The FOX Theatre, which opened on Christmas Day, 1929, was constructed amongst a forest of formidable mansions in a neighborhood which was in the process of turning commercial, thanks to the invention of the automobile.  Below, the newly-completed FOX and its splendid next door neighbor, the residence of Mrs. Mary E. Oliver. The 1926 Biltmore Hotel can be seen in the distant background, the blasting as part of its construction having been said to propel estate owners out of midtown to points northward.

The photo below, taken from the same vantage, shows the cleared FOX lot in early 1928.  The Coon, Kimball , and Ragan mansions were demolished, along with the Ragan gardens, gazebo and two quarters for servants and horses.  The adjacent George M. Brown residence also did not survive to the completion of the Theatre.

The George M. Brown residence hugging the theatre's north wall during construction.

Photographs, the Atlanta City Directory, and the Hagstrom insurance map of 1912 combine to give one a fairly clear snapshot of  "before the Fox."

Here are several views of the houses that stood where the FOX now stands.  The Hannibal Kimball Residence, viewed from Peachtree Street.

A similar view of the Kimball residence, in a rare Atlanta snow.

The Willis Ragan residence, seen from Peachtree Street.

The same house, seen from Kimball Street.

From the same vantage, this photo shows both Kimball Mansion (left) the Ragan Mansion (right), and the gazebo in between, not to mention the windmill.

Directly across Kimball Street (now Ponce de Leon) from the FOX was the residence of Samuel Inman, as in Inman Park.

To the left of the Inman house stood the home of Frank E. Block, confectioner and tobacconist.  Block's great-granddaughter Jeanette Block Depoy resides in Atlanta.

By 1939, the Inman and Block houses stood on the very edge of the creeping crumby commercial  development.

This shot, which dates from 1948, shows the construction of the Franklin Simon department store on the site of the Inman house.

The house behind Franklin Simon was once the residence of my great-grandfather, R.L. Foreman.

This photo from 1907 is taken in what is now the alley behind the FOX  looking across the street to the Foreman residence at 23 Kimball.   To the left is my grandfather R.L. "Trot" Foreman and on the right is his older brother Howell.