Montgomery Schuyler, AIA, (August 19, 1843, Ithaca, NY – July 7, 1914, New Rochelle, NY) was a highly influential critic, journalist and editorial writer in New York City who wrote about and influenced art, literature, music and architecture during the city's "Gilded Age." He was active as a journalist for over forty years but is principally noted as a highly influential architecture critic, and advocate of modern designs and defender of the skyscraper.
Schuyler was born in Ithaca, New York, the son of Eleanor Johnson and the Rev. Anthony Schuyler, one time rector of the Protestant Episcopal Church of the Epiphany in Orange, New Jersey. The Schuylers were one of the oldest families in New York, descendants of Philip Pieterse Schuyler, who settled in Beverwyck (now Albany, New York) in 1650.
He married Katherine Beekman Livingston in 1876. Their families were previously connected as Schuyler's great x7 aunt had married Katherine's ancestor, Robert Livingston, first Lord of the manor of Livingston (also ancestor of both Presidents Bush and Eleanor Roosevelt) in Albany in 1679.
Schuyler arrived in New York in 1865, at the end of the American Civil War, and worked as an editorial writer on The World, leaving to join the editorial staff of the New York Times in 1883. He was an editorial writer for the New York Times for twenty-four years. In addition, "he was managing editor of Harper's Weekly from 1885–1887, and was connected with the publishing department of Harper & Bros. from 1887 to 1894, serving both in an editorial capacity and as a writer. In the last few years Mr. Schuyler had been a contributor to The Sun, and also wrote for many magazines and periodicals, particularly on the subject of architecture, in which he specialized. The modern skyscraper had a staunch advocate in Mr. Schuyler, who believed that it was a legitimate architectural expression of our times."
He retired from the New York Times in 1907 and moved to New Rochelle, New York, "taking an active interest in local affairs, acting in an advisory capacity on questions of beautifying the city and the artistic and harmonious architectural development of the town."
- "It so happens that the work which is likely to be our most durable monument, and to convey some knowledge of us to the most remote posterity, is a work of bare utility; not a shrine, not a fortress, not a palace, but a bridge." Writing upon the opening of the Brooklyn Bridge, New York.
- His quotes on American bridges
- "Westward the Course of Empire"
- "Studies in American Architecture"
- "The Brooklyn Bridge" (with W. C. Conant)
- Articles for Harper's Magazine
- "Glimpses of western architecture. III.—St. Paul and Minneapolis" (October 1891)
- "Glimpses of western architecture. Chicago.—II" (September 1891)\
- "Glimpses of western architecture. Chicago.—I" (August 1891)
- "The Metropolitan Opera-house" (Nov 1883)
- "Recent Building in New York" (Sep 1883)
- |"OLD MEMBER OF TIMES STAFF DEAD; Montgomery Schuyler, Editorial Writer for 24 Years, Succumbs of Pneumonia." New York Times. July 17, 1914.
- | Excerpted from Montgomery Schuyler. "The Bridge as a Monument," Harper's Weekly (26 May 1883), 27, 326. Quoted in David P. Billington, The Tower and the Bridge: The New Art of Structural Engineering (1983), p.17
- Montgomery Schuyler at the archINFORM database
- Links to his books on Amazon.com
- |Review by James Early of Vassar College in the Society of Architectural Historians (1962) for the book William H. Jordy and Ralph Coe, eds.Montgomery Schuyler: American Architecture and Other Writings. (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1962)