SAL banner

104  S. Austin Street, Seguin, Texas 78155


Our History


League History
Seguin Art League has a 35-year history of dedicated artists and community support that continues to grow today. We appreciate all the past and present donors, members, and volunteers for their hard work and continuous passion for the arts.

Established in 1982, Mary Franke began bringing together artists as an art club. By 1984, they became the Oakwood Art Group eventually joining the One Seguin Art Center with Mary Mizell serving as the first president. The Center’s name was later changed in 1997 to Seguin Oakwood Art League when it registered as a 501(c)3 nonprofit. The members gathered in homes, the One Seguin building, the Heritage Museum, the Silver Center, and in various churches. The League operated a successful gallery at 109 River St. for two years allowing art to inspire all ages including students, artists and supporters from all over Guadalupe County. In 2013, the name was changed to Seguin Art League. In 2014, SAL purchased the Klein Opera House which was built in 1890, located at 104 S. Austin Street in downtown Seguin, Texas. SAL is currently raising funds to renovate the historic structure to house an art gallery and performing arts center.

Seguin Art League successfully hosts several events throughout the year. Our annual staple event is the well-attended Yulefest Arts and Crafts Show held in December. Each year, we support young artists through student art shows featuring the work of area artists from grades 1 through 12 who utilize all media to showcase their abilities with other schools in and around the Guadalupe County area.  

History of our Building

The Seguin Art League purchased the F. Klein Opera House, built in 1890, in December 2014 from Leonard Mandell of Houston, Texas.

In 1890, Charles Tips contracted with Col. Ferdinand Klein to build the Klein-Tips Building and Klein Opera House. Built of locally made Sonka Brick, it originally had a “New Orleans” style balcony with ornate wrought iron railings. The location housed a billiard parlor, a bakery and a saloon. The corner Tips building was a hardware store and the First National Bank until it moved across to the North East corner of Court and Austin. The Klein Opera House was (according to historian Willie Mae Weinert) the most pretentious of the then opera houses of Seguin with a “well-arranged” stage and a supper room behind the stage. It is noted that in November of 1899 the first movie in Seguin was shown in the Klein.  In 1914, the Sons of Hermann put in a bowling alley and it was used as a club, a dance hall, a place for plays, an American Legion hall and later a place for graduation ceremonies for St. James and the Guadalupe Baptist College. Harry Lee Mendlowitz (pronounced mendlovitz) purchased the building from Maria Klein (widow of Col. Klein) and expanded his mercantile business named Mendlowitz Fine Drygoods and later Mendlowitz Brothers. The opera house was converted to a storage room and was used as such until the mercantile was sold.  The family moved to Houston and their name was changed to Mandell in the 1950’s. The family continued to own the building and leased it to various retailers until Leonard Mandell and his siblings sold the building to the Seguin Art League in December of 2014.

Today, the Seguin Art League is raising funds to renovate 104 S. Austin Street (The Klein Opera House) to be the Seguin Art Gallery and Performing Arts Center. Support our building project.

History provided by Willie Mae Weinert.