Kirtland Cutter: Architect in the Land of Promise

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9780295976099: Kirtland Cutter: Architect in the Land of Promise

In the early years of the twentieth century, Spokane was singled out for praise in the West for the quality of its architecture and the impressive way it had rebuilt after the devastating fire of 1889. Major credit for the city's distinctive character was extended to Kirtland Kelsey Cutter for his "rare architectural force and genius for design." His remarkable career, stretching from the Gilded Age to the Great Depression, allows a fascinating study of the evolution of an eclectic form of architecture that was an inevitable response to rich regional and historical influences during a time of transition from frontier settlements to modern city. Henry Matthews presents a comprehensive study of the whole body of Cutter's work, with ample photographs and illustrations. The book is based on exhaustive research in both the Northwest and California, revealing the influences on Cutter and his associates, the processes at work in the design and construction of the buildings, and the relations between the architect and the many people who commissioned his work. Particularly useful to Matthews's research was a collection of 290 sets of drawings, as well as office accounts, letters, and books from Cutter's library - materials acquired by the Eastern Washington State Historical Society. He also was able to interview former assistants and clients, who provided valuable insights on the architect and the way Cutter worked. In addition, many of the architect's residences, hotels, clubs, and commercial buildings are still standing.

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Matthews, Henry
Published by University of Washington Press (1998)
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