The Alleys and Back Buildings of Galveston
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The Alleys and Back Buildings of Galveston : An Architectural and Social History

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Description

Alleys and back buildings, the subject of Ellen Beasley's visually compelling book, have been a feature of Galveston since its early days as a growing port city on the upper Texas Gulf Coast. And yet, most visitors to the island, as well as studies of the American urban environment, have largely overlooked alley rental houses, servant and slave quarters, carriage houses, stables, and other secondary structures. Like their counterparts in other cities, these buildings and their inhabitants have had a profound visual, physical, and social impact on the history and development of Galveston. Interweaving written documents, oral interviews, and images, Beasley presents a vivid picture of Galveston's alleys and alley life from the founding of the city into the twenty-first century. The book blends a unique combination of research, photography, and the voices of those who have lived and those who still live along the alleys. Beasley has uncovered and analyzed a wealth of information not only about the back buildings of Galveston but also about their occupants and the complex cultural forces at work in their lives.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 184 pages
  • 226.1 x 284.5 x 25.4mm | 1,224.71g
  • Texas A & M University Press
  • College Station, United States
  • English
  • 122 b&w photos, 54 maps, 35 line art, 3 tables, 4-page foldout, index
  • 1585445827
  • 9781585445820

Review quote

This is an important addition to our knowledge and understanding of how cities developed. Its value to historians, preservationists and citizens alike reaches far beyond Galveston.--Elizabeth A. Lyon, retired Georgia State Historic Preservation Officer and member, National Trust for Historic Preservation, Diversity Council -- Elizabeth A. Lyon, retired Georgia State Historic Preservation Officer and membe "This is an important addition to our knowledge and understanding of how cities developed. Its value to historians, preservationists and citizens alike reaches far beyond Galveston."--Elizabeth A. Lyon, retired Georgia State Historic Preservation Officer and member, National Trust for Historic Preservation, Diversity Council "The Alleys and Back Buildings of Galveston represents urban history at its very best. Richly illustrated, elegantly written and filled with the authentic voices of kids of people all too rarely listened to by historians, it brings back to vivid life a little-known and long vanished aspect of one of America's most distinctive cities." --Geoffrey C. Ward "I do not think another book like this exists, but hope there will be many more following this exact model all across the nation. It is at once a preservation book about common folk architecture and a well-grounded history, written from sources both oral and written. Along with this commendable quality, Alleys and Back Buildings of Galveston is a compelling read. When you finish it you feel that you know the historic, much-battered island city better than you ever have before." --William Seale "Filled with literally hundreds of photos, each keyed into easy reference maps and locators, it will certainly be a valuable book for architects, historians, students, teachers, and anyone fascinated with buildings and urban conditions." --Top Country Music and Life --Top Country Music and Life ""The Alleys and Back Buildings of Galveston" represents urban history at its very best. Richly illustrated, elegantly written and filled with the authentic voices of kids of people all too rarely listened to by historians, it brings back to vivid life a little-known and long vanished aspect of one of America's most distinctive cities." --Geoffrey C. Ward ""The Alleys and Back Buildings of Galveston" represents urban history at its very best. Richly illustrated, elegantly written and filled with the authentic voices of kids of people all too rarely listened to by historians, it brings back to vivid life a little-known and long vanished aspect of one of America's most distinctive cities." --Geoffrey C. Wardshow more

About Ellen Beasley

ELLEN BEASLEY is a preservationist, independent scholar, and photographer. She has received a Rome Prize in Urban Planning and Design from the American Academy in Rome and a Loeb Fellowship to the Harvard Graduate School of Design. Her professional interests have focused on small-scale urban settings and buildings, both old and new. She is co-author of Galveston Architecture Guidebook.show more

Back cover copy

Interweaving written documents, oral interviews, and pictorial images, Beasley presents a vivid picture of Galveston's alleys and alley life from the founding of the city into the twentieth century. The book blends a unique combination of research, photography, and the voices of those who have lived and live along the alleys. Beasley has uncovered and analyzed a wealth of new information not only about the back buildings of Galveston but also about their occupants and the complex cultural forces at work in their lives. The result is a significant contribution to the fields of architectural and urban history as well as to African American studies.show more

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