This Old House (Pt. 1) / by Trey Farmer

Theresa Ave, known as the Johnson House to those in the neighborhood who have been around a bit, was built in 1914. It was part of the Washington Heights Development and is within a NRHD or National Register Historic District. The City’s website has more info on NRHDs here, and you can see the extent our our specific district below.

WEST LINE NATIONAL REGISTER HISTORIC DISTRICT

WEST LINE NATIONAL REGISTER HISTORIC DISTRICT

It also means that there is some fun history to hunt for. This clipping is from 1942, special thanks to Cara at the Historic Preservation Office for finding it and sharing.

The Austin American (1914-1973); Oct 11, 1942

We also like decorating with roses and ferns…

Another way that we can peer into the past is through the Sanborn Maps that can be accessed here with an Austin Library Card. The maps were originally used to estimate fire insurance and provide a great way to see a city back before Google Maps was around. Below is the plat for our block and the composite key map that is used to locate the “zoomed in” sheet. I also included the key below, there are some great little secrets it has to tell.

Austin’s 1935 Sanborn Map - Sheet 33

Austin’s 1935 Sanborn Map - Sheet 33

Austin’s 1935 Sanborn Map - Composite Key Map

Austin’s 1935 Sanborn Map - Composite Key Map

Sanborn Company Map Key

Sanborn Company Map Key