectural details in metal and other materials, and became instrumental in creating original designs and duplications of fine nineteenth-century ornamental ironwork and metalwork for the projects of many of Houston’s leading architects and builders, most notably John F. Staub and Birdsall P. Briscoe. In order to produce the exceptional metalwork exactly as specified by the designs of the architects, scale and full-sized drawings of the designs were created. Most pieces were created by a detailed process including the formation of a replica of the design in clay which was cast in aluminum and placed on a pattern board used to make the final castings in iron, bronze, or aluminum. The body of work produced by Weber enriched Houston’s heritage for the greater part of the 20th century, and continues to be admired in many of Houston’s architectural treasures.
The digitized portion of the collection includes pattern boards (design molds) and metal castings of architectural details such as stair rails, fencing, and other metalwork ornaments manufactured by Weber Iron & Wire Company from the 1930′s to the 1990′s. The larger collection also includes photographs, architectural drawings, reference books, and tools used in the manufacturing process, along with invoices from the company from 1933 to 1987.
- Full archive online of the Weber-Staub-Briscoe Architectural Collection, 1909-2010 is available at http://scholarship.rice.edu/handle/1911/68494
- Finding aid to the Weber-Staub-Briscoe Architectural Collection, 1909-2010, MS 586, is available at https://library.rice.edu/collections/WRC/finding-aids/manuscripts/0586
The original materials which these digitized versions represent are held by Rice University, Fondren Library, Woodson Research Center. The materials are available for research by appointment.
The first 22 selections from the James Lockhart Autry family papers are now online. Digitized items include family portraits, documents, and memorabilia. Documents include the invitation and dedication program for Autry House. Dedicated in 1921, Autry House was the first social space for Rice students before the Rice Memorial Center was built.
This digitized material forms part of a larger physical collection accessible at Fondren Library, which includes business papers, correspondence, photographs and memorabilia related to the James Lockhart Autry family of Texas (1875-present) and of North Carolina (1832), Tennessee (1824-1840) and Mississippi (1840-1875). These materials show the life style of a family who moved into Texas and played an important role in developing both the social and economic framework of Houston. Among the business papers are correspondence and legal briefs from the terms Autry served as general counsel to the Texas Company, president of Fidelity Trust Company, and vice-president and general counsel of the American Republics Corporation. Finding aid to the collection is available at: http://library.rice.edu/collections/WRC/finding-aids/manuscripts/0003
Additional items will be digitized and available online throughout 2013.
Fondren Library is happy to announce the Rice Thresher, student newspaper since 1916, is now available online in a full-text searchable PDF format for the years 1916-2000.
The Thresher archive is available as issue-level PDF files in Rice’s institutional repository at http://scholarship.rice.edu/handle/1911/64041. In this way, the digital Thresher can be searched with many other Rice resources and will be reliably preserved. These issue-level files maintain the look and feel of the print, including the layout, the advertisements and the experience of browsing the pages.
It is also available in the Portal to Texas History, hosted by the University of North Texas, at http://texashistory.unt.edu/explore/collections/THRSH/. Being present in the Portal to Texas History allows the Thresher to be searched in the company of a treasure trove of other Texas heritage resources.
Issues from the year 2000-current day are available directly from the Thresher online at www.ricethresher.org, presented as a Table of Contents with links to individual articles.
Fondren Library is working towards microfilming and digitizing the print issues from 2000-current day, so that they will also be available as issue-level PDF files later in 2013.
We hope you will enjoy this lens on life at Rice over the years!
Want to see more about Rice online? Visit University Archives and Rice history!