In The Weeds, 8/22/18: Ford-A-Palooza!

We’ve been working with Herbert Holl and Meredith Buie of UNT on the Square, City Historic Preservation Officer Roman McAllen, City Planner Sean Jacobsen, The Chamber of Commerce, TWU and UNT Special Collections, The Alexander Architectural Archives at UT Austin, and many others over the last year planning the new exhibit at UNT on the Square focusing on the life and works of noted Texas architect and former Dentonite, O’Neil Ford. This has been an amazing journey with some very passionate and dedicated preservationists, historians, and archivists.

We are incredibly fortunate in Denton to have so many historic O’Neil Ford structures to enjoy, both private and public. Every book about and expert on Texas architecture lists Ford near the very top in influence. We have become custodians of these important, one-of-a-kind buildings and it is hoped that we will continue to preserve them for generations to come.

As part of this celebration, we have a small exhibit at the Emily Fowler Library dedicated to Ford collaborators; brother Lynn Ford and Martha and Beaumont Mood of San Antonio.

There are so many facets to the O’Neil Ford story, that eliminating works or people for space considerations is not a fun task. Lynn and the Moods were so integral to Ford’s vision that they deserve tribute generally and especially because so much of their work is still very visible in Denton.

           The details of the exhibit are as follows:

     “O’Neil Ford: The Architect In His Works and Words”

    August 24th-Sept. 22nd. UNT On The Square, 109 N. Elm St.

   Opening Reception and Gallery Talk by Architectural Historian

   Stephen Fox, Friday August 31st 6-8:00 pm.

      Panel Discussion on Ford, Saturday, Sept 1st, 10:00am-12:00pm.

As a brief refresher on O’Neil Ford in Denton, the following is a representative list of buildings and homes extant as of 2018: Little Chapel in the Woods (TWU 1939); Civic Center Complex (Quakertown Park 1967-69); First Christian Church (1959); Gertrude Gibson House (1929); Selwyn School campus (1965-1969); etc. We have a collection of books, pamphlets, and news articles on the life and works of Ford at the Emily Fowler Library, as well.

Our exhibit at the O’Neil Ford-designed Emily Fowler Library focuses on Lynn’s wood carving and the ceramic fixtures designed and manufactured by Martha and Beau Mood. Here are a few pics of that exhibit and some Lynn Ford and Mood lighting visible here at the Fowler Library to whet your appetite:





If you decide to come by the Fowler Library to view these works, please come to the Special Collections Desk and speak to a staff member and we’ll be happy to point them out and provide access, as some are in the staff area and others may not be obvious to folks who are not as familiar with our library.

We plan to add to this blog post as the main exhibit at UNT on the Square progresses through September 2018, especially to document the Opening Reception and Panel Discussion on Labor Day Weekend. Please stay tuned!


Written by Chuck Voellinger,







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