From the Top of Mech Lab towards Main

Bad trip to the dentist today, so I worked at home this afternoon. While I was getting some slides together for my Continuing Studies class I came across another pair of pictures taken from roughly the same spot many years apart. These are much odder, though, than the two aerial shots I posted about last week and show us campus and the medical center from an unfamiliar angle.

This first one is an aerial, and it must have been made in November, 1921 when the Flying Owls took a series of wonderful pictures on the day of the Rice-A&M football game:

The next one seems to have been taken from the top of the Mech Lab rather than from the air, but the angle is otherwise nearly the same. This one isn’t dated, but it must have been taken within a relatively short span of time. You can see the corner of Anderson Hall and the opening cut into the hedges at the left was for access to Abercrombie, which was built just a bit later in 1948. I don’t think you’d be able to see any of the Bonner Lab from this angle even if it were there, but I just have a gut feeling that it wasn’t there yet. (How’s that for the historical method, eh?) I’m going to call this circa 1950 unless somebody has a better idea.

I'll see if I can sweet talk someone into taking me up there for a look.

Here’s an aerial shot of campus in 1950 for comparison:

Bonus: I found this cabinet in the basement of the old physics building one day while the renovations were going on.  I find the names on the drawers completely hilarious, but my favorites are the two at the top right:

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11 Responses to From the Top of Mech Lab towards Main

  1. Karl Benson says:

    The car at the lower left of the shot from the Mechanical Lab appears to be a 1949 Ford (see; so this photo cannot be earlier than the fall of 1949.

  2. Grungy says:

    This is the first half-buried view of Harris Gulley that I can recall.
    That’s a lot of oyster shell on that end of campus.

  3. James Medford says:

    The Hermann Professional Building in the Medical Center is visible in the second photo, and it was built in 1949, per the AIA Houston Architectural Guide.

    • Karl Benson says:

      Both and list 1948 as the completion date. The building is now called The University of Texas Health Science Center Professional Building, having been purchased by UT in 2004.

  4. Matt Noall says:

    I guess you realize that those drawers seem to be for plumbing supplies. Looks to me like they had an overly tight budget or somebody pinched one penny too many. Think about what could happen in plumbing using a “probably good valve!!’. Beggars the imagination. Glad I would not have to clean up!

  5. mjthannisch says:

    I am told that that gulley was a good source of arrowheads at one time. Can anyone confirm that, and can anyone tell me which Amerindian group it may have been? You can send to my email if you know.

  6. Deborah Gronke Bennett says:

    The 1950 campus shot shows what I know as Wiess College (north of West Hall which I knew as the Hanszen old section). What was Wiess called before it got a college name?

    In the 1950 shot from the top of Mech Lab, is the path straight into the picture (towards the quad and eventually out to Main St) still a road, or has it become a pedestrian-only path by the time of the picture? I love seeing how much the trees grew between the first two pictures.

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