Houston waterways online exhibit & archive available now

Navigating Buffalo Bayou in Early Days, undated engraving

Navigating Buffalo Bayou in Early Days, undated engraving

Buffalo Bayou, the waterway destined to become a centerpiece in the Port of Houston’s development, was seen as an essential link between the interior of Texas, the sea, and the rest of the world. And, it was the first home to the Houston Yacht Club. Both organizations—the Port and the Club—grew together on the Bayou, moved in similar geographic directions, and have each gone on to prove their local, regional, national and international importance.  From Allen’s Landing during Houston’s earliest days as a city to Harrisburg and Galveston Bay, Buffalo Bayou has been a part of Houstonians’ recreational and business ventures.

The Houston Yacht Club and the Port of Houston both began to take real shape in the late 1890s, and these archival materials, newly available online, reveal this rich connection.  Along with materials from Rice University’s Fondren Library, and the Houston Metropolitan Research Center at the Houston Public Library, these images and papers  tell the story of Houston’s development along its waterways for both business and pleasure.  Primary source material and vivid images of the past now available online allow researchers to uncover the story firsthand.

The exhibit and online archival material was made possible through a grant funded by the Texas State Library and Archives Commission (TSLAC) and the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS).  The project is a collaboration between Rice University’s Fondren Library, Houston Public Library’s Houston Metropolitan Research Center and the Houston Yacht Club.

Exhibit highlighting a portion of the waterways archives
Full archive online of Rice & Houston Yacht Club materials

Full archive online of Houston Metropolitan Research Center materials


The original materials which these digitized versions represent are held by:

Questions about the project?
Marie Wise, Houston Metropolitan Research Center, Marie.Wise@houstontx.gov
Amanda Focke, Rice University, afocke@rice.edu

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