In 1886, the architects of Texas formed the first organization of their profession in the state, the Texas State Association of Architects (TSAA), which was affiliated with the Western Association of Architects of Chicago. Their organizational meeting was held in Austin on January 19th of that year. The charter of the TSAA stated that: "The objects of this association are to unite in one common fellowship the architects of Texas; to combine their efforts, so as to promote the artistic, scientific, and practical efficiency of the profession; and to cultivate and encourage the kindred arts, and to correct unprofessional practices". The officers elected were: President, J. J. Kane of Ft. Worth; First Vice President, J. N. Preston of Austin; Second Vice President, Nathaniel Toby of Galveston; Secretary, S. A. J. Preston of Austin; Treasurer and Assistant Secretary, W. W. Larmour of Waco. The members of the executive committee were John N. Andrewartha of Austin, W. C. Dodson of Waco, James Wahrenberger of San Antonio, Eugene T. Heiner of Houston, and James E. Flanders of Dallas. There were twelve other charter members: A. N. Dawson and S. B. Haggert, both of Ft. Worth; W. W. Dudley of Waco; Nicholas J. Clayton and W. H. Tyndall of Galveston; J. Larmour, A. M. C. Nixon, and Oscar Ruffini of Austin; George E. Dickey, Houston; and Alfred Giles and Albert F. Beckmann of San Antonio. This group represented the forces that began the fight for regulation of the profession throughout the state. Two decades of difficult times lay before them.
In March of the following year, 1887, Flanders vacationed in California. When interviewed about his trip, he said that "the land of the vine" was a good place to recreate but he failed to mention to the reporter that he also considered it a great opportunity for an architect. San Diego was a booming town when JEF visited there. The population was growing at a rapid rate - from only 5000 in 1885 to almost 40,000 at the time of JEF's vacation there two years later. Construction was occurring at a frantic rate and many people were forced to live in temporary housing as contractors tried to keep up with the swelling population. In spite of his increasing success in Dallas - 1886 was one of his most productive years - and his role in the fledgling organization of the TSAA, JEF took immediate action and made plans to sell his business and move to California. The newly arrived architect Albert Ullrich took over JEF's office and clientele and went on to become one of the most prominent architects in Dallas during the next few years, designing buildings such as the Farmers Alliance Building and the extant First Baptist Church.
There is a listing in the San Diego city directory for Flanders in the same year, 1887-88. According to Bruce Kramerling of the San Diego Historical Society, his address there indicated that he probably moved into a modest one-story house in the new Land and Town Company addition. No San Diego works by Flanders have been identified from this period and indeed there may have been very few, if any, built. Almost as soon as JEF arrived there, the boom went bust. People began leaving in droves and within two years, the population had plunged from 40,000 to 16,000. Flanders was one of fourteen architects in the 1887 city directory. By 1893, that figure had dropped to only four and JEF was not among them. He moved his family back to Dallas, probably in 1890, and he moved back to the home he left in Flanders Heights. The returning family included one additional person, a son Leroy James, who was born in San Diego on January 18, 1888.
Back in Dallas business was brisk with a number of commissions within the first few years, including the residence of John Bookhouts, four new schools for the city of Dallas, a downtown office building for the Middleton Brothers, and an annex to the Texas Hall at Trinity University in Tehuacana. However, in the years following his return, JEF did very little commercial work. Most of his commissions were residences or churches. There were several schools and several buildings for the Masonic Lodge. And as new buildings were needed for the State Fair grounds the directors continued to engage JEF. During the years of 1900 through 1913, churches dominated his commissions and he averaged nine to ten churches a year during this time.
In the decade of the 1890's, the architects of the TSAA continued in their efforts to incorporate their members into a unified and active society furthering the objectives of their group. They were among the leaders in the nation in attempting to gain legislative regulation of the architectural profession in 1889. Architect's complaints centered around two practices. One objection was the practice of continued use of a plan without compensation to the architect. Commercial and governmental clients would pay for a design for one building and then considered the plans as their property. They would continue to use it, sometimes intact and sometimes with modifications, to build other structures. In some cases, designs were copied with no credit or compensation given to the original architect. Another practice that exploited architects was that of design competitions. These were held for designs for major structures and a number of architects submitted proposed plans. The clients would take the best features of the best entrants and combine them to construct their building. The bill proposed in 1889 to limit these practices provided for a licensing board and was supported by a majority of the members of the Texas legislature. However, the bill never came to a vote and the matter was tabled.
In 1889 eight Texas architects became Fellows of the American Institute of Architects, the A.I.A.. Flanders was one of the eight. The TSAA, however, remained an effective force through 1892 although several members, probably disgruntled by some practices of the group, refused to pay their dues and were suspended. J. Riley Gordon was one of the four but he was back in the group by the following year. During the depression year of 1893 much of the construction activity ceased and the TSAA suspended their activities. Flanders was fortunate. He continued working for the city of Dallas in designing three new schools that opened that year. In 1894, some of the original TSAA broke away from the group. These were the members who were made Fellows of the A.I.A. three years before and the group was lead by W.C. Dodson. The remaining members of the TSAA were lead by Gordon. Both groups attempted to gain recognition from the A.I.A. by securing a charter for a Texas chapter. Flanders became engaged in the battle and exchanged a series of letters, now in the A.I.A. Archives in Washington, D.C., with Alfred Stone, Secretary of the A.I.A. in July and August, 1895. These letters followed other letters to Stone and the A.I.A. by Dodson and Gordon. The A.I.A. was reluctant to issue a charter to either of the Texas groups until they had resolved their differences.
Flanders' first letter to Stone was written on July, sixth and his hostile feelings toward Gordon were evident from the beginning
Dear Sir =
Please let me know if J. Riley Gordon, of San Antonio, this state, is a member of the A.I.A. and, if so, when was he admitted, and if not - has he ever applied? And if he ever applied has he done so more than once?
Fraternally yours, J. E. Flanders
Stone, having been exposed to the predicament of the Texas architects sought to voice the Institute's concerns and in the closing remarks to his reply to this letter from JEF, he appealed;
"Why is it not possible to bring about a more fraternal feeling and secure among the younger men enough of the best of them to give the chapter a truly representative character. Any light you can throw upon the subject will be gratefully received, as the directors are most anxious to accord the wishes of the fellows of the institute present in Texas and to foster the professional spirit in the state, and to lend its aid to the elevation of the practice of architecture in every way in its power."
The A.I.A. refused to take sides in the controversy and continued to attempt to mediate the issue. Eight days later on July 18th, JEF responded to Stone in a length, impassioned and reproachful letter;
"I have wondered why we have not received a charter to form a state chapter of the A.I.A. but you letter and a recent conversation with (J. Riley) Gordon, in which he informed me that we would not receive a charter, shows me the status of the matter, and I wish to know what G's (Gordon's) hold is that he can restrain or keep old members of the A.I.A. from obtaining that which is their natural right - and I also want to know if the directors of the A.I.A. possess a dictatorship over state chapters, that they shall say who shall and who shall not enter as members. We of the Institute, who have resided in the state for years, would be better qualified to say who can become members with credit to the Institute, at least to the chapter. Another question, does membership in the state chapter carry with it membership in the A.I.A.? I so interpret it, and in this case, the members at large vote on all candidates. Mr. Gordon asked me to agree to admit the state association in a body. This I told him I would never do, and I never will for there are men in the association I will not affiliate with in any capacity. You speak about opposition to young men in the profession. Let me assure you that there is no such opposition only when it should be. There are a few young men in the state who have debased the profession until it is almost considered a disgrace to belong to it, and we who are members of the Institute realize this fact, and we wish to organize this state chapter, that we may replace the profession to the position of dignity and honor to which it belongs. If the directors do not see proper to grant us the privilege, we can only hope that it can work out in some other way. At the same time we think that the treatment we are receiving is not right and leads us to think that our ideas of membership in the Institute have been over-drawn, especially when the request of its' members is refused at the dictation of an outsider, for Mr. Gordon led me to believe that he held the reins. I sincerely hope the directors will reconsider their action and grant us charter rights to organize a state chapter. The granting of this charter will get all the best men in the state in the chapter, young and old."
Stone immediately replied to Flanders stating that the position of the A.I.A. as being a cautious one, explaining that no action had been taken as the directors wanted to see the rift healed between the quarreling factions in Texas. Stone was directed to also write to Dodson and Gordon "with a view to harmonizing differences and avoid placing ourselves as judges in a matter on which we were not well informed, as the statements from both sides were so entirely different". He concluded by saying that, "We do not want members added just to increase numbers, but we do want to unite the good men in the Stae (sic) in a chapter, and we want a Texas Chapter."
Flanders again replied in an assailing manner on July 22nd:.
"Your favor of the 20th to hand, while I like its' general tone, at the same time you admit that Gordon's influence has kept the Fellows of Texas from receiving their charter to date. You and all members of the Directory know you had no business or right to even consider for a moment letters from one or a hundred non-members of the institute. What other society does such a thing? If the Fellows of Texas are not worthy of confidence then bring charges, prove up, and turn them out. If they are worthy of confidence, then in the name of right and justice grant them their request. The action of the Directory is like unto a father spurning his own son at the "tale of woe" of an alien. Heed us or turn us out.
Personally I will say I wish to build up a good chapter of good architects working closely to the ethics of the profession. Fellow Dodson I am afraid is soured, but all are not so. Most of us want to do honor to the A.I.A. overlooking any little personal matters."
A few days later, on August 7th, Stone again replied to JEF with a copy of his letter also going to W.C. Dodson who had originally requested the charter. The letter began:
"Your several favors have been received and referred to the President of the Institute, and after careful consideration of the same, together with all the attending circumstances, and with full assurance of the desirability of having a chapter in Texas, I hereby, in accordance with the Board of Directors, am authorized to grant in behalf of the Institute, a charter to the same, provided the Chapter will name some place in Texas as its' headquarters and will not change the same without notification to the Institute, - the Institute reserving the further right under the By-laws to charter other chapters in Texas."
So the long fight was won and the architects of Texas were authorized to unite in a state chapter of the A.I.A., the culmination of a movement that had begun almost ten years earlier. But possibly, the directors of the A.I.A. took their step knowing there were still two possible outcomes and the Institute could not lose either way. The Texas architects could overcome their differences and indeed unite to organize a chapter based on a covenant between them or, they would fail to compromise and therefore, fail to fulfill the terms of the charter. Tom Woods, who was then president of the TSAA, gave an indication of the probable result in a letter he wrote to Stone on August 9th, written while Stone's offer of the charter was still in the mail to Flanders and Dodson
My Dear Sir
"I do not know what step to take next: I have done everything that is honest and legitimate, and I know that it is useless to try and proceed further, as I am now convinced that my defeat has been, and will continue to be, in my own state. I am willing to be examined on the history of architecture, and upon any branch belonging to it, provided the examining board are competent and are not prejudiced. I am sorry to say that I fear it will be a long time before the discord in Texas is broken, for you can see from my own experience where the trouble lays. We will have a meeting in Galveston on the 26th inst. And I do wish you could be here and investigate for yourself; what the results of our meeting will be I cannot tell. I have invited Mr. (Nicholas) Clayton (architect, Galveston) to be present, besides every member of the A.I.A. in the state of Texas, but they are so full of the demon that I doubt whether any of them will attend or work. I will take your advice in this matter and abide by what you say. I would have no trouble getting the signatures of the entire Southern Chapter of the A.I.A. except Mr. Clayton."
Hoping to hear from you at an early date, I am,
Respectfully, Tom Wood
The charter was received by Dodson in November of 1895 but in less than two years he returned it to the A.I.A. Wood was right - it would "still be a long time before the discord in Texas [was] broken". In 1902, J. Riley Gordon, still frustrated with the TSAA, and with his fruitless efforts to gain membership in the A.I.A., left the state for good, moving to New York where he continued a successful career. Less than a year after Dodson relinquished the charter, JEF, in a letter that sounded like the proclamation of an embryonic movement wrote again to Alfred Stone:
"Dear Sir = The architects of the state, mostly non-members of the A.I.A., are desirous of forming a chapter of the Institute, and I am with them in the movement, they have asked to obtain the necessary instructions so that we may proceed in due form. If I remember correctly, Mr. Dodson of Waco, some time ago obtained a charter for the purpose, but he never did anything with it. Some of the members of the Institute I think will object to forming a chapter as we propose, our intent being to admit to membership upon the qualifications required to join the Institute, without prejudice of any kind.
Awaiting your reply I am truly yours, J. E. Flanders
We do not have the record of Stone's reply.
In November, 1908, forty-six architects met in Austin and revived the TSAA, twenty-two years after its' inception. Flanders was elected president and James Wahrenberger was elected first vice president. The leadership positions were endowed on the senior members of the group and many of the other members were, of course, younger men who had not been a part of the earlier conflicts. Their charter voiced the same concerns, in almost the same language, as the original charter - added to it was the phrase "to help the cities of the state in securing the proper building and sanitary laws". Foremost in their minds though were their concerns for the differentiation of the "architect" from the "builder" or the "contractor", the regulation of the profession and a code of ethics for its' members. JEF served again as president in 1910 and in 1911. On April 1, 1913, as JEF made plans to retire to California, nine architects of the state finally organized the first Texas Chapter of the A.I.A.
In the March 5th, 1886 edition of the Dallas the Dallas Morning News, it was reported that, "Stone for the college building at Tehuacana is on the ground ready to be placed in position. Mr. Flanders, of Dallas, who has supervision of the building has been in consultation with the contractors". These stones were for the South Wing. The North Wing of the building was constructed in 1892-1894 and with the completion of it, the original exterior of the building was almost entirely enclosed within later construction. The date of the construction of the clock tower is not known but the building was completed by 1900. Three of the four stories of the building were constructed of limestone and the forth was of frame construction covered with tin shingles, as was the tower itself. This is one of JEF's rare uses of the Second Empire style and on it he used the "S" shaped Mansard roof on the building itself. A concave Mansard roof led into the lines of the top of the tower, creating a complimentary "S" configuration there. Gothic Revival elements are present in the pedimented windows.
John Bookhout was an associate Justice of the Dallas County Court of Criminal Appeals. In 1891, he built this house at the corner of Mastin and Caruth streets, now St. Paul and Munger.
Virginia and Lee McAlister, in their book A Field Guide to American Houses, called this "a transitional house with Queen Anne form and Shingle porches and porte cochere". The Shingle arches give the appearance of Romanesque arches and the wood crafted friezes suggest the Sullivanesque frieze that would appear within a few years.
MIDDLETON BROTHERS BUILDING - 1892
The Middleton brothers made their fortune in real estate and in 1892 built this eclectic four story building on the northeast corner of Main and Ervay streets. It was demolished in ca1929 and the Dreyfuss Brothers Building took its' place. Flanders opened his office in this building when he returned to Texas from California in 1893.
The W. A. Strain house is still occupied by descendants of the family that originally settled the property in 1846. William L. White, the father-in-law of W. A. Strain, was a cattleman, banker, investor and ginner. He planned to build a home on the site when he purchased the land but failed to do so. After his death in 1881, his wife sold the property to her daughter Minnie and her husband William (Will) A. Strain. The family built a home there in 1895-96.
Will Strain owned a drug store on the north side of the square in Lancaster. It was being run by his brother Horace when Will decided to move to Waxahachie and open another store there. After his marriage to Minnie in 1892, Will traded the store for farmland and became a full time farmer.
The extant plans of the W. A. Strain home indicate that it was designed by "Flanders & Moad". The partnership with Moad was one of several brief partnerships that appear throughout JEF's career. Moad was a member of the Masonic Tannehill Lodge No. 52 in Dallas, as was JEF, an that is possibly where the association began. Moad was probably the actual draftsman of these plans as the style is not consistent with other drawings done by JEF. The builder of the home is listed as Joe Lyon. The house is a two-and-a-half story, late Victorian design with Queen Anne influences. The shingle-clad turret with a conical roof is a distinctive feature of the house and the use of shingles is continued in a wide band between the first and second floors.
The house suffered significant damage in the 1994 tornado that devastated much of the city. Restoration work done afterwards further enhanced the architectural integrity of the house.
JAMES E. FLANDERS RESIDENCE - 1897
Illustration courtesy Mrs. Edmund J. Kahn
No records have been found to positively identify Flanders as the architect of this house but it seems probable that Flanders would design his own home. The presence of his trademark Sullivanesque frieze that can be seen beneath the eve lends further credence to that hypothesis.
JEF's office address also changed in 1897. The house was at 352 Jackson and the office was at 354 Jackson. His grandson later recalled watching his father and grandfather at work in the basement of the house, drawing plans at tables by some large windows. In the photograph above, a walkway is evident to the left of the steps leading up to the porch and there is a sign on the wall beside it. The two large street level windows probably opened into his office.
This house gives us a look at a simple, unadorned style not seen in other known JEF residences, as well as a glimpse into his personal tastes. JEF's rendering of the Flanders Apartments, built in 1909 at the corner of Jackson and Pearl streets, includes this house which was adjacent to the new structure.
Stephen Dudley Heard and his older brother John S. Heard established a general merchandise store in McKinney in 1873. The business was a successful one and the brothers prospered. In 1880, they built the extant McKinney Opera House above their store and it became the center of the social life of this small north Texas town. Both brothers had numerous interests and they were active in the social and civic affairs of McKinney. In 1903, Stephen Heard was included in the publication of the Houston Post entitled The Men of Texas.
It was Stephen Heard who, along with his wife Lillie Snap Heard, enlisted Flanders to design their new home which was completed in 1900. The house was constructed by Hamilton & Martin, contractors of McKinney, while the Heard family occupied a small cottage on the east side of the property. The house, built in the Late Victorian Style with Shingle Style elements, is in the downtown area just a few blocks north of the town square where the Stephen's business was located.
An account of the house in the Architectural Heritage of McKinney says:
"The woodwork of oak and curly pine were hand-rubbed with pumice and oil. The house has double floors with builders paper in between. The exterior of the house is based on 6 X 6 X 6 inch studs covered with storm sheeting, or ship lap, placed diagonally for added strength, then outside boarding. The roof was two layers of wooden shingles and one of asbestos. It has never leaked.".
James T. West, A.I.A., was the planning consultant for restorative and adaptive work done to the house in the 1970's and he described the characteristics of the unusual front elevation of the house this way:
"In the front elevation three principle divisions occur to create centered main entry with portico supported by Romanesque columns and capitals with acanthus leaf motif, centered ovolo egg enrichment used also as supports for the veranda frieze which reads as a continuous band interrupted only by paired classical acanthus leaf brackets above columns. Above the projecting portico on the second floor is a three part bay office window with stained glass transoms, fully molded to tie the composition in the stick style fashion to the major second-story mass below the roof. On the peaked roof, designed to give headroom and a dynamic silhouette against the sky, a unique monitor-dormer device is centered above the lower composition, providing light and the essential unifying device of entry, roof, and horizontal planes."
The main floor of the house, in addition to the entry foyer and hallways, includes double parlors, a formal dining room, kitchen, and butler's pantry. The dining room, which has a curvilinear exterior wall, includes built-in cabinetry with distinctive curved glass doors. A spacious veranda extends across the front of the house and wraps around both sides. The veranda is skirted with red brick which extends upwards into the base of each supporting column. These are joined by black ironwork. There is also a porch on the southwest side of the house. On the second floor, there are five bedrooms all opening onto a broad central hallway. Originally, there was also a sleeping porch upstairs and one bathroom. The small upstairs porch that is seen on the front elevation of the house is accessed from the adjoining room.
Just a few years after the Heard-Craig house, JEF designed a home for State Senator Robert Warren in Terrell. Warren and his wife, Annie Cartwright Warren, began construction of this house at 705 Griffith Street in 1903, financed mostly with income from oil discovered on the Warren farm near Beaumont. Annie's father, Matthew Cartwright, also built a home (extant) in Terrell just down Griffith Street from the Warren house. The Warrens attended the Methodist church in Terrell and probably became aware of Flanders's work in 1901 when he designed the new Terrell Methodist church.
Robert Warren was elected to the state senate in 1911 and he served there until 1915. He was a colleague of Sam Rayburn who, it is said, visited overnight in the Warren house on several occasions. Warren was also a member of the board of directors of the Harris National Bank of Terrell. The family occupied the house until 1920 when they moved to Dallas where Warren worked in real estate and other investments. Their daughter, Annie Lee, later married the oilman and philanthropist Summerfield Griffith Roberts. The name of the Summerlee Foundation in Dallas originated with this union.
The eclectic home, including Colonial Revival as well as Prairie Style elements, featured stone and terra cotta trim and was dominated by its' entry with twin pairs of banded and fluted Ionic columns, supporting a third floor room that extended over the portico. There are approximately 7000 square feet in the house, eighteen rooms and ten fireplaces. A large porch reaches across the front of the house and extends around the left, or northeast side, of the house where it becomes a covered porch. It then extends into and terminates with a porte-cochere.
While the exterior of the house is impressive, its' most important architectural features are found inside. Much of the original interior is still intact and contains many significant Prairie Style elements in its' construction, particularly in the stairways, mantles, built-in cabinetry, and beamed ceilings. A Kansas City firm, Keith and Company, spent many weeks stenciling the unusually wide frieze in each of the first floor rooms. Elaborate Arts & Crafts as well as Art Nouveau and Oriental designs are found in these rooms as well as in the upper hallway. Plasterwork ornaments several of the first floor ceilings.
The W. C. McCord family purchased the house from the Warrens when they moved to Dallas. In 1969, the house was sold to Murphy and Emily Crowell. It was later sold again and, on the day this text is being written, the home is featured in the real estate section of The Dallas Morning News, advertised for sale for $419,000.
L. E. GRIFFITH HOME - 1909
L. E. Griffith, Jr. was president of the First State Bank of Terrell and was owner of the Griffith Drug Store. Griffith, who was known around town as "Mr. Eddie", married Netta Washington Morrill, a teacher at Toone College, in 1904. Several years later he built this Georgian Revival residence at 801 First Street, next door to his residence then. Flanders was the architect and the builder was a local man named Chapman. The house was the second home built by the Griffiths on the property and was, in fact, built over the foundation of the earlier (1865-70) structure. It remained in the Griffith family until 1972-73 and since that time has been occupied by a series of owners.
The front elevation of the house features a pedimented entry, containing a Palladian window and supported on both sides by a pair of immense Roman Ionic columns. The entry covers a balcony that opens from, what was originally a second floor nursery, and is flanked by a wide porch that wraps around both sides of the house. Glass panels on both sides of the doorway are cleverly disguised doorways themselves.
A grandson of the original owners, Davis Griffith-Cox, still lives in a nearby house and he recalls some of the original details of the house, including speaking tubes throughout - from the upstairs to both the front and rear entrances as well as to the kitchen and basement. The house was heated with a coal burning furnace which had a reverse blowing system that could be used for summer ventilation. The furnace was located in the basement where two hidden stairways terminated. Buttons in the floor under the dining room could be used to call the servants with the press of a toe.
The main stairway began in the center of the large formal entry hall and curved to both sides at the landing with two stairways on either side continuing to the second floor sitting room. Stained glass "transparent chip" beveled glass windows and transoms provided air and light to the upper level of the stairwell and into the sitting room. A short hallway from the landing led to the sleeping porch. The three upstairs bedrooms opened into the upper sitting room. The house was lighted by both gas and electricity and many of the decorative lighting fixtures were a combination of both.
Flanders seems to have had, if not a superstition, then a penchant for obtaining the first building permit of each year. On January 1, 1909, he obtained the permit to build his "twenty room flat" on the southwest corner of Jackson and Pearl streets. This property was adjacent to his 1897 home and Flanders's rendering of the apartments also shows this house.
The Los Flanders Apartments has elements of the style that JEF used on churches he designed during the same period such as the Methodist churches in Pilot Point and Corpus Christi.
When JEF returned to Dallas from California in ca1891, he moved back to his home in Flanders Heights. In 1897 he moved to his new house at 352 Jackson and shortly after the Los Flanders Apartments were built, the family moved form the house to the apartments. He also built and lived in an apartment after his retirement to California.
SAN JACINTO SCHOOL - 1891
The San Jacinto School, completed in 1891, was the first of these. Just over two acres of land for the School were purchased in 1890 and construction of the school began soon afterwards. The building was bounded by San Jacinto St., Washington Ave., and Ross Ave. The building was demolished in 1948 to build a school administration building.
ALAMO SCHOOL ca1893
In 1893, with the country in a depression, three new schools designed by JEF opened at the beginning of the school year. Two of these were in south Dallas. The Alamo School was built on the northwest corner of Nettie and Ophelia streets (now Jefferies and Hickory). According to William L. McDonald in his book Dallas Rediscovered, the school was in the working class neighborhood of the Santa Fe and the H&TC additions.
COLUMBIAN SCHOOL - 1893
Another south Dallas school, "the Columbian School opened in the fall of 1893 at the corner of Akard and Royal Streets. In 1914, the name was changed to Royal Street School to avoid confusion with the Cumberland Hill School. Nine years later, in 1923, it became the school administration building. It was razed in 1954 to make room for the Dallas Memorial Auditorium".
OAK CLIFF CENTRAL HIGH SCHOOL
The last Flanders school to open in 1893 was the Oak Cliff Central High School constructed on the southwest corner of E. Tenth Street and Patton. It was the largest and the most architecturally significant of the Dallas area schools. Flanders listed all of these schools as references in an 1895 listing and the Oak Cliff school was the featured illustration. The building was razed in 1927 for residential construction.
DALLAS PUBLIC SCHOOLS - 1891-93
JEF's cousin, John James Flanders, was the architect for the Chicago Public School System and this may have been an influence in JEF's decision to pursue work in this field on his return to Dallas from San Diego. During these first few years back, he did design at least four of the original buildings for the Dallas school district as well as schools in Groesbeck and Texarkana.
It was noted in 18983 that "With the opening of two new brick buildings (Alamo and Columbian) which are now nearing completion, and which will be ready for occupancy in the fall, we will be able for the first time in the history of the schools to provide room in brick buildings". The cupola of the San Jacinto School and the trapezoidal structure on the Alamo School were both later removed and later photographs of the building show them with flat rooflines. Flanders also listed public school building in Groesbeck and in Texarkana in his references. The unusual dome on the San Jacinto school was also found on the South Third Street School in Waco but research has not yet been able to associate Flanders with the building.
JOHN BOOKHOUT RESIDENCE - 1891
TEXAS HALL, OLD TRINITY UNIVERSITY CAMPUS - 1871-92
The extant Texas Hall of the Old Trinity University Campus was built in several stages from 1871 to 1892. The original central section of the building, referred to as the Auditorium and Classroom Block was designed by the architect Joseph Schuster and was constructed in 1871 in the Gothic Revival style. Flanders designed later additions to the building in 1886, 1890 and 1892.
The Presbyterian Trinity University moved to Waxahachie in 1902 and soon afterwards, the building was occupied by the Methodist school, Westminster Bible College. In 1916, the school became the first accredited junior college in Texas. Southwestern University later assumed the administration of the school, maintaining it until the school closed in 1950 due to declining enrollment. The school re-opened in 1953 as the Westminster Junior College and Bible Institute and closed again in 1972. Texas Hall was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1978. While the first floor lecture rooms are still fully furnished with orchestra seats and chairs and lectern on the lecture platform, the structure is vacated and is slowly deteriorating. The ornate tower has been removed and sits behind the building, its' framework intact but missing pieces of the metal shingle work.
THIS ILLUSTRATION OF THE LOS FLANDERS APARTMENTS IS A DRAWING BY FLANDERS. It's taken from a letterhead on his stationery. The residence on the left is JEF's home.
When Katie Heard Craig, the daughter S. D. Heard who built the house, donated the property to the Heard-Craig Women's Club Trust in 1971, she stated that, "Since it's desirable that future generations know somewhat of the houses and customs of yesteryear, I would like the old home kept unchanged as much as possible with it's new use as a club house". The Trust has been faithful to her wishes and the home has been only slightly modified to make it suitable for it's new role. Great sensitivity has been displayed in restoring the grounds and the new integrates well with the original. The house has recently benefited from an interior restoration that had a primary objective of returning the house to it's original splendor. During the course of this project, an original stained glass window was discovered and returned to its' proper place, paint was removed from the interior doors revealing the beautiful curly pine wood, and carpeting was removed from the stairway revealing the sturdy oak risers. This Flanders residence has found a use that will insure its' continued care and preservation for many years.
They soon began to make plans to build their house with the "encouragement and financial aid of Minnie's widowed mother" and the house was completed in 1896. Will Strain, however, suffered from poor health and during the hot Texas summers he sought refuge in a sanitarium in Asheville, North Carolina. It was during a stay there in October, 1907, that doctors found it necessary to perform an appendectomy. He was taken to Cincinnati for treatment and died there of complications shortly afterwards. His remains were returned to Lancaster by train. Strain was described as a "Christian man of firm convictions and high ideals". He was a member of the Presbyterian church and was a trustee of the public school system. Schools were dismissed and local businesses closed for several hours for his funeral.
The Strain descendants have maintained the home with few changes. The historical significance of the home has been recognized by the Lancaster Historical Preservation Committee, the Dallas County Historical Commission, the Texas Historical Commission and the Texas Land Heritage Program. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1978
Illustrations of the Warren-Crowell House courtesy of The Texas Historical Commission
Floor plan illustration courtesy of Mrs. Carol Burk
Illustration courtesy of Lancaster Veteran's Memorial Library, Lancaster, Texas
Illustration from the American Institute of Architects, Archives, Washington, D.C.