Houston in Harris County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
Prominent real estate developer, publisher, statesman and banker Jesse H. Jones opened the Gulf Building in 1929 with Gulf Oil, National Bank of Commerce, and Sakowitz Brothers as primary tenants. Alfred C. Finn designed the 430-foot high Art Deco edifice with a six-story base topped by a tall tower that diminishes in size as it rises. The 37-floor, steel-frame structure remained Houston’s tallest skyscraper for 34 years. In 1986, the building, then owned by a successor bank, underwent a $50 million restoration. It was renamed the JPMorgan Chase Building in 2000 and continues to be a monument to the city’s growth, modernity and financial prosperity.
Marker is property of the state of Texas
Erected 2007 by Texas Historical Commission. (Marker Number 14042.)
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Architecture • Industry & Commerce. In addition, it is included in the Art Deco series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1929.
Location. 29° Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 712 Main Street, Houston TX 77002, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Site of the home of A.C. and Charlotte M. Allen (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Kress Building (about 300 feet away); Site of the Organization of Lady Washington Chapter, NSDAR (about 600 feet away); Site of Capitol of the Republic of Texas (about 600 feet away); Former Site of Capitol, Republic of Texas (about 600 feet away); Busy Corners (about 600 feet away); Auditorium Hotel (approx. 0.2 miles away); Christ Church Cathedral (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Houston.
More about this marker. There were once duplicate markers on this building. The marker at Main & Rusk has since been removed. Only the marker on the Travis Street side of the building remains.
Regarding Gulf Building. This was the tallest building west of the Mississippi when built and the tallest in Houston when I was a child, and remained tallest for more than thirty years.
John Allen's (the primary founder of Houston) wife's home was on this location. She's the person who named Houston, Texas.
Born in 1898, my uncle worked as an elevator operator in this building much of his life. (Yes, Virginia human beings once operated elevators.) He had polio in his twenties and found it difficult to get employment as anything other than this after that.
Also see . . .
1. Wikipedia Article on the Gulf Building. (Submitted on January 21, 2013, by Jim Evans of Houston, Texas.)
2. The Gulf Building in The Texas Handbook. (Submitted on January 21, 2013, by Jim Evans of Houston, Texas.)
3. Another article on the Gulf Building. (Submitted on January 21, 2013, by Jim Evans of Houston, Texas.)
Credits. This page was last revised on August 26, 2020. It was originally submitted on January 21, 2013, by Jim Evans of Houston, Texas. This page has been viewed 685 times since then and 4 times this year. Last updated on May 2, 2018, by Brian Anderson of Kingwood, Texas. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on January 21, 2013, by Jim Evans of Houston, Texas. 5. submitted on April 17, 2018, by Brian Anderson of Kingwood, Texas. 6, 7, 8. submitted on June 19, 2013, by Jim Evans of Houston, Texas. 9, 10. submitted on January 21, 2013, by Jim Evans of Houston, Texas. 11. submitted on June 19, 2013, by Jim Evans of Houston, Texas. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.