I don’t know whether a picture is worth a thousand words but sometimes two are. Here are two examples of Rice Institute letterhead, both from 1909. They seem to me to have emerged from two entirely different mental worlds.
This first letterhead was adopted by the trustees not long after the Institute was chartered and Captain Baker was still using it in 1909:
The second is what Dr. Lovett was using at the same time:
Bonus: One of my favorite spots.