A thumb-nail history of the city of Houston, Texas, from its founding in 1836 to the year 1912

THE CrTY OF HOUSTON, TEXAS 51
two-stories in height, and stood on the site where
the new 18-story Rice Hotel is now being erected,
corner of Main and Texas avenue. The Hutchins
House was not completed until after the war; that
is, not completely so, and there was a long delay
before it could be used for the purpose for which
it was designed. This historic house was burned
down several years ago and the ground was allowed
to remain vacant until 1911 when it was purchased
by the Southern Pacific railroad and the present
magnificent office building of that road was erected
on it.
During 1859 and 1860 Houston had something
of a building boom and a great many really pretentious
(for that day) buildings were erected in various
parts of the city. One or two rather extensive
fires occurred about that time, which cleared the
ground of wooden shacks and enabled the owners
to build more substantial houses, which they did.
During and for some years after the war there
was very little in the way of improvements. During
the war it was impossible to do much and after peace
had been declared the people were too poor to do
anything that was not absolutely imperative. The
skyline of Houston, therefore, underwent no
changes until 1894, when Jacob Binz erected the
first skyscraper in Houston. This building is still
standing and though there are many others that
tower high above it, it is justly considered one of
the most useful and substantial buildings of its class
in Houston. This building occupies one of the his-

Young, Samuel Oliver. A thumb-nail history of the city of Houston, Texas, from its founding in 1836 to the year 1912. Houston, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth24649/. Accessed April 25, 2015.