A Look at the Architect of the Building that was
South Park High School

     But in order to do that, we first need to know who the architect was. And fortunately, the answer to that question is found on page 37, of The South Park Story 1891-1971 and the Founding of Lamar University 1923-1941 written by Ray Asbury, where he states, "The plans for building the new South Park High School were being prepared during the early months of 1922 by R. H. Hunt & Company, architects. Bids were let later that summer for a main high school for $175,317 and a Home Economics Cottage for $19,607."
     R. H. Hunt, what an exciting and enlightening exercise it has been to learn who he was and what a mark he left on the landscape of so many cities. Many of his buildings have found their way into the National Register of Historic Places! Learning that our school was designed by such an acclaimed architect intensifies our already immense pride in the building and even more underscores the historical value of the structure and that the building MUST survive! So, it's no surprise that our school would also qualify for the National Registry!

Our Letter of Eligibility for National Registry

quote from The Texas Historical Commission regarding our South Park structure:
"an excellent example of an Collegiate Gothic style institutional building..."

Reuben Harrison Hunt
R.H. Hunt Company


Reuben Harrison Hunt
Credit: Chattanooga Regional History Museum
Copyright by The Tennessee Historical Society and
The University of Tennessee Press.

The Tennessee Encyclopedia of History and Culture

Reuben Harrison Hunt (1862-1937)

article from the Chattanoogan.com

Most of R.H. Hunt's Exquisite Buildings Live On
by John Shearer, posted February 22, 2007

Men of Texas, c 1932: R.H. Hunt of R.H. Hunt & Co


Works of R.H. Hunt

First United Methodist Church
1928 Ross Av. - 1926
Dallas, Texas


The congregation of the First United Methodist Church was founded in 1846. The congregation had three previous homes before Trinity Methodist and First Methodist merged and settled down in their current location. This building opened on February 7, 1926. The building was designed by Herbert M. Greene, and R.H. Hunt. Late English Perpendicular Gothic Revival would best describe the style of the church. Materials on the church include red brick, terra cotta, and cast stone. It is directly across the street from the Dallas Arts District and more specifically, the Dallas Museum of Art. http://www.dallasarchitecture.info/1stmethodist.htm


First Presbyterian Church (1926)
300 East Main Street
Built in 1926
Gothic Revival by R. H. Hunt & Associates
National Register of Historical Places, 1991
El Dorado, Arkansas

Go Eldorado.com


Temple B'Nai Sholom
Huntsville, Alabama

The Congregation was started in 1876, with many of the members from a German background. The writer believes that the Congregation was well aware of architectural developments taking place contemporaneously in Germany and the remainder of western Europe, and that they conveyed this aesthetic to the architect of the Temple, R. H. Hunt of Chattanooga.

The Romanesque style was believed to be suitable for experimentation, and this is exactly what Hunt did in this example with the diagonal floor plan axis and the folded planes of the wooden ceiling of the main worship space. This experimentation was a necessity because of the lack of design paradigms due to the aforementioned cultural history. There were few "model" synagogues to draw from http://www.templebnaisholom.org/html/history.html


Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Auditorium
399 McCallie Avenue
Chattanooga, Tennessee 37402


Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Auditorium opened on February 22, 1924, a living memorial to Hamilton County war veterans.
First proposed at a Kiwanis Club meeting in 1918, Memorial Auditorium was designed as a municipal auditorium and all-purpose exhibition hall. Built by the City of Chattanooga at a cost of $700,000, Memorial Auditorium was designed by renowned architect R.H. Hunt.



Alexandria Hall, Louisiana College, Alexandria, Louisiana

The architectural style of the college's (Louisiana College) first buildings is epitomized in Alexandria Hall, whose columns are symbols of LC to generations of students. The building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Alexandria Hall--Louisiana College (added 1986 - Building - #86001059)
Louisiana College, Pineville

Historic Significance: Architecture/Engineering
Architect, builder, or engineer: Hunt,R. H., Co., Yeager,C. Scott
Architectural Style: Classical Revival
Area of Significance: Architecture
Period of Significance: 1900-1924
Owner: Private
Historic Function: Education
Historic Sub-function: College
Current Function: Education
Current Sub-function: College
Alexandria Hall


Polk Street United Methodist Church
Amarillo, Texas

Type: Gothic Revival with Tudor details
Architects: R.H. Hunt Company of Dallas and Chattanooga
Groundbreaking: December 1926 - Completion: February 1928
Cost: $496,620


He also did work in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, Washington, and West Virginia. He even designed a Baptist school in China. This slideshow collection displays even more of his equisite work, most of which are found in the National Register of Historic Places.

Click here to view the photos individually and at your own pace.

South Park High School, Beaumont, Texas

Sadly, though through time the caretakers of our wonderful South Park building have changed out the windows from the original design, the magnificant structure still stands strong and proud! The City of Beaumont, as well as Beaumont Independent School District, should be most proud and honored to be the site of one of the buildings designed by such an esteemed and notable architect!

The building as it appeared in 1965: