Tag Archives: wooldridge square

Keep Austin Creative

1968 Wooldridge Square poster by Jim Franklin

What is it that attracts creative people? Jobs, for sure. But what is needed before the jobs appear? A creative environment is a good place to start.

Austin began its transformation into one of America’s great cities in an inauspicious way. The Austin of today began with the music of yesterday.

On September 29, 1968, local musicians held a benefit at Wooldridge Square. Jim Franklin, a local artist, designed a poster for that event. With the poster, Jim introduced what would become the new Austin’s symbol – the armadillo. With this event, the new Austin, the Austin of Keep Austin Weird, had a birthplace and a brand.

Uncommon Knowledge

Wooldridge Square at night ©2017 Ted Lee Eubanks

The Austin History Center (AHC) occupies the 1933 Austin public library building overlooking Wooldridge Square. The library moved next door to the John Henry Faulk building in 1979, and freed the space for the AHC. All of this I know. This is common knowledge.

But, what came before? What happened during that century between Austin’s founding and the construction of this building? What isn’t commonly known? What past hides behind the facade of the present?