Salvation Army, Bedford-Stuyvesant, NYC

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I came across this Salvation Army building in Brooklyn’s Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood recently. According to the cornerstone, it dates from 1965, but I don’t know much else. It is a multipurpose space with a utilitarian design. There is little exterior design besides the Salvation Army crest above the entrance and the simplified pediments above the narrow windows to the left of the entrance.

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Congregation Ezrath Israel, Ellenville, NY

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This synagogue is located in the small Catskills town of Ellenville. While sleepy today, the town has significant connections to larger Jewish culture, being close to where many of the Borscht Belt resorts were located and also being in the town where the Chabad-Lubavitch summer camp network (now the largest summer camp network worldwide) originated.

IMG_7875Congregation Ezrath Israel’s current building looks to date from the late 1960s or early 1970s, although it could be even later. The textured concrete block facade was usually employed in later 1970s buildings, what some refer to as Brutalist. Here the severity of the facade is enlivened a bit by the narrow colored-glass windows and the prominent projecting entrance canopy.

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Posted in New York State | 4 Comments

Bank of Greene County, Catskill, NY

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This bank is located on Main Street in the upstate town of Catskill surrounded by an intact, older downtown. I could not find a date of construction but it looks to me to date to the late 1950s or early 1960s. It has some nice details including the aluminum trim at the roofline, on the flat entrance canopy, and around the windows; as well as thin brick courses; and what could be marble in the panels above the windows. IMG_7863IMG_7859

Posted in New York State | 2 Comments

St. Francis Xavier High School, Ladies Mile, NYC

IMG_7902This 7-story Catholic school addition is part of the St. Francis Xavier complex on West 16th Street. It was built from 1960-65 and designed by architect Joseph H. Belfatto, who designed several Catholic churches around the city.

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The building sits between the massive and recently restored St. Francis Xavier Church by Patrick Keely and the 1920s portion of the high school. The mid-century wing replaced an earlier Victorian building.

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Chadwin House, Chelsea, NYC

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Chadwin House is a low-rise apartment building, now condominiums. It was built in 1963 to designs by prolific architect Horace Ginsbern, most well-known for his deco-style apartment buildings on the Grand Concourse in the Bronx. He was still designing until his death in 1969 and his son carried on the firm until at least the 1980s.

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The bands of white brick on Chadwin House contribute to its horizontality and also enliven a fairly utilitarian facade. Columbia University has a sales brochure of Chadwin House that makes it seem like the building was trying to fit in well with its older Chelsea neighbors. The brochure also shows a simpler, curved mid-century entrance canopy and a decorative metal screen on the windows to the left of the entrance.

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With much new construction going on in Chelsea, this block of Seventh Avenue is a low-rise anomaly given the Chadwin House’s placement directly across Seventh Avenue from a one-story power station.

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Lovingston Post Office, Lovingston, VA

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At 131 Main Street is this small mid-century post office. Built in 1960, the building incorporates a wall of marble to the right of the entrance as well as beige brick, enamel panels around the windows and aluminum trim on the entrance and at the roofline. There are several mid-century buildings in this small town of otherwise older structures.

As always, if you have local mid-century buildings that you love, send us photos and information! We always like featuring reader submissions for Mundane Mondays.

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Agudath Sholom Synagogue, Lynchburg, VA

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Agudath Sholom Synagogue is set back off Langhorne Road, a long and low building surrounded by trees. This building was built in 1955-56 for a growing congregation that was moving out of the downtown as many businesses and organizations were doing at the time.

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The architects for the new building were Alexander Sharove of Pittsburgh, who died before the synagogue was completed, and Pendleton Clark of Lynchburg. Sharove was based in Pittsburgh, although born in Richmond, VA. He worked on at least six synagogue, temple or yeshiva sites until his death in 1955. Agudath Sholom is the last project noted in his 1956 American Institute of Architects listing. Clark was a prominent architect in Lynchburg starting in the 1920s and designed residential, religious and collegiate buildings across Virginia.

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The main facade materials are red brick with limestone trim. Up close to the building, one can better see the detailing, including several Jewish symbols–the menorah, the tablets, and a row of Stars of David framed in the windows set back above the entrance.

Posted in Lynchburg, Virginia | 1 Comment