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Rediscovering the Oleander City after Ike
When Hurricane Ike struck the upper Gulf Coast of Texas on Saturday, September 13 of 2008, it was rated as a Category Two storm in terms of wind strength and a Category Four storm in terms of its surge. The impact of its storm surge had already been felt in Galveston, as it pushed waters of the Galveston Bay into downtown, submerging the Strand Historic District in thirteen feet of water and debris, the worst flooding the city experienced since the great Storm of 1900. Yet despite the unimaginable devastation, Galveston is rebuilding.
Architectural historian Stephen Fox will accompany us on our tour of the Oleander City. We will visit a number of sites affected by Hurricane Ike to hear the stories of those who rode out the storm and of the valiant Galvestonians who are laboring to rebuild their city, despite extreme uncertainty as to its future. Participants will also visit architecturally and historically significant buildings of different periods to assess the damage they suffered. And we will hear from Galveston civic leaders and experts about the challenges and promises facing the city.
Stephen Fox is an architectural historian and a fellow of the Anchorage Foundation, University of Houston. He lectures on architectural history at Rice University and the University of Houston. His most recent book is The Country Houses of John F. Staub.
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