Littlefield House

24th Street and Whitis Avenue
University of Texas at Austin
National Register of Historic Places
Designed by architect James Wahrenberger of San Antonio for cattle baron Major George Washington Littlefield, the house is the best example of eclectic Victorian design surviving in Austin. At his death, Littlefield left his home and carriage house to the University of Texas at Austin. Over the years, the University used the house in many ways, including installing a firing range in the attic during WWII, and subsequently as the Music Department.

The university engaged our firm to develop a comprehensive facilities program that identifies prioritized maintenance and conservation needs for the house, carriage house and site. Design challenges included reconfiguring mechanical and lighting systems to protect valuable artifacts, collections and furnishings while providing comfort for staff and visitors. The Facilities Program also calls for sensitive replacement of electrical, communication, and security systems, structural reinforcement, life safety and accessibility improvements, and restoration of historic finishes. The planning effort was followed by the development of plans and specifications for the restoration of the slate roof and copper flashing details.

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  • Littlefield House Tower
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Key Issues
• Slate roof restoration and corrections to the failing roof drainage system at the Littlefield House are specified, delineated and awaiting funding
• Metal conservation is needed at the tower, iron cresting and decorative metal details
• Structural repairs are needed at exterior porches
• Period interior finishes are in need of conservation
• Reproduction carpet is in need of replacement
• The building envelope of Pecos red sandstone is in need of conservation and repair
• New building systems integration has been planned through the Facilities Program process