In The Interest Of Public Health & Safety
There Will Be No
Mother's Day Home Tour
Again This Year
After deliberations with vendors, sponsors, the Dallas City Council, and district homeowners, the Board of Directors of The Swiss Avenue Historic District has cancelled this year’s Home Tour.
Due to the complexity of planning the tour (it is a months-long process that begins in the winter of the previous year), and because there was no way of predicting what the Covid situation would be by the time the tour occurs in early May, the Board really had no option other than to cancel for 2021.
We hope to be back to normal in 2022.
We look forward to seeing you then.
Yard Of The Year
Swiss avenue historic district
6005 Swiss Avenue
The Residence Of
Marianne & Tim Howells
The beauty of the charming home at 6005 Swiss Avenue is greatly enhanced by consistent displays of rich, colorful plantings as well as tasteful seasonal decorations such as pumpkins and gourds lining the steps in the fall. This landscape effectively combines bright colors in the focal point of the sunny area near the house, framed by cool greens of the surrounding shady areas. The plantings show great variety, including both the usual and the unusual, such as native plants. The textured green of carefully clipped ivy on the façade of the house reflects the perfectly groomed lawn. Exemplary maintenance and attention to detail in this yard make it a constant standout within the district—always a place to slow down and admire when passing by at any time of the year.
swiss avenue historic district
yard of the month
Sandra & Colin Fite
5611 Swiss Avenue
Judging was tough this month as we are at the nadir of the growing season. The gardener committee was split on residences displaying an earnest attempt at color.
The residence of Sandra and Colin Fite at 5611 Swiss was finally chosen for the brave display. Dusty Miller (Senecio cineraria) sits behind the multicolored pansies filling the beds in front. Sandra designs and purchases the plants and her loyal gardener of 24 years, Javier Campos, does the heavy lifting. Annual color including cala lilies which reside in pots on the porch. Ligustrum once resided on each corner of the house, however because of the harsh winter they will soon be replaced with yaupon holly topiaries. As always, a $100 gift certificate to Tallulah & HESS courtesy of our generous neighbor Elizabeth Mast is also awarded to this month’s Yard of the Month winner.
The judging committee noted, “This house always has a beautiful show of seasonal color to greet passersby and visitors. This month, the display of pansies and other cool season annuals stands out above all other seasonal beds in the neighborhood for the lush robustness of the plants, which demonstrates horticultural skill.”
Pictured: Sandra & Colin Fite
Swiss Avenue Historic District
March 2021 Edition
Featured In This Edition:
Surviving Spring Storms
Meet Your Neighbor: Wesley Powell
Kids Who Rock: Luke McCavit
Yard Of The Year:
6005 Swiss Avenue
Meet Rene Toudouze
Click on the magazine cover image to download this month's edition.
For past issues, visit the OCCASIONAL link under the NEWS/EVENTS tab above.
A BIT About Our District
The Swiss Avenue Historic District, in Old East Dallas, is a diverse neighborhood containing the finest collection of Early 20th Century residential architecture in the entire Southwest. Established in 1905 by real-estate developer, Robert Munger, it was designated in 1973 as the first historic district in the City of Dallas. It is an official Dallas Landmark District and, in 1974, the entire District was listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The boundaries of The Swiss Avenue Historic District include portions of some of the city's earliest streets:
Beacon Street • Bryan Parkway • Bryan Street
La Vista Drive • Live Oak Street • Swiss Avenue
La Vista Drive
Live Oak Street
Please join us for our first in-person board meeting in over a year! Depending on your comfort level, you are welcome to wear masks and socially distance. Bring a lawn chair or blanket to sit on. We will be discussing the state of the District following 2 years without our annual home tour, which provides the bulk of our operating capital.
Committee Chairs will present their budget requirements and Block Captains will share their blocks' specific needs. Suggestions, recommendations and questions will follow. This is an important meeting that we encourage all neighbors to attend.
WE LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING EVERYONE IN THE PARK!
SAHD APRIL BOARD MEETING
Tuesday, April 20th
6:30 - 8:00 PM
In person - Outdoors
At Savage Park
With Profound Gratitude
Historic preservation throughout the City of Dallas exists largely due to the exemplary efforts of our neighbor, our friend, and our District's most ardently devoted advocate,
Virginia Savage McAlester
Virginia dedicated her life's work to preserving, protecting and promoting the historic dignity of her native hometown. She was the nation's foremost authority on historic architecture; she was instrumental in the founding of our District, which became this City's first Historic District; and she spearheaded efforts throughout our community that have impacted and improved the quality of life for us all.
Her contributions will reverberate for generations to come. For that, and for so much more, we are profoundly grateful.
Virginia Savage McAlester
May 13, 1943 – April 9, 2020
THE BRILLIANCE OF VIRGINIA SAVAGE McALESTER
In tribute to our dear friend and neighbor, Virginia Savage McAlester, we invite you to view the video below, featuring a lecture on the History of Munger Place presented by Virginia at the Hall of State in Fair Park on May 18, 2017
STEP BACK TO A SIMPLER TIME
JOIN US ON THE FIRST SATURDAY OF EACH MONTH
FOR LIVING HISTORY TOURS AT ALDREDGE HOUSE
The Aldredge House invites you to travel back with us to a simpler place and time; to a Gilded Age steeped in gentility, refinement, and the finer things in life. Join us on the First Saturday of each month for Living History Tours that will transport you to back to the early days of Swiss Avenue when, in 1917, West Texas Rancher, Will Lewis, commissioned renowned architect Hal Thomson to design and build this magnificent French Eclectic Mansion as a wedding gift for his Debutante Bride, Willie Newberry.
Actors outfitted in period costumes portray individuals who played significant roles in the Aldredge House's illustrious history, including its earliest owners, their maids, their chauffeurs, and even their family physician.
DOORS OPEN AT 10 AM FOR HOUSE TOURS. LIVING HISTORY TOURS BEGIN AT 11 AM
Due to ongoing public health concerns, FIRst Saturday tours
of the Aldredge house are postponed until further notice.
We Hope to resume activities as soon as the all-clear is given.
As you walk our scenic neighborhood, you may have noticed bronze plaques installed near the sidewalks in front of some of the homes. Our neighbor, Virginia Dupuy, worked with City Hall to obtain approval for SAHD residents to install these plaques on their properties.
The purpose of the plaques is to identify the year of a home's construction, its architectural style, the architect/builder (if known), and the original owner. If there's room remaining on the plaques, a fact or two about the history of the home or its original owners can be added. Although there are only a handful of these plaques in place today, visitors walking our District frequently stop to read them.
If you are interested in obtaining one of these plaques for your property, the process is relatively simple. A Certificate of Appropriateness is required. City Staff can approve the wording without going before the full Landmark Commission but you will be asked to provide the source of the facts you will be displaying.
Two good, reliable sources of information are the fileson our Historic District located at Preservation Dallas, and a Masters Thesis available at the Dallas Public Library downtown. The 3-volume thesis, titled, "history and Guide to the Swiss Avenue Historic District", was written in the 1970s by three architecture students at UT Arlington: Robert L. Canavan, Patricia T. Canavan, and Judy S. Dooley.
Erie Landmark Company is the manufacturer of the plaques (637 Hempfield Hill Road, Columbia, PA 17512, Telephone: 800-874-7848). The cost of one plaque is approximately $250. Under the agreement with the City, the plaques are to be installed on a flat concrete pad that can be easily fabricated by your handyman.