The Flower Hill Foundation exists to honor the late Jane Smoot’s vision to celebrate an Austin founding family of civil servants; preserve one of the city’s last historic homesteads; and empower, inspire, and engage the diverse Austin community of today and tomorrow.
The Flower Hill homestead and its 1.38 acres of historic landscape enjoy great local, state, and national significance architecturally, historically, and culturally. Its law library belonged to Lawrence Kelley Smoot, a Texas Supreme Court librarian and reporter, and the longest serving civil servant in Texas history. The theological library belonged to Rev. Dr. R.K. Smoot, the family patriarch, and founder of the Austin School of Theology, now the Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, whom also conducted short-story writer, O. Henry’s wedding in Flower Hill’s parlor.
Continuously occupied by a single middle-class family from 1877-2013, Flower Hill possesses rare comprehensive documentation of three generations’ worth of American life, records including diaries, letters, oral history recordings and video tours maintained by the late Miss Jane Smoot, a celebrated teacher, world-traveler, and the last family member to live at the homestead. Architecturally, the home and 6 orginal outbuildings narrate another history, as its original plans were drawn from a survey of Southern vernacular styles, and were later modified over the centuries to the evolving trends and principles of American structure and design.
1316 W. 6th Street (map)
Set to open in 2018 and will operate by appointment only.