Robert Leon White (1898-1964)


White, Robert Leon

Personal Information

Birth/Death:    deceased 06/08/1964
Occupation:    American architect
Location:    Austin, TX

This record has not been verified for accuracy.

AIA Affiliation

Member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) 1924-decease

Biographical Sources

American Architects Directories:
Biographical listing in 1956 American Architects Directory
Biographical listing in 1962 American Architects Directory
Biographical information:
Contributed by the Alexander Architectural Archive, University of Texas Libraries, The University of Texas:
Robert Leon White (1898-1964) was born near Cooper, Texas and graduated as valedictorian from Cooper High School in 1916. During the summer of 1917, he attended the North Texas State Normal School. In 1918, he entered The University of Texas. After serving in the infantry during World War I, he completed his Bachelor of Science in Architecture in 1921. He subsequently worked for several architects in San Antonio, including Ralph Cameron and Phelps and DeWees before returning to The University of Texas for a master's degree in 1923. His thesis, completed in 1930, was a study of the Mission San Joseph de San Miguel de Aguayo (known as Mission San Jose). He married Viola Baker of Austin in 1922.
While attending graduate school at The University of Texas, he also served as instructor and adjunct professor. In 1924, he was appointed to the newly created post of "supervising architect" for the University wherein he coordinated the University's largest building campaign during the 1930s. Among the many buildings erected at this time were the Main Building, Goldsmith Hall, Home Economics, the Texas Union, and Hogg Auditorium. He served as supervising architect for the University until 1958.
In addition to his work for The University, White was responsible for the design of other important structures in Texas including the Central Christian Church in Austin (1928); the Masonic Grand Lodge Temple in Waco (1948); and numerous structures for the John Sealy Hospital in Galveston (1928-1937). White received the Sealy-Smith Foundation award for his design of the Outpatient Building in Galveston and the 1950 Gold Medal from the Texas Society of Architects for the Masonic Grand Lodge in Waco. He was a 32nd Degree Scottish Rite Mason and a Shriner. White died on July 28, 1964. He was survived by his wife, a daughter, Mrs. Cecil Heard of Austin, and a son, Robert Leon White Jr. of Georgia.

Related Records

Archival Holdings

The American Institute of Architects Archives
      Membership file may contain membership application, related correspondence. Contact the AIA Archives at archives@aia.org for further information.
Alexander Architectural Archive, University of Texas Libraries, The University of Texas
Robert Leon White Drawings, Mission San Jose, San Antonio and projects in Austin, Texas, 1920-1928
Robert Leon White served as supervising architect to the University of Texas from 1924 to 1958. This collection of architectural drawings (1920-1928) contains the work he executed in private practice outside the scope of his work for the University of Texas. It consists of the working drawings for the Central Christian Church in Austin (1928); measured drawings of Mission San Jose in San Antonio; and examples of his student work at The University of Texas (primarily watercolor renderings executed in the Beaux-Arts tradition).
Additional material in the Alexander Architectural Archive relating to Robert Leon White may be found in the papers of The University of Texas Supervising Architects Office in the University of Texas Buildings Collection, and the School of Architecture Archives.
For more information https://www.lib.utexas.edu/about/locations/alexander-architectural-archives