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architect texas adaptive reuse
14 years after renovating 226 Pine and moving our offices from the sixth floor of the United Bank & Trust building (historic Mims Building), we have moved to the historic Minter Building at 244 Pine. The 3 story gothic Minter Building is one of David Castle’s finest works. It was built in 1925, replacing a wooden structure of very similar size and style. The Minter’s built the building to house Minter’s Dry Goods which was established in 1899. Minter’s was the first department store in the region and a model for others to follow. Store records and memorabilia are now in the University of Texas Archives. Minter’s remained in the 24,000 sf building until 1975, when they moved to Westgate Mall. We still receive some old-timers with great stories and fond memories of the original operation. Being the only dry goods store for nearly 50 years, everyone in the region was well acquainted with Minter’s. Not only did your everyday clothes come from Minter’s, so did your bridal gown and boy scout uniform.

This photo was taken in 1925, just days before the grand opening.

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The building is concrete and plaster with hardwood floors throughout. The basement is a very unusual feature in that it extends beyond the front of the building, under the sidewalk, and under part of the street. It originally had glass block pavers in the sidewalk to let natural light into the basement offices. Quite an innovation in 1925. Unfortunately, the glass block was removed in a city sidewalk modernization project in the early 70′s. The building served as a cold war era fall out shelter. In cleaning up the building after we bought it in 2007, we found old advertising plates and many volumes of bound newspaper advertising pages. The ad at right is from 1957. What wardrobe is complete without a rabbit barrel muff for $2?

The building went through a major renovation in 1951 with a complete reorganization of departments, new Walnut store fixtures throughout, the infill of the second floor east windows, and permanent artwork installation. We are in the process of restoring the second floor windows to their pre 1951 configuration and restoring the other ground floor entry which fed stairs directly serving the basement offices and second floor employee lounge.

architect texas historic preservation

Fashion Central - 1958