Monday, November 06, 2006

Another Sullivan lost

Chicago seems to have a way with fire. First, "Mrs. O'Leary's cow" and now 3 separate fires have consumed the works of Louis Sullivan this year alone. Sullivan was half of the Adler & Sullivan architectural team that build so many now historic buildings all over Chicago. The structures that have been lost include most recently, a home at 600 W. Stratford in Lakeview, the Wirt Dexter building in the South Loop, and the Pilgrim Baptist Church in Bronzeville. In many ways it's a tragedy to see these glorious structures reduced to a pile of bricks and mortar. While 20 of Sullivan's creations remain, they are even more important part of Chicago's history.

I have often wondered if the competition between the architectural firms of Adler & Sullivan and Burnham & Root, the other prominent architectural firm at the time, is the reason that Chicago has so many wonderful buildings today.

Ok, so you didn't know who Sullivan was until last week or the book "Devil the in the White City?" There's still time to brush up on your architectural history.

Chicago Architecture Foundation - the boat and walking tours are some of my personal favorites...might be a little cold for those right now
Preservation Chicago
Devil in the White City

Related articles:
3rd Sullivan building burns
Architect's Legacy going up in smoke
Fire guts historic building

Photo from Preservation Chicago