Building 51 | Building 51 | early 1890’s interior ornamental cast iron union trust building commercial door louis h. sullivan-designed backplates or escutcheons – yale & towne mfg. co., stamford, ct.
8457
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early 1890’s interior ornamental cast iron union trust building commercial door louis h. sullivan-designed backplates or escutcheons – yale & towne mfg. co., stamford, ct.

51-20543-14

Category

Louis Sullivan

About This Item

matching pair of original historically important ornamental cast iron interior doorknob backplates or escutcheons salvaged from the extant union trust building, designed by architects louis h. sullivan and dankmar adler. the union trust building was constructed in 1892-3. this structure, built in a “u” shaped plan with two wings surrounding a central light court, was designed by louis sullivan’s firm immediately after their famous wainwright building. structurally, it is considered to be more pure than its better known contemporary (i.e., wainwright building). modifications of the first two floors in 1924 eliminated some of the buildings important architectural elements such as its arched entryways and circular windows. the upper floors of the building return to its original characteristics, with uninterrupted brick shafts from the third to the twelfth floors. above the rounded arch windows of the twelfth floor, a two story cap contains terra cotta lion heads projecting from its spandrels. rich sullivanesque ornamentation adorns the building’s cornice. the interior office door backplates were manufactured by the yale & towne mfg. co., stamford, ct. the design or pattern was later used as a “stock pattern, known as “senlis,” under the yale & towne hardware catalog modern renaissance school classification. although yale and towne executed other sullivan-designed hardware for various building commissions, this pattern and the “parma” pattern (used in the bayard building in new york) were the only two patterns to be offered to the public in yale & towne catalogs (e.g., page 714 & 715 of the 1910 hardware catalog). the office door escutcheons are in great overall condition.