COVID-19: Updates on library services and operations.

Skyscraper rivals : the AIG Building and the architecture of Wall Street /
Daniel M. Abramson.
1st ed.
New York : Princeton Architectural Press, c2001.
xv, 207 p. : ill. (some col.), maps ; 31 cm.
1568982445 (alk. paper)
More Details
New York : Princeton Architectural Press, c2001.
1568982445 (alk. paper)
catalogue key
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
Daniel M. Abramson is an assistant professor of art history at Tufts University
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2001-09-01:
Skyscraper Rivals is an important book and will be a model for future scholarship on American skyscrapers built between the two world wars. Abramson (art history, Tufts Univ.) examines the design and construction of four tall office buildings erected in lower Manhattan's financial district between 1928 and 1932. The exemplary approach adopted by the author extends the scope of traditional treatments of skyscraper architecture. He includes discussions of financial, geographical, and technological aspects of the buildings, and his cast of characters includes the clients and building managers responsible for planning and operating skyscrapers as well as the architects. In addition, the descriptions of the rituals and routines that marked the lives of the building tenants will be of great interest to social historians. The text is accompanied by detailed notes and an excellent bibliography. The illustrations are a combination of valuable archival images and contemporary views of the buildings by the noted architectural photographer Norman McGrath. This book will appeal to a wide range of readers including business, economic, and social historians as well as architectural and urban historians. Upper-division undergraduates through professionals. D. P. Doordan University of Notre Dame
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, September 2001
Washington Post, December 2001
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Main Description
Millions of visitors flock to New York each year to witness the excitement of Wall Street, famous for its shoulder-to-shoulder Deco towers jostling for prominence above the canyon like streets. Skyscraper Rivals is the first book to examine the architecture of Wall Street between the wars through an amazing array of contemporary and archival images and an informed discussion of the financial, geographical, and historical forces that shaped this district. The book focuses on the AIG Building--once known as the Cities Service Building--and three other major towers in the financial district, in their race to be the tallest, the most modern, and the most lavish. We meet the tycoons who paid for these structures, the architects who designed them, the workers who labored in them, and the artists and photographers who portrayed them. The economics of skyscraper construction and the real-estate market of Wall Street are explained; also included are illuminating details and anecdotes surrounding each building's history. An essay by Carol Willis, director of New York's Skyscraper Museum and author of Form Follows Finance, provides an introduction.
Main Description
The soaring, ultra-masculine architecture of Wall Street is presented in an amazing array of contemporary and archival images accompanied by an informed discussion of the financial, geographical and historical forces that carved out this storied street.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgmentsp. vii
List of Illustrationsp. ix
Prefacep. x
Introductionp. 1
Wall Street's Architecture Before 1920p. 1
The Clientsp. 16
Wall Street in the 1920s
Cities Service
Henry L. Doherty
Irving Trust
City Bank Farmers Trust
40 Wall Street
Finance and the Real Estate Market
The Architectsp. 32
Clinton and Russell, Holton and George
Voorhees, Gmelin and Walker
Cross and Cross
Severance, Matsui, Smith, and Walker and Gillette
Other Financial District Architects
Skyscraper Challenges
Professional Practice
Tradition, Modernity, and Texture
Planningp. 52
Cities Service Building
One Wall Street
40 Wall Street
City Bank Farmers Trust Building
Interior Planning
The Office Unit
Constructionp. 72
Demolition, Excavation, Foundation
Steel Frame
Facade and Finish
Management and Labor
Technologyp. 82
Vertical Transportation
Environmental Systems
Enclosure and Concealment
Exterior Expressionp. 94
I Iteral Tradition
Tradition Abridged
40 Wall Strfft: Hybrid Heights
City Bank Farmers Trust: "Conservative Modern"
Art Deco
One Wall Street: Rhythm and Remedy
Cities Service Building: Vertical Aspiration
Modernist Restraint and Volume
Interior Distinctionp. 120
General and Partitioned Offices
Corporate Suites
Exective offices
Board of Directors Rooms
Executive Amenities
Public Halls
Irving Trust's Reception Room
Observation Galleries
Skyscraper Livesp. 152
"City in a Tower"
"Half a Million Penmen" (and women)
Changing New York
Skyscraper Debate
Symbolizing New York
"You are America!"
Beautiful Irony
Postscriptp. 182
Notesp. 189
Bibliographyp. 196
Indexp. 201
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

This information is provided by a service that aggregates data from review sources and other sources that are often consulted by libraries, and readers. The University does not edit this information and merely includes it as a convenience for users. It does not warrant that reviews are accurate. As with any review users should approach reviews critically and where deemed necessary should consult multiple review sources. Any concerns or questions about particular reviews should be directed to the reviewer and/or publisher.

  link to old catalogue

Report a problem