Houston -- a river of history runs through it, writer finds
The project has taken him more than a decade to complete.
Aulbach has a lifelong connection with the area, as he was born in Houston, raised in the Heights and educated at St. Thomas High School. After attending Rice University and spending some time in the Army, Aulbach finished another degree at the University of Chicago, but his heart remained in Texas.
“I rushed back to Houston as fast as I could,” Aulbach said.
He has remained in the city ever since, working in the oil and gas industry for 17 years, then as a Houston city employee for 18 years until his retirement in 2008. Meanwhile, he was also spending time working on side projects that would serve as a springboard for his new Buffalo Bayou book.
“I got interested in writing way back in the '80s,” Aulbach said. “I actually have five river guides in print. I wrote canoeing guides to rivers in West Texas.”
In 2000, a friend suggested he change his focus from West Texas to something closer to home: Buffalo Bayou. What started out as a modest river guide turned into something much greater, thanks to years of dedication, hard work and the help of his research partner, Linda Gorski.
“When I started working on that, I found out that there was way too much history along Buffalo Bayou to be in a 100-page guide,” Aulbach said. “After 12 years, I finally decided it needed to be published.”
Last year, the 752-page book, which Aulbach describes as “brick-size,” became available to the public. He emphasizes that there can be a sort of interactive element to the book, as many of the historical features discussed can still be seen along the river.
“The history is what I wanted to bring out, and the history along the bayou still has remnants from the 19th and 20th centuries,” Aulbach said. “As you walk along the bayou, it’s not like you just have to imagine the history. You can actually see remnants of it. That’s a good way to make history real to people.”
The book can be purchased online at Amazon.com, and it can also be found at a number of stores throughout Texas and several other states.
About Louis Aulbach
Community Connection: Raised in Heights area
Fast Fact: Provides historical commentary for Buffalo Bayou Partnership
Chris Marshall is a freelance writer. He can be reached at email@example.com.
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