Littlefield Building, Austin

The Littlefied and Scarbrough buildings in Austin have lined the cityscape for over a century. In fact, these used to be the tallest buildings in Austin. The Littlefield Building actually as the tallest building between New Orleans and San Francisco during the early 1900s.

Littlefield was home to the American National Bank. Built by a former Confederate army major and president of the National Bank, George Littlefield started the groundwork for the new location of the bank in 1910. It was previously in the same location as the historic Driskill Hotel .

George Littlefield was a major player in the Austin area. During the first 50 years of the University of Texas, he was the college’s biggest financial contributor.

When the Littlefield building was completed in 1912, it was eight stories tall and had a garden rooftop for events. Then, he enclosed the top, creating a ninth story – effectively making it the tallest building in Austin.

To this day, the building is still home to office buildings.

Inscription

George Washington Littlefield (1842-1920) came to Texas from Mississippi in 1850. After serving in Terry’s Texas Rangers in the Civil War, he made his fortune ranching and driving cattle. He moved to Austin in 1883 and, in 1890, established the American National Bank, which included a ladies’ banking department. He hired architect C. H. Page, Jr., to design this Beaux Arts Classical building, which opened in 1912 with a rooftop garden. His bank was on the ground floor. For the corner entrance, he commissioned Tiffany’s of New York to cast bronze, Bas Relief doors by sculptor Daniel Webster. These were later donated to the University of Texas, of which Littlefield was a major benefactor.

Location

Latitude & Longitude: 30 15′ 58.043196″, -97° 44′ 31.835076″

Address: 601 North Congress, Austin, Texas

 

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