Kenneth Hafertepe


Dr. Kenneth Hafertepe is professor of museum studies and chair of the department. He has taught at Baylor since 2000, before which he was director of academic programs at Historic Deerfield, a museum of New England history and art. He is an authority of American material culture and decorative arts, and historic preservation, especially in Texas.

He has published seven books and co-edited two more. His most recent book, Historic Homes of Waco, Texas, won the Ron Tyler Award for Best Illustrated Book on Texas History and Culture from the Texas State Historical Association, as did his previous book, The Material Culture of Germans Texans. The latter also won awards from the Victorian Society of America, the Southeastern Society of Architectural Historians, the Philosophical Society of Texas, and the Conservation Society of San Antonio.

He has also published numerous articles, including essays for the Winterthur Portfolio, the Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, and the Southwestern Historical Quarterly. His topics have ranged from Thomas Jefferson’s ideas of beauty and the first generation of American banking houses to the German Texan landscape painter Hermann Lungkwitz and the restoration/reconstruction of the Spanish Governor’s Palace in San Antonio.

He has given lectures at many Texas museums and historic sites, including the Amon Carter Museum, the Alamo, the Winedale Historical Center, and the Bayou Bend Collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Twice he has been a speaker at the David B. Warren Symposium on American Material Culture and the Texas Experience, sponsored by Bayou Bend.

He served for 12 years on the board of the Committee on Museum Professional Training of the American Association (now Alliance) of Museums, the last four as chair. He also served on the program committee for two AAM annual meetings, and has served on a similar committee for then TSHA four times. He is a Fellow of the Texas State Historical Association.


A History of Ashton Villa

This volume tells the story of the stately Italianate Galveston mansion known as Ashton Villa. Built in 1859, Ashton Villa stood out in antebellum Galveston for its extensive use of new materials: brick and cast iron. It has weathered many a storm, including the Great Hurricane of 1900, when floodwaters invaded its first floor. Now as a historic house museum, Ashton Villa speaks eloquently about the lives and aspirations of an upper-class Texas family in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

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A History of the French Legation in Texas

This readable and thoroughly documented volume relates the fascinating story of the French Legation in Austin. The oldest house in the city, it was built in 1840-1841 as the residence of the French chargé d'affaires to the fledgling Republic of Texas. Alphonse Dubois, the self-styled "Count de Saligny," dazzled frontier Texans with elegant parties until he was recalled after less than a year in Austin.

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Abner Cook: Master Builder on the Texas Frontier

Abner Cook has long been acknowledged as the most important architect in antebellum Texas, but this extensively illustrated volume is the first to document fully his life and works. This well-told history of Cook's life also presents a vivid account of his city--nineteenth-century Austin.
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Historic Homes of Waco, Texas

n this thoughtful tour of 120 historic homes in Waco, Texas, architectural historian Kenneth Hafertepe gives readers a glimpse of the surprising variety of styles and stories captured in the houses built by and for Wacoans. Focusing on the period from the 1850s to about 1940, Hafertepe provides not only snapshots of the dwellings in which the people of Waco lived, but also informed hints about how they lived: everyone from the wealthiest merchants to the humblest day laborers.

Historic Homes of Waco, Texas incorporates material gleaned from city directories, fire insurance maps, census and cemetery records, and other archival and published sources to afford the most complete picture possible of how these homes came to be and what became of those who built and lived in them. Over 120 color photographs, also taken by the author, round out the descriptions.

The popular enthusiasm for the television series featuring Waco-area “fixer-uppers,” coupled with the burgeoning local industry generated by the show’s two charismatic hosts, has certainly boosted interest in historic homes and buildings in Waco. Indeed, Hafertepe has incorporated a handful of properties featured on the show among the houses profiled in this book. But beyond any current entertainment craze, Historic Homes of Waco, Texas will stand the test of time as an authoritative and entertaining tribute to these important structures and the people who inhabited them.

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The Material Culture of German Texans

German immigrants of the nineteenth century left a distinctive mark on the lifestyles and vernacular architecture of Texas. In this first comprehensive survey of the art and artifacts of German Texans, Kenneth Hafertepe explores how their material culture was influenced by their European roots, how it was adapted to everyday life in Texas, and how it changed over time—at different rates in different communities. The Material Culture of German Texans is about the struggle to become American while maintaining a distinctive cultural identity drawn from German heritage.
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Handbook Entries

Title Contributor Type
Cook, Abner Hugh Author
French Legation Author

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