Constructed in 1892-3, and located on Heights Boulevard at 18th Street, the Cooley mansion was one of the first houses built in Houston Heights by the Omaha and South Texas LandCompany. D.D. Cooley, a descendant of early English settlers of Massachusetts, came here from Nebraska as the treasurer and promoter of the Omaha and South Texas Land Company.
The house stood on a ½ acre lot at 18th and Heights Boulevard. When the electric trolley lines were installed on the Boulevard, D.D. Cooley connected the electric lines to his house, making it one of the first in the Heights to have the modern convenience of electricity. Mr. and Mrs. D.D. Cooley were the parents of three sons, Denton, Arthur and Ralph. After his father died in 1933, Arthur continued to live in the house. After Arthur’s death in 1962, the grandsons, Ralph Jr. and Dr. Denton Cooley, were unsuccessful in selling the house at an asking price of $45,000. Eventually the grandsons were forced to sell it to Olshan Demolishing Company, who dismantled it and sold the remnants.
Pictured here is the Cooley house in October 1965, a few months before it was demolished. The lot where the Cooley house once stood remained vacant until 1979, when it was purchased by the Houston Heights Association for the purpose of constructing Marmion Park, named in honor of the last mayor of Houston Heights, J.B. Marmion. The park’s award-winning Kaiser Pavilion was designed to emulate the Cooley home’s unique turret. (Photograph courtesy of Houston Public Library, HMRC).