The Priliminary Research Process

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Through my research at the Briscoe center I became interested in discovering the connection between the Macatee family and their company W. L. Macatee and Sons Building Materials with the founding of Houston. It became evident when looking through sources that W. L. Macatee and Sons was a huge company in Houston, and that the company was integral to the Houston community and economy. However, not much detailed information about how the Macatee family helped develop Houston was available. I decided that my research is what could fill that knowledge gap.

My research process was multi-pronged and at some times intense. It began with a small section of Houston on the 10th block in the 9th section of the 1907 Sanborn Map of Houston. W. L. Macatee and Sons was located on this block and that was the springboard to finding out more about the Macatee family. While looking through city directories I discovered that in each city directory W. L. Macatee and Son’s had large ads; this hinted toward their success. In looking through HeritageQuest to find Macatee’s in the census data I gathered a lot of information, but some things also led me astray. For example, I found a Macatee that is not related to the family and the misspelling of the family members names. By comparing places of birth and ages it became evident that some of the data was not relevant to the research. Through this research on the family and their business I decided on my question and begun searching the Briscoe to find more things about the Macatee’s. I found a few items connecting them with the development of Houston but there was still a gap.


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    […] The Priliminary Research Process […]

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