Somewhere back in the comments someone asked about a road open to automobile traffic behind the Chemistry Building. I can’t find the comment but if I recall correctly there were some questions about exactly where this road extended at various times. I looked around in some of the logical places but I never could discover even a trace of that road until just the other day. But here it is now, in all its glory, in a 1942 aerial shot taken by the Texas Air National Guard:
It’s kind of a funny little road–it doesn’t really go anywhere except around the building. It does look like there might be a few parking spaces at the northeast corner, but otherwise I guess it must have been arranged around access to the loading dock.
The reason I couldn’t find it in other aerial images is pretty simple: those little trees grew up and blocked the view. This picture is from the early ’50s (the stadium is very new and the Gaping Maw is still out there in the Stadium Lot) and it’s hard to tell if there’s still an operational road back there.
This photograph is a little bit later. It actually has a date on it: July 3, 1956. Here we get a better look at what’s going on with the ingress and egress to the main parking lot. Note that the road doesn’t come around the building and exit at the loop anymore. It’s hard to be sure, but I think there’s still a road there and I think you could drive across campus all the way from Main Street, take a left at Chemistry and then a right by the edge of the parking lot and come out on Rice Boulevard. Don’t hold me to this, though.