Austin History Center

Rex D. Kitchens Construction Co. Records and Drawings

An Inventory of the Collection

Overview of the Collection

Creator: Kitchens, Rex (Rexford) D.
Title: Rex D. Kitchens Construction Co. Records and Drawings
Abstract: The collection documents the activities of Rex D. Kitchens Construction Co. which specialized in commercial and industrial building in Austin, Texas between the 1930s and the 1990s. The company was founded by Rex Kitchens, a lifelong Travis County resident. The collection consists of 107 sets of drawings and a limited amount of specifications and project manuals.
Identification: AR.2009.023
Quantity: 1 linear foot (1 box) of textual materials and approximately 2400 drawings.
Location: Architectural Archives
Language: The records are in English.
Repository: Austin History Center, Austin Public Library,
810 Guadalupe, , PO BOX 2287, , Austin, TX 78768

Biographical Note

Rex (Rexford) D. Kitchens, a lifelong Travis County resident, was born in 1905 and died in Austin on December 1, 1965. He was a builder, banker, rancher and civic leader. He started Rex D. Kitchens Construction Co. in 1933. He pioneered the light weight pre-cast concrete structure field in Texas following World War II. Examples of building accomplishments in Austin are the Commodore Perry Hotel, Perry-Brooks Building, Austin National Bank, Austin Savings and Loan Building, the Capital Plaza Shopping Center, and the fire training tower on W. 1st St. Rex D. Kitchens Construction Co. also constructed the main building at Texas Technological College as well as several of the Texas Instruments buildings.

Kitchens was active in the civic community and was on the board of directors of Austin Savings and Loan Association, officer of the Austin Chamber of Commerce, officer of the Austin Chapter of Associated General Contractors and director of the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association. His interest in the community led him to provide some of his land for baseball and softball fields. Five fields used by the Manchaca Optimist Club are named for him, including the Rex Kitchens Youth Athletic Complex. In 1978, the fire training tower was renamed the Burford Tower and Kitchens Memorial Chimes.

Scope and Contents

The collection consists of approximately 2400 drawings representing 107 projects and 1 linear foot of specifications. The specifications include:

  • Old American Bank Building - Renovations. RK-0080.
  • Amtrak Station Renovation. RK-0030.
  • Lease Space for Drs. Brumley, Elledge and Akin. RK-0003.
  • Gracy Title Co. RK-0012.
  • Hyde Park Baptist Church-Additions. RK-0013.
  • Luby's Cafeteria number 4. RK-0039.
  • St. Edward's University - Theater for the Fine and Performing Arts. RK-0032.
  • Southwest Airlines. RK-0059.
  • Southwestern Bell. Homestead 451. RK-0010.
  • Southwestern Bell. Additions and Alterations to Austin Division Office. RK-0011
  • Stassney Square Shopping Center. RK-0027A, B, and C.
  • Store Renovation. Studtman's. RK-0009.
  • Texas Instruments Austin. D.S.D. Building. RK-0105.
  • Texas Instruments Austin. D.S.D. Building. Appendix Item No. 26. RK-0106.
  • Texas Instruments Austin. P.W.B. Building Expansion. RK-0101A and B.
  • Austin Nature Center. RK-0040.

The majority of the drawings (1954-1992) document commercial or industrial projects. A wide variety of architects, both local and national, designed the structures represented in the drawings series. They included:

  • Robert Prado
  • R.S. Colley
  • Barnes Landes Goodman Youngblood
  • Emerson & Fehr
  • Page Southerland Page
  • White, Dolce & Barr
  • Campbell & Patterson
  • Wilson Stoeje Martin
  • Jack K. Dempsey
  • Dahze & Davis
  • Shefelman Nix
  • Brooks Barr Graeber & White
  • Chartier Newton & Associates
  • Giesecke Kuehne & Brooks
  • Fehr and Granger
  • George Dahl, Inc.
  • Simpson Associates, Inc.
  • Summey, Weeter & Associateds
  • Austin Design Associates, Inc.
  • James W. Crow
Included in this collection are designs for banks such as the Allied Bank Building, Austin National Bank (main building and several branches), Austin Savings and Loan, Community National Bank, First Republic Bank and retail centers such as the Highland Mall, Capital Plaza Shopping Center, Cherry Creek Plaza and Stassney Square Shopping Center. Also included are a small amount of ecclesiastical projects including the All Saints Episcopal Church, Episcopal Theological Seminary of the Southwest, and the Holy Word Evangelical Lutheran Church. Because of the lack of project files accompanying the drawings it is unknown how many of these structures represented in the drawings were built by Rex D. Kitchens Construction Co. or if the drawings were only used for the bidding process.


Arranged into 2 series:
I. Project Specifications
II. Drawings


Restrictions on Access

Open to all users.

Restrictions on Use


Index Terms

This record series is indexed under the following controlled access subject terms.
Kitchens, Rex (Rexford)D.
Rex D. Kitchens Construction Company.
Austin Chamber of Commerce.
St. Edward's University (Austin, Tex.)
Texas Instruments (Firm).
Southwest Airlines Co.
Austin (Tex.)
Travis County (Tex.)
Document Types:
Printed Material

Administrative Information

Custodial History

The collection was donated by William P. Rainey in 1996. The materials were found in a warehouse that once belonged to Rex. D. Kitchens Construction Co.

Preferred Citation

Rex D. Kitchens Construction Co. Records and Drawings (AR.2009.023). Austin History Center, Austin Public Library, Texas.

Acquisition Information

Donor #: DO/1996/007

Donation Date: 1996

Processing Information

Finding aid was prepared by Ruth Baker in 1997 and updated by Molly Hults in 2010 and Kathryn Garvey in 2012.

Finding aid was encoded by Evan Usler on June 5, 2010.

Detailed Description of the Collection

II. Project Specifications, 1970-1980

1 Specifications and Project Manuals, 1970s-1980s

II. Drawings, 1954-1992

View an index of the architectural drawings here.