Lewis Pilcher

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Lewis Pilcher
Vassar7.jpg
Jewett House, Vassar College
Born 1871
Died 1941
Nationality USA
Known for Architect

Lewis F. Pilcher, AIA (1871 – 1941), was an American academic and architect active in the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth-century New York City. With William G. Tachau, he was a partner of Pilcher and Tachau, the predecessor firm of Tachau and Vought.[1] He was a professor of art at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, New York. He subsequently was a state architect of New York.[2]

Through his connections at Vassar, Pilcher designed the eight-story North Residence (1907), renamed in 1915 as Jewett House. The structure is composed of a four-story U-shaped arms block, which frames a quad-side court, and is attached to a rear eight-story tower that incorporates a 30,000-gallon water tank. The structure extensively used steel and concrete structural components faced with red brick and terracotta ornamentation. The high level of decorative work, including crenellations, grotesque terracotta faces and animals was incongruous to Vassar’s restrained red brick-with-sandstone-trim Quad dormitories and was nicknamed “Pilcher’s Crime.” The structure failed to attract donors who would have attached their name and it was instead renamed in honor of the college’s first president, Milo P. Jewett.[2]

His partner, William G. Tachau, went on to a more successful career in the architectural firm of Tachau and Vought.[1]

Kingsbridge Armory, Bronx, NY

Works[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Nancy L. Todd.[1] New York's Historic Armories: An Illustrated History (Albany, New York: State University of New York Press, 2006), p.268
  2. ^ a b c Karen Van Lengen and Lisa Reilly.Vassar College: An Architectural Tour. The Campus Guide Series. (New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 2004), p.80