Col. Monroe M. Shipe

Monroe Martin Shipe was born in Kansas but moved to Austin in the late 1880's. Shipe's daughter Clotilde "Clo" married Peter Mansbendel.

Shipe established Austin's first planned neighborhood "Hyde Park". Located approximately twenty blocks from Austin's original town site, the area now known as Hyde Park was largely rural in character for much of the 19th century. The State Fair of Texas was held in the eastern sections of Hyde Park from 1875 until it was moved to Dallas in 1884. A portion of the State Fair's horseracing track is still reflected in the curved segment of 39th Street between Avenue F and Duval Street.

Established in 1891 by the Missouri, Kansas and Texas Land and Town Company, Hyde Park (originally "Shadowlawn") was marketed as an affluent suburb featuring large, majestic residences. Critical to the suburb's success was the establishment of an electric streetcar system. After the City Council awarded Shipe an exclusive franchise in 1890, and the first line was built on Congress Avenue and then north of Austin on Old Georgetown Road (now Guadalupe Street).

Hyde Park was initially marketed to Austin's elite in the 1890s, and Shipe achieved moderate success. The first houses built in the neighborhood were stylistic examples of late 19th-century domestic architecture. Many of them, such as the Oliphant-Walker House, were built in the Queen Anne style by locally prominent citizens. Noted sculptress Elisabeth Ney was among the first to buy property in the area, which was heavily promoted as confirmation that Hyde Park was attractive to Austin's most talented and prestigious citizens. Ney built a small castle-style studio, named Formosa, in northwest Hyde Park that is now home to the Elisabet Ney Museum.

By the late 1890s and early 1900s, however, the tone of Hyde Park's advertisements began to change. No longer was it promoted as an affluent residential area; instead, the suburb was described as an ideal place for the "working man or woman" to invest his or her earnings by purchasing a lot and building a residence.The key phrase in these promotions became affordability.Hyde Park’s architectural character shifted to smaller, more modest frame houses and bungalows. While steady characterized the area through the early 1900s, Hyde Park's greatest building boom occurred between 1924 and 1935. Shipe Park was dedicated in 1928.

Analysis of styles and dates of construction of domestic structures elucidates historic growth patterns within Hyde Park. The oldest houses are located near the State Hospital or along the former streetcar route on 40th Street. Later, as promotional emphasis shifted to a different socioeconomic group, more modest dwellings were constructed in areas somewhat removed from the streetcar line. Shipe passed away in 1925.

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