Price, Thomas

Thomas M. Price (1916-1998) was Galveston’s foremost modern architect. Price was a graduate of Virginia Polytechnic Institute (1938) and the Harvard Graduate School of Design (1941), where he studied under Walter Gropius and Marcel Breuer. After graduation he was a Professor of Architecture and Visiting Architecture Critic at Virginia Polytechnic Institute. Price was employed as a designer and draftsman for the prestigious firms of Gropius and Breuer, Hugh Stubbins, and Oscar Stonarov.During World War II, Price was commissioned Lieutenant Commander in the U.S. Navy. He trained at the M.I.T. School of Naval Architecture, and was stationed in Galveston, Texas. After the war, Price remained in Galveston and opened his architectural firm in 1947. His designs included private residences, hotels, motels, schools, a social club, a beach house and commercial buildings. His major works include Sealy & Smith professional building (1964, demolished 2007), Flagship Hotel (with Neuhaus & Taylor), Seahorse Motel (1956, demolished), and Galveston Artillery Club (1959). His work was not limited to Galveston; he designed the Lasher House in Houston, and buildings in Alvin, Bay City, Freeport, Hitchcock, Houston, and Webster, Texas. He also designed hotels in Asheville, North Carolina, Biloxi, Mississippi, Maraton, Florida, and San Francisco, California. Price’s work has been published in Architectural Record and Galveston: Architecture Guidebook. Price was also involved in early efforts to preserve Galveston’s 19th century architectural heritage. He was responsible for two pioneer preservation planning studies prepared for the city of Galveston: Galveston, Texas: Historical District Guide (1970) and Historical Development Plan for Galveston, Texas (1973). His professional and honorary affiliations include Phi Kappa Phi honorary scholastic society, Tau Beta Phi engineering society, Harvard University and Virginia Tech Alumni Associations, American Institute of Architects, Galveston Chamber of Commerce, and Galveston Historical Foundation. In retirement, Price served as consulting architect for the Admiral Nimitz Museum in Fredericksburg, Texas.