YMCA - Rossonian - First Baptist Church
23 October 1913: 1. The YMCA building at 916-920 Fannin was completed in 1908 at five stories. 2. The three story building with awnings at 910 Fannin was the location of Modern Plumbing & Electric Co. and Modern Engine Co. servicing gasoline engines. The Lunch Room advertised on the marquee may have been a leftover from Sue H. Staples’ boardinghouse as listed on the 1908 city directory. 3. Details are lacking to establish whether these structures on the left side of Fannin were the Cotton Hotel at 1018-20 Rusk, or the Armory further back at 1018-20 Texas Avenue, or across Texas the Moore-Burnett Building at 1013-19 Texas visible on the right. 4. On the right side of Fannin, Christ Church seems to be obscured by closer buildings, including possibly the Butler Flats at 1103-7 Rusk, a complex of 12 apartments. 5. First Baptist Church at 819 Fannin. 6. The Rossonian at 917-919 Fannin, a luxurious 7 story building of apartment flats completed in 1910 (see also The Rossonian) .
8 October 2011: 1. The 22 story City National Bank Building at 1001 McKinley [Now called the 1001 McKinney Building] was built in 1949, the first large downtown building constructed after the hiatus in construction during WWII; 2. 1001 McKinley Building Parking Garage 900 Fannin 12 floors [replacing the 10 story 1923 Houston Lighting and Power Co. Building]; 3. Aloft [Once Stowers Furniture Store], now a residential mid-rise at 820 Fannin, 10 floors 1913; 4. 811 Main Building [BG Group Place] 811 Main 46 floors 2011 with distinctive setback on floors 39-43 facing southeast [Replacing Cotton / Montague Hotel, 804 Fannin 11 floors 1913 imploded Jan 20 2008]; 5. Club Quarters Hotel [Texas State Hotel], 720 Fannin, 16 floors, 1925, Joseph Finger, Beaux Arts style; 6. Texas Tower [Sterling Building] Fannin 1931, 21 floors, art deco, on 6-8 May 2014 imploded and replaced by 609 Main, 48 Floors, 2017; 7. Congress Plaza [Harris County Courthouse Complex], 1019 Congress; 8. San Jacinto Jail, 701 N. San Jacinto St., 9 floors, 1920; 9. Magnolia Hotel [Houston Post-Dispatch Building], 1100 Texas Avenue, 22 Floors, 1926; 10. Texaco Building [The Star-North Building], 1111 Rusk, 16 floors, 1938; 11. Melrose Building [Le Méridien], 1121 Walker Avenue, 21 floors, 1954, modernism style [the first in Houston in International style]; 12. 2 Houston Center, 909 Fannin, 40 stories, 1974, international style.
Postmarked: 23 October 1913; Houston, Texas
Stamp: 1c Green Ben Franklin #405
To: The Jacksons
P.O. Box 24
Fort Collins, Colo.
Houston Oct 23
Dear Folks: We arrived this morning and will remain over night and on to New Orleans in the morning. This town and Dallas are Splendid towns and away ahead of my expectations. Dallas has a fine C. S. Church where we attended services last night. Beryl rains [?] me in much love to all Clarence W.
Clarence and Beryl White were on the way from Fort Collins to New Orleans on a trip that seems to have been more leisure than work. Clarence mentions the C. S. Church in Dallas, referring of course to the First Church of Christ, Scientist. Mary Baker Eddy began this faith in Boston, MA in 1879, and by the time of this postcard in 1913 there were churches in many cities in America, including in Dallas at 1508 Cadiz at Browder, a fine Neoclassical building seating 900 people inaugurated on 14 January 1910, and in Houston at 1716 Main at Jefferson.
Clarence mention attending services the night before, which would have been Wednesday October 22, 1913. In addition to Sunday services, CS churches held weekly testimonial meetings in which the First Reader reads passages from Mary Baker Eddy’s Bible Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, the Second Reader reads from the Bible, then those in attendance give testimonies of healing brought about through Christian Science prayer. “Practitioners” are those members who have devoted themselves full time to the practice of healing through prayer, and they form the core of the church membership.
Clarence and Beryl lived at 226 Remington St. in 1910 with Beryl’s mother, Sarah Ann (Russell) Umstot, widow of Martin N. Umstot, who had died in 1892 in Senecaville, Guernsey County, OH, and Beryl’s younger brother Major Russell Umstot. Sarah was a Practitioner of the First Christian Church, Scientist in Fort Collins, at 212 S. College, about a two minute walk from her house. Clarence was a college graduate engineer working at a sugar factory outside Fort Collins, and 28 year old Russell Umstot was a salesman at a clothing store. There is no mention of whether the Umstot’s accompanied Clarence and Beryl on their trip, or whether they stayed behind minding the house in Fort Collins.
Clarence sends his postcard to “The Jacksons” at a post office box in Fort Collins. This was likely the family including Hiram Kirk Jackson, the First Reader at the Fort Collins First Church of Christ, Scientist. Hiram was a bachelor, son of George W. Jackson, a farmer in Laporte about 6 miles up the Cache la Poudre River northwest of Fort Collins. George had come from Fremont County where they had lived in Howard (Fruitmere) on the Arkansas River about 50 miles west of Cañon City, CO. “The Jacksons” in the larger sense included Hiram (b. 1878) and his parents George Washington Jackson (1850-1919), Martha Alzena Emeline Allen (1852-1925) and siblings, Mary Sophia (1880-1961), Martha Sarah Leah (1888-1966), Carrie Elizabeth (1891- 1975), and Pansy Mabel (1894-1974). His brother LeRoy Wiles Jackson (1886-1911) had passed away the year before the postcard was sent, leaving a widow and child who may have remained dependent on the Jackson family.
Clarence was originally from Knoxville, TN, son of William Orlando Jackson (1843-1920), Civil War veteran, Captain of Company I of the 4th Tennessee Cavalry. Tennessee was a divided state in the Civil War, eastern sections including Knoxville were sympathetic to the union cause, while the west was more Confederate. Clarence, described as 5’ 9”, stout, with blue eyes and light hair, grew up in Knoxville, TN and moved to Pittsburg, PA where he married Beryl Umstot on June 10, 1905. He listed his address then as 4740 Friendship Avenue and she lived at 907 James Street in Wilkinsburg west of Pittsburg. Five years earlier Beryl had been teaching music at Turtle Creek to the east over a ridge from Pittsburg, living with her sister Augusta Wright.
They moved to Colorado by 1910 where Clarence worked at the Great Western Sugar Company, where he was a college-trained engineer. His trip to New Orleans may have been a leisure trip or work-related, Houston and New Orleans both had corporate sugar companies, sugar cane in the south and sugar beets in the north. Northern Colorado was a pioneer at beet cultivation, and Colorado State Agricultural College in Fort Collins had been the leading research institution in beet sugar extraction. Clarence and Beryl would move to Denver by 1917 where he continued to work at Great Western Sugar Company as Chief Draftsman in the splendid Sugar Building at 1530 16th Street at Wazee in downtown while living at 2839 Federal Boulevard. Beryl’s mother and brother moved there as well, Sarah to 36 Lincoln St. and Russell to 626 Grant St. working as a broker. The sugar business moved them again by 1920 to Brooklyn, NY, when they lived at 169 Columbia Heights. Their building, The Standish, still stands tall, 12 floors just a block off the bay overlooking Manhattan, even then a most prestigious address. A decade later found them in San Francisco at 56 Madrone on the west side of the city in a residential neighborhood. Clarence still worked in the sugar business as an engineer.
Many of the Jackson family had also moved to California. Hiram and his sister Pansy, as well as their parents moved to Long Beach, Los Angeles County, CA. Living at 1262 East Broadway in 1930 were Hiram and Pansy, their sister Martha Jackson and her husband Charlie Scott Link, and Maria Sophia Jackson and her husband Barb Snow. Not far at 366 Walnut were Carrrie Elizabeth Jackson and her husband Clifford and girls Helen, Myriel, and Myra Lee. Hiram continued his role as practitioner in the First Church of Christ, Scientist and worked in the historic Beaux-Arts 12 story Pacific Southwest Building (Andrus Building, Pacific Tower, Times Building built in 1923) at 201 Long Beach Boulevard about a mile down Broadway in the downtown district.
Beryl died 9 January 1937 in San Francisco, and was buried in Cypress Lawn Cemetery south of the city. On 11 June 1938 Clarence married again to Ruby Virginia Alexander, who had been married to Edward Ware Tabor. They moved to Esparto, Yolo County about 25 miles northwest of Davis, CA. There Clarence died on 16 June 1942 and was buried in Capay Cemetery. Ruby died in San Diego in 1988 and was buried next to Clarence. Rose Hills Memorial Park in Whittier, CA holds the remains of many of the Jackson Family: Hiram Kirk Jackson (1878-1948), Pansy Mabel Jackson (1894-1974), Martha Sarah Leah Jackson Link (1888-1966), Maria Sophia Jackson Snow (1880-1961). Their parents, George W. Jackson (1850-1919) and Martha Jackson (1852- 1925), are buried in Sunnyside Cemetery in Long Beach.