City of Houston

Houston’s Dowling Street To Be Renamed Emancipation Avenue

A Houston street named for a Confederate officer will be renamed Emancipation Avenue.

The northern Third Ward lies just southeast of downtown Houston.

A Houston street named for a Confederate officer will be renamed Emancipation Avenue.

The Houston City Council on Wednesday approved changing the name of Dowling Street in the historic Third Ward. Richard “Dick” Dowling was a businessman and Confederate commander in the Civil War.

The street leads to Emancipation Park. The site originally was the only municipal park available to blacks, who pooled their money in 1872 to buy the property to celebrate their freedom.

Emancipation Park, 1970’s, Dowling at Elgin Streets, 3rd Ward

The renaming to Emancipation Avenue will coincide with marking the redevelopment of Emancipation Park, which is undergoing $33 million in renovations. Ceremonies will be part of Juneteenth.

On June 19, 1865, federal troops arrived in Galveston to declare Texas slaves free. It was more than two years after President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation.

 

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