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The Houston City Council has designated the Baker-Meyer Building and the Hilliard House as protected historic landmarks and the Casa a la Punta House as a historic landmark.
The Baker-Meyer Building at 313 Travis Street in downtown Houston was designed in the Greek Revival style as is revealed in the corbelled brick cornice. The building was constructed circa 1870, making it among the oldest commercial buildings still standing in Houston.
George Baker, a pioneer citizen of Houston, was the original owner. In 1884, George Baker’s daughter Rebecca married Joseph F. Meyer and the building has remained in the Meyer family ever since. The shops and stores that have occupied the building were a feed store; a tailor shop run by former state representative Rex Braun; a toy store; and several night clubs in the late 1960s and early 1970s.
For the past thirty years, Treebeards Restaurant has occupied the building. The restaurant has become a well known institution for lunch-time dining in the Main Street Market Square Historic District.
According to architects, the Hilliard House at 3375 Del Monte Drive, located in the original section of River Oaks, is an excellent example of the Tudor Revival style. The house features a steeply pitched side-gabled roof, chimney with decorative chimney pots, and decorated verge boards over the gabled entryway. The house was built by contractor J. Leon Osborn in 1935-36 on speculation and was purchased by Harry and Susan Hilliard in July 1936.
Harry Hilliard was a prominent Houstonian and one of the principals of Adams & Porter, an international marine insurance firm based in Houston. Susan Hilliard was a founder of the Garden Club of Houston. In 1967, the house passed to the current owners, the Hilliard’s son and daughter-in-law. It is one of very few homes in River Oaks that remain in the hands of the original family.
The residence at 3223 Chevy Chase, designed by well-known architect Charles Oliver, was built in 1929-30 for Mr. and Mrs. William Albert Ryan. The name “Casa a la Punta” refers to the home’s unique location on a point of land bounded by Groveland and Chevy Chase Drive. It is one of the distinctive Mediterranean style homes built by Oliver in River Oaks during the late 1920s and 1930s. Casa a la Punta is the first Oliver-built Mediterranean style home to be registered as a Houston landmark.
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