The Great Drafting Table in the Sky (Part 4): North and South

(Part 1: “Some Pretty Good Work”)

Shhh. The angels Sanguinet and Staats are in Heaven, looking down at Fort Worth and remembering some of the buildings they designed. Let’s listen in:

Sanguinet (peering down north of the Trinity River): “You and I didn’t design just commercial buildings, Carl. Nosiree. We also designed schools and churches. In all parts of town.

“For example, look there—west of North Main Street. North Fort Worth High School. We did that one in 1918. It was the city’s second high school. In 1935, just before I died, the Works Progress Administration added the sandstone retaining wall, with its three cast-stone lions.”

Staats (pointing with his pencil): “And a few miles south, in 1910 we did Our Lady of Victory Academy on Hemphill Street for the Sisters of St. Mary of Namur, who were founded in Belgium in 1819. Great buncha gals. I see them up here on bingo night. They told me that OLV now is a residential complex for Fort Worth’s creative community.”

Sanguinet: “And speaking of St. Mary, not far away, on Magnolia Avenue, is one of my favorites—St. Mary of the Assumption Catholic Church. That one was in 1924, Romanesque revival style. We had been partners twenty-three years by then, Carl.”

Staats (putting an ethereal hand on Sanguinet’s ethereal shoulder): “And good years they were, Marshall. We worked hard. We’ve earned our eternal rest.”

Sanguinet: “Rest? Nonsense. Let’s get back to work on those designs for the new cloudbank for the Big Client Himself.”

Staats (continuing to stare down at the near South Side): “Wait. I see another one. See that roof? That building was originally the Sixth Ward School and then Stephen F. Austin Elementary School. You designed the original building in 1892; after you and I partnered, we designed the north addition in 1909. I understand from recent arrivals in Heaven that the building is now headquarters of Williamson-Dickie.”

Sanguinet: “Yes. As I recall, they make pants.”

Staats (shoving his hands into the waist pockets of his alabaster-white robe and flicking his wrists, causing the robe to billow out): “You know, I don’t miss pants one bit, Marshall. Robes are much more comfortable, much roomier.”

Staats pulls a half-eaten submarine sandwich from one pocket of his robe.

Sanguinet (rolling his eyes): “Work, Carl, work.”

Part 5: Fire and Brimstone

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