Collections Highlight: Stewart King’s Mission Landscapes

Stewart King (architect). Patio garden and circulation plan for Mission San Francisco de la Espada, Scheme 1, San Antonio, Texas. ca. 1957. Marker, pencil, and crayon on paper. 21.5 x 32.25 in. Stewart King collection. Alexander Architectural Archive.
Stewart King (architect). Patio garden and circulation plan for Mission San Francisco de la Espada, Scheme 1, San Antonio, Texas. ca. 1957. Marker, pencil, and crayon on paper. 21.5 x 32.25 in. Stewart King collection. Alexander Architectural Archive.

A contemporary of O’Neil Ford, San Antonio landscape architect Stewart King was an avid historic preservationist and advocate of indigenous plants whose involvement with the San Antonio Conservation Society as advisor and consultant led to his involvement in the preservation and restoration of the Old Spanish Missions. The example above is from the Mission San Francisco de la Espada, located in southeast San Antonio on the banks of the San Antonio River.

King is considered a pioneer in designing sustainable landscapes. His collection at the Alexander Architectural Archive contains documentation from 19 years of his professional career, featuring plant files, photographs and landscape plans, including 2,500 landscape architecture drawings.

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