Very cold and eventually rainy day in early July in Chicago, so weird!  But I always enjoy going on an architecture tour.

First Fireproof metal framed building was torn down in 1931, (so that’s why I’ve never seen it, pictured below) … one of the early skyscrapers from 1884.  New York had a rule (due to fire code) that buildings had to be load bearing, but Chicago had a rule/law stating that buildings had to be fireproof, so therefore Chicago was able to get a jump on building Skyscrapers with steel frames.


William Le Baron Jenney (September 25, 1832—June 14, 1907) was an American architect and engineer who is known for building the first skyscraper in 1884 and became known as the Father of the American skyscraper.


Another firm, that did a LOT of work in chicago Graham, Anderson, Probst & White (GAP&W) is a Chicago architectural firm that was founded in 1912 as Graham, Burnham & Co.This firm was the successor to D. H. Burnham & Co. through Daniel Burnham‘s surviving partner, Ernest R. Graham, and Burnham’s sons,Hubert Burnham and Daniel Burnham Jr. In 1917, the Burnhams left to form Burnham Brothers, and Graham and the others—(William) Peirce Anderson, Edward Mathias Probst, and Howard Judson White—formed the resulting practice. The firm also employed Victor Andre Matteson.


Green and gold building in the background was designed by Burnham and Assoc., the architects making it gold at the top, similar to a champagne bottle.

The firm was headquartered in Burnham’s own Railway Exchange Building. In part from its connection to Burnham, the firm captured the majority of the big commissions from 1912 to 1936, including such iconic works as the Wrigley BuildingMerchandise MartField MuseumShedd AquariumCivic Opera House, and the former central Chicago post office. Its only close rival was the equally prolific Holabird and Root.


Daniel Burnham is also a famous planner/architect from the early days of chicago:

Daniel Hudson BurnhamFAIA (September 4, 1846 – June 1, 1912) was an American architect and urban designer. He was the Director of Works for the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago. He took a leading role in the creation of master plans for the development of a number of cities, including Chicago and downtown Washington, D.C. He also designed several famous buildings, including the Flatiron Building of triangular shape in New York City, Union Station in Washington D.C., and the Continental Trust Company Building tower skyscraper in Baltimore (now One South Calvert Building).



La Salle Building, stepping back in profile, creating massing with daylight on both sides, skyscapers before air conditioning. Also this layout helps with daylighting, allowing light to enter a space from 2-3 sides.



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