I’ve spent two decades living and traveling the world and that hasn’t ceased. The more I’ve traveled the more I’ve realized how important it has been to understand where one comes from; delving deeper into the environment and family narrative both past and present. It is the context by which we can truly enjoy other cultures. Several weeks ago, together with Eric Explores the World, we transcended some time into a bygone era, Dallas’ Popular Titche-Goettinger Past Importance to Present
Exploring Downtown Dallas, Texas:
While exploring the underground tunnels of Dallas, Tx (check back next month for posts about that), we stumbled across an old stairway which led up to a door and entrance hallway of what superficially seemed like it might be an “abandoned” building. The entrance and building was beautiful with intriguing dark carvings and we wanted a closer look.
The Titche-Goettinger Building:
However, at the time we continued our initial map-guided underground tunnel exploration, later returning to the building in question. It was the Titche-Goettinger Building, still very much alive still vibrantly detailed in an Italian Florentine Renaissance style. Titche is on the National Register of Historic Places. Now apartments, every flat has some original items from the building. We went inside and the loveliest of ladies, Stephanie Tutt, spent not only an hour talking with us about the history and current life of the building but she gave us a special tour. What I learned was that the Titche-Goettinger Building used to be a department store that my grandmother and mom frequented growing up in Dallas.
Watch our video with pictures and descriptions from our experience exploring The Titche-Goettinger Building. Click here to read more details about the history, our tour, and describing our pictures and video over on Eric Explores the World blog. If you have any questions, about the Titche-Goettinger Building, after reading my post, such as WHY was there a fan in that old elevator or about the role this building played in helping our servicemen during World War II, Eric’s post explains all of that in detail!
Dallas Popular Titche-Goettinger Past Importance to Present:
My Mom Tells Her Story:
“Oh yes, The Titche-Goettinger Building; I remember my mother would always put on her finest of hats and gloves. Back then, all the ladies wore hats and gloves out in public. My mother would tell us, ‘Be on your best manners’. And dressed in our Sunday clothes we would catch a streetcar into downtown Dallas. My mother, your grandmother, loved the Titche-Goettinger Building. I remember that it was one of the biggest buildings and where everyone went for dresses, hats and gloves. And while we walked around downtown Dallas, every time you walked by somebody, people would smile, say hello and you would say hello back.”
The Experience of Walking Through the Titche-Goettinger Building:
My Past Became My Present:
To walk such a building in downtown Dallas, encompassing a multigenerational history going back 70+ years gave me a personal connection to my family history and local Dallas history; a grounded feeling of vitality and resilience. I also had my three boys with me for our adventure. Our world is changing so fast, I loved gifting a piece of the past to my children in present day, real-time, a special time.
A Family Narrative Gives Children Emotional Health:
Research from psychologists Marshall Duke and Robyn Fiyush, Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, shows that the more children know about their family history the stronger their self-esteem and sense of control they will have over their lives.
Knowing Your Family Narrative:
Family Narrative of My Grandmother:
I love the stories my mom has told me about my grandmother who I’m said to be the “spitting image of” in character and mind. Born and raised in Bonham, TX, a farm girl, at the age of 18, my grandmother independently took a suitcase and a one way lift on a bus to Dallas. She was the only family member to leave Bonham for the big city and in the early 1900’s that was an extremely courageous venture for any woman. She was a jokester and a vigorous woman who loved to laugh, also a classy and wise lady. Adventurous like her, as a young woman, I packed a bag and left my city to move abroad without knowing anyone or having any idea what I would do except work hard once there; Moving to Ireland!
Family Narrative of My Mother:
After visiting the Titche-Goettinger Building, I sat down with my mom for a little family narrative review:
My mom’s short story of Dallas, “I was born in Florence Nightingale Hospital, raised in Oak Cliff and went to W.H. Adamson High School. While that area is all being revived on the east end which is the Bishop Arts District, back during my childhood west of Jefferson Avenue which is the Winnetka Heights Historic District was a lively and quaint homestead of Dallas. Jefferson Avenue had streetcars, lots of mom & pop stores, Sears and Roebuck, and a jewelry store where everyone bought their class rings. Back then most families had just one car and the earner of the family usually drove that car so streetcars were needed to get around by other family members.”
Have you had a day or moment walking in the footsteps of the past present day from a grandparent or parent?
“If you don’t recount your family history, it will be lost. Honor your own stories and tell them too. The tales may not seem very important, but they are what binds families and makes each of us who we are.” Madeleine L’Engle
“Do not forget the things your eyes have seen or let them slip from your heart as long as you live. Teach them to your children and your children’s children.” Deuteronomy 4:9