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PRESERVATION HOUSTON’S 2018 GOOD BRICK TOUR

Festival Season Brings Celebrations of Heritage, Culture and Even the Great Pumpkin
By Susie Tommaney

All five locations on the fifth annual Good Brick Tour will bopen for guided tours from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, October 27 and Sunday, October 28. Information is available at www.preservationhouston.org/goodbricktour .

Advance tickets are available for $25 per person through midnight Thursday, October 25, and may be purchased online at www.preservationhouston.org/goodbricktour .

Tickets will available for $30 per person at each tour location during the tour weekend. All major credit cards will be accepted.

Tickets provide one admission to each location on tour and may be used both days of the tour. Tickets are not refundable.

You may begin the Good Brick Tour at any location and proceed in any order you choose. The complimentary Houston House & Home guide will be available at each tour location.

Street parking is available at all tour locations. Please observe posted parking regulations.
Restrooms are not available at any tour locations.

• Please wear flat or soft-soled shoes and be prepared to climb stairs.

• Interior photography and videos, including photos and videos taken using mobile phones, are not permitted at any tour location.

For additional information, e-mail contact@preservationhouston.org or call 713-510-3990 during regular business hours Monday through Friday.

Thanks to Our Sponsors

Neoclassical Sponsors:
Greenwood King Properties
Smith Warren and Associates
Houston House & Home Magazine

Tudor Sponsors:
Circa Real Estate
Jay Monroe & Katherine Warren, Martha Turner, Sotheby’s International Realty
Houston Public Media

Queen Anne Sponsors:
Jordan R. Baucus
Angela Bishop
Claire & Jeff Cranberry
Heights Clock Tower, LLC
Lynn & Ty Kelly
Sherwin-Williams

Craftsman Sponsors:
Kalinda L. Campbell
Ogletree Deakins

Preservation Houston is funded in part by grants from the City of Houston through Houston Arts Alliance.

 

Welcome

Dear Friends,

Welcome to Preservation Houston’s fifth annual Good Brick Tour. Preservation Houston began presenting Good Brick Awards in 1979 to recognize exceptional historic preservation efforts and the people who make them happen. The tour was created in response to many requests for an inside look at these award-winning historic properties. We are pleased to offer you the opportunity to visit five outstanding projects on October 27 and 28.

Our deep appreciation goes to the owners of these exceptional properties for restoring their homes and buildings to high standards and opening them for the benefit of Preservation Houston. This year we are showcasing properties from the 1890s through the 1950s in neighborhoods across Houston. These are not museums, but functioning historic buildings and family homes that are making significant contributions to their communities and our city.

We also want to thank our many hard-working volunteers, led by our dedicated Good Brick Tour co-chairs Kate McCormick and Cheryl Joseph, as well as the enthusiastic location chairs, docents and Preservation Houston board members who help make this event possible. 

We are very grateful to our sponsors for their generous support of Preservation Houston. We are especially pleased to have Houston House & Home return as our exclusive print media partner and thank Susie Tommaney and the magazine’s staff for creating and publishing the 2018 Good Brick Tour guide.

Most of all, we would like to thank you for attending our fifth Good Brick Tour and for supporting Preservation Houston through your interest and involvement. You are ultimately our best advocates. After the tour, tell your friends and neighbors about the projects you’ve seen, talk about the importance of local landmarks and historic districts, and let our public officials know that you care about preserving our shared heritage. 

If you are not yet a member, please join Preservation Houston by visiting preservationhouston.org/join.

Thank you, again, for your support. Enjoy the tour.

Sincerely,

Deborah Keyser                      David Bush
President                                 Executive Director

 

4. 67 Tiel Way
River Oaks

BECOMING ONE WITH NATURE

MacKie and Kamrath Designed Mid-century Treasure is Creatively Restored
By Sam Byrd • Photos by Mark Scheyer

In 2004, Lynn and Ty Kelly were looking to purchase a home for themselves and their two children. Having lived in Southampton and near Rice University, they never imagined moving into the River Oaks area. However, once they found a modest home that promised 1950s charm and was also nestled close to Buffalo Bayou, they couldn't resist. Just one challenge stood between them and happiness: they wanted to restore the home to its original beauty and reverse the updates made by previous owners.

“I think preservation is important. We could have had a beautiful newly constructed house, but there is something about having the roots of the street and it grew from that,” Lynn Kelly says.

Designed by MacKie and Kamrath, acolytes of Frank Lloyd Wright's architectural aesthetic, the spacious abode originally was built with the intention of entwining nature and man. Instead of fighting against the slope of the land and horticulture, the home was built to coexist with them. Major rooms are organized around a rear terrace lawn. The master bedroom, a later addition, became a glass pavilion in the garden, embodying the organic concept of living with nature that was central to the domestic architecture.

“It’s like we have a private little park back here. It’s so ironic because we’re one block away from busy Kirby,” Kelly says.

Despite the proximity to bustling Houston, the home brings the outside to the inside and embodies the symbiotic relationship of man and the outside world. The front-facing garage door is made of redwood. The roofline of the house is low and side gabled. Inside the house, natural wood abounds amongst a plethora of windows to capture sunlight. The house almost melts into the landscape, making it more of an accompaniment than construction.

“I think our house is kind of a throwback to a chapter of what Houston was and is and could be. It’s all in one house. The challenge with preservation is to be a little more creative, and it adds a little texture,” she says.

The Kellys faced major restoration projects including refurbishing the brick interior, which was painted by a former tenant. They hired Reagan Miller to plan the renovation and expansion of their home. The house originally was built for two adults, but the Kellys needed space for their two children. Miller brought about a plan that kept the original character and intent of the architects’ design, but also met the modern needs of a family.

Upon request, Miller designed an addition to the house in the rear that incorporated the brick and redwood and added a second chimney similar to MacKie and Kamrath's signature design of the original chimney. The portion of the two-story addition that is visible from the front of the property is recessed toward the rear of the house, leaving the original structure intact but seamlessly incorporating the architects’ design features of extended eaves, corner windows and use of dark-stained redwood as materials for siding and soffits.

Miller also was able to accomplish this feat while managing to expand the home's footprint by a mere three feet.

The Kelly family acquired the home to ensure its preservation. They restored the home to its original surfaces and finishes. Their street at one time featured seven homes designed by MacKie and Kamrath; that number becomes instantly impressive knowing the area contains only 32 lots.

Their efforts to restore the home earned accolades from the City of Houston. The house is recognized as a designated landmark, making it the second on their street to achieve that status. The Kellys also earned a nod from Preservation Houston with a Good Brick Award in 2012 for the preservation, restoration and enhancement of Houston's architectural and cultural heritage.

The house will be open as part of Preservation Houston’s Good Brick Tour of award-winning historic properties. The tour will take place on Saturday and Sunday, October 27 and 28, from noon to 5 p.m.
“If it inspires one person to take a second look at saving something instead of tearing it down, then that’s why we did it. We opened it up to the public. We opened ourselves up to the world, and maybe it will give someone an idea. I want to do my little piece to promote preservation,” Kelly says.

 

RESOURCES

ARCHITECTS
Reagan | Andre Architecture
Reagan Miller
André De Jean
713-520-7180
611 West 22nd
www.reaganandre.com

INTERIOR
Montgomery Design Studio
713-520-1818
3701 Kirby Drive, Suite 820

CONTRACTOR
The Southampton Group
713-528-0264
1832 Bissonnet
www.thesouthamptongroup.com

ADDITIONAL 2018 WINNERS

Claire & Jeff Granberry
For restoring the Ewart H. Lightfoot House (ca. 1925) in the Audubon Place Historic District

Chas Haynes
For repurposing one of Houston’s first Gulf service stations as Retrospect Coffee Bar in Midtown

Angela Bishop
For restoring the Ferdinand G. Schoellkopf House (1892) in the Old Sixth Ward Historic District

RE:VIVE Development
For redeveloping an Art Deco commercial building (ca. 1929) in the Heights

Genevieve Withers
For restoring the Minnie & Joseph Blazek House (1909) in the Heights West Historic District

Kip Platt / Provident Realty Group
For redeveloping the Texas Company Building (1915, 1936, 1959) in downtown Houston as The Star apartments

Development Services Group, Inc.
For restoring the Melrose Building (1952) in downtown Houston as Le Méridien Houston Downtown

Ben Koush and Houston Mod
For the book Constructing Houston’s Future: The Architecture of Arthur Evan Jones & Lloyd Morgan Jones

THE MARTHA PETERSON AWARD
Delaney Harris-Finch, Anna Mod and Architecture Center Houston
For the exhibit and catalog Houston: Uncommon Modern

THE PRESERVATION HOUSTON PRESIDENT’S AWARD
Bob Eury
For his visionary dedication to downtown revitalization

OTHER HOMES ON THE GOOD BRICKS TOUR

1. Heights Textile Mill (1894)
611 West 22nd Street
Houston Heights
2005 and 2016
Good Brick Awards

The Heights Textile Mill was constructed in 1894 as a mattress factory for A.R. Morey & Co. in what was then the independent city of Houston Heights. Six years later, the building became the Oriental Textile Mill, which produced filtering fabric for pressing cottonseed into cottonseed oil. The mill complex was expanded several times in the 1920s. After Oriental Textile went out of business, the property was used for a variety of industrial purposes, but was eventually left vacant.

New owners renovated and repurposed the deteriorated, water-damaged complex over several years. The building now contains 60,000 square feet of distinctive studio offices and retail space. Remnants of the building’s industrial past have been preserved throughout the historic textile mill. The original Seth Thomas clock has been restored and still keeps time in the tower, which also contains a unique bi-level apartment.
The complex was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1983 and became a designated City of Houston Landmark in 2007.

Preservation Houston recognized the owners with Good Brick Awards in 2005 and 2016 for their successful efforts to bring new life to a neglected landmark.

 

2. Sunset Heights Bungalow (1921)
934 Louise Street
Sunset Heights
2015 Good Brick Award

Sunset Realty Company built this bungalow in 1921 after buying the site from the Pinehurst Development Company. Ownership changed through the decades, but the house remained largely untouched. When new owners set out to rehabilitate the home in 2013, most of the classic design elements were still in place. Before the renovation began, the house was moved eight feet to the west and the driveway was widened to accommodate modern cars.

Great care was taken to preserve the home’s integrity. The original floor plan is still evident in the finished house, and the restored door hardware still uses the historic skeleton key. A one-story addition at the back of the house created more living space, but is not visible from the street. The biggest accomplishment was restoring the two-story garage and apartment, which had to be lifted onto a new slab foundation.
The current owner is ensuring that the home’s historic character remains intact while incorporating his personal style and family history through unique furniture pieces and artwork.

Preservation Houston recognized the bungalow’s thoughtful renovation and addition with a 2015 Good Brick Award.

 
3. Ferdinand G. Schoellkopf House (1892)
2119 Lubbock Street
Old Sixth Ward Historic District
2018 Good Brick Award

Ferdinand Schoellfkopf, a German immigrant carpenter, built this house in the Folk Victorian style. It is typical of small houses constructed in working-class neighborhoods throughout Houston in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The house was divided into a duplex in the early 20th century.

When the current owner purchased the property in 2016, the house had suffered from decades of neglect. The foundation had buckled and pulled the exterior walls inward, and original detailing had disappeared. During the 14-month restoration, the collapsing front porch was reconstructed to its historic appearance based on interviews with longtime neighbors, and all the historic windows and doors were restored.

Evidence uncovered during the renovation allowed walls, windows and doors to be returned to their original locations as the house was being converted back to a single-family residence. A major discovery revealed a trap door in the ceiling and the ghost outline of the original staircase, which was reconstructed with reclaimed 19th-century materials.

Preservation Houston presented the owner with a 2018 Good Brick Award for the dramatic transformation of a decaying eyesore into a neighborhood asset.

 

4. 67 Tiel Way
River Oaks
See Home Feature Above

 

5. Ewart H. Lightfoot House (1921)
3702 Audubon Place
Audubon Place Historic District
2018 Good Brick Award

Houston builder Ewart H. Lightfoot constructed this comfortable bungalow as his family’s home, and the property has remained with his descendants ever since. The house was a one-story bungalow until Lightfoot added the large, second-story room that gives the building its distinctive appearance. Otherwise, the house has not been substantially changed in more than 90 years.

Lightfoot was incredibly inventive and added many unique features to the house. He patented and installed an intercom system, an automated system that opened and closed the windows and an electric mailbox that rang when mail was delivered. The most striking feature is a massive stone fireplace constructed of rock that Lightfoot collected along the Houston Ship Channel.

The project has maintained the home’s comfortable, lived-in feel with family furniture and mementos in place. Original fixtures were refurbished throughout the house; even the distinctive pink color scheme on the exterior has been preserved.

Preservation Houston presented the owners with a Good Brick Award in 2018 for their faithful restoration of this historic property.

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