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Old Bakery & Emporium, Austin

#11 of 18 in Historic Sites in Austin
Historic Site · Hidden Gem · Tourist Spot
The Old Bakery an art and craft emporium that features diverse and unique handcrafts by local artisans 50 or older and serves as a visitor information center. In addition, the Bakery houses the Lundberg-Maerki Historical Collection depicting Austin’s transformation from a rustic frontier town to a modern, bustling and influential state capitol. The Art Gallery, on the scenic 3rd floor, spotlights rotating fine art works.

The Old Bakery, a registered national landmark, has graced Congress Avenue since 1876, when it was built by Swedish immigrant Charles Lundberg. The building was used as a bakery till 1936, and after that for a variety of purposes.

The Old Bakery was vacant, deteriorating and scheduled for demolition when it was rescued through the combined efforts of the Austin Heritage Society, which purchased the structure in 1963, and the Junior League, which donated $12,500 for restoration work. No alterations were made in the restoration work which included installing the rods on the second floor to strengthen the side walls. The giant oven and the wooden baker's spade remain as reminders of the building's history.

In 1964, the Heritage Society began operating a Tourist Information Center and Coffee Kitchen at the site. When the mortgage was paid off in 1970, the Old Bakery was sold to the State of Texas. The state of Texas deeded the building and property to the City of Austin in 1980. The City of Austin Office of Bicentennial Affairs and the Texas Bicentennial Information Center occupied the building between July 1974 and September 1976. The Old Bakery and Emporium opened its doors in October, 1976, as a co-sponsored project of the Senior Programs Section of the Austin Parks and Recreation Department and the First Lady's Volunteer Program of the Texas Center for Volunteer Action.
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Old Bakery & Emporium reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
24 reviews
  • I was thrilled to find a beautiful glass earrings and necklace. Very reasonably priced and would have been 2-3x in downtown boutiques. All the employees volunteer their time to show their work. They....  more »
  • Take some time to check out the art, history and crafts this place has to offer. It's not a bakery, but it was still a cool place to visit.  more »
  • Very informative place with great history about Austin. Wonderful exhibit of photos at the time and a nice assortment of items to purchase. Will with the time to stop and visit.
  • You can find an eclectic collection of souvineers & art decor pieces!

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