Our Austin Story

About Our Austin Story

The Downtown Austin Alliance, in partnership with the Austin Parks and Recreation Department, is developing a comprehensive interpretive strategy for the three historic city squares: Brush, Republic, and Wooldridge.

THE GOAL IS TO FIND MEANINGFUL STORIES—GROUNDED IN THESE CIVIC SQUARES—THAT CONNECT TO THE PEOPLE AND PLACES OF AUSTIN.

Critical to the success of this project is the representation of Austin’s diverse community to ensure that our historic city squares tell the stories of all people. The stories collected will guide park programming and interpretive signage at the squares that reflects Austin’s multicultural and diverse heritage.

About Our Austin Story

The Downtown Austin Alliance, in partnership with the Austin Parks and Recreation Department, is developing a comprehensive interpretive strategy for the three historic city squares: Brush, Republic, and Wooldridge.

THE GOAL IS TO FIND MEANINGFUL STORIES—GROUNDED IN THESE CIVIC SQUARES—THAT CONNECT TO THE PEOPLE AND PLACES OF AUSTIN.

Critical to the success of this project is the representation of Austin’s diverse community to ensure that our historic city squares tell the stories of all people. The stories collected will guide park programming and interpretive signage at the squares that reflects Austin’s multicultural and diverse heritage.

  • Republic Square

    about 2 months ago
    Auction oaks

    Edwin Waller’s original design of Austin consisted of a grid with a central square (Capitol Square) and four smaller, secondary “public squares.” In 1888, the squares were named Brush, Hamilton (now Republic), Bell (now Wooldridge), and Hemphill (no longer a public square).

    By 1905, the neighborhood to the west and south of Republic Square largely identified with Austin’s Mexican population. Three “Mexican” churches were established within a block or two of the square, including Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church. For many years, locals would call this square "Guadalupe Square." Read More Here



    Edwin Waller’s original design of Austin consisted of a grid with a central square (Capitol Square) and four smaller, secondary “public squares.” In 1888, the squares were named Brush, Hamilton (now Republic), Bell (now Wooldridge), and Hemphill (no longer a public square).

    By 1905, the neighborhood to the west and south of Republic Square largely identified with Austin’s Mexican population. Three “Mexican” churches were established within a block or two of the square, including Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church. For many years, locals would call this square "Guadalupe Square." Read More Here



  • Brush Square

    about 2 months ago
    Longhorn

    Brush Square has been an afterthought for most of its history. Our Austin Story is going to help transform Brush from obscure to obvious.

    Brush Square, like Republic and Wooldridge, struggled in its early years to find a purpose. During the Civil War, Seba Bogart Brush stored cotton and other merchandise on the property. Brush traded in cotton, and during the Civil War he made a small fortune shipping cotton to the Union. The city named the square for Brush after his untimely death at the age of 47.

    Read More Here


    Brush Square has been an afterthought for most of its history. Our Austin Story is going to help transform Brush from obscure to obvious.

    Brush Square, like Republic and Wooldridge, struggled in its early years to find a purpose. During the Civil War, Seba Bogart Brush stored cotton and other merchandise on the property. Brush traded in cotton, and during the Civil War he made a small fortune shipping cotton to the Union. The city named the square for Brush after his untimely death at the age of 47.

    Read More Here


  • Wooldridge Square

    about 2 months ago
    Wooldridge2

    Wooldridge Square lay dormant for its first 70 years. Three of Austin’s first churches were built overlooking the square, the handiwork of early Austin civic leaders such as Jacob Fontaine and Swante Palm. In those early years the square itself remained fallow, yet not forgotten.

    In 1909, Austin Mayor A.P. Wooldridge, animated by civic pride and backyard boosterism, inspired the community to clean the square and construct a bandstand for public engagements. Over the next century, Wooldridge Square would host Booker T. Washington, Minnie Fisher Cunningham, Lyndon Johnson, and scores of Texas political aspirants reaching out to voters from the...Read more

    Wooldridge Square lay dormant for its first 70 years. Three of Austin’s first churches were built overlooking the square, the handiwork of early Austin civic leaders such as Jacob Fontaine and Swante Palm. In those early years the square itself remained fallow, yet not forgotten.

    In 1909, Austin Mayor A.P. Wooldridge, animated by civic pride and backyard boosterism, inspired the community to clean the square and construct a bandstand for public engagements. Over the next century, Wooldridge Square would host Booker T. Washington, Minnie Fisher Cunningham, Lyndon Johnson, and scores of Texas political aspirants reaching out to voters from the bandstand. Read More Here