Sid Richardson and Perry Bass at San Jose Island Ranch by Photographer unknown

Name: Sid Richardson and Perry Bass at San Jose Island Ranch | Artist: Photographer unknown Media: None | Year(s): ca. 1955
Photographer unknown | Sid Richardson and Perry Bass at San Jose Island Ranch | ca. 1955

About the Work

93,000 8-inch by 8-inch by 16-inch hollow building blocks made of shellcrete (a mixture of cement, oyster shell, and beach sand from the island) were crafted by Perry’s crew to build Sid’s island home. Other native materials, such as mahogany logs washed up from the shore, were used for some of the floors and the ranch house furniture. The building of the home occured at the beginning of a lifelong business partnership between uncle and nephew, and this photograph captures Sid (seated in the jeep) and Perry (standing) on the island, more than a decade after the home was completed. A 1953 article entitled “Island Ranch” in the Corpus Christi Caller explains that jeeps as well as horses were a necessary means of transportation on the island, and that cowboys on Sid’s ranch “have to know how to swim as well as ride; pilot a tugboat as well as rein a cow pony; round up cattle in the water as well as on the range . . . .[and] are as much at home on the hurricane deck of a boat as on a bronc.” Sid’s ranch hands had to develop “sea legs as well as saddle legs.”