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Buffalo in Erie County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Frank Lloyd Wright’s Larkin Administration Building

 
 
Frank Lloyd Wright’s Larkin Administration Building Marker image. Click for full size.
By Anton Schwarzmueller, April 7, 2019
1. Frank Lloyd Wright’s Larkin Administration Building Marker
Inscription.  
Frank Lloyd Wright’s Larkin Administration Building

Frank Lloyd Wright was the Architect for this revolutionary building constructed in 1903. His skillful design incorporated modern technology developed early in the 20th century. Wright used machine made objects to define the function of the structure and the beauty of its materials. This made the Larkin Building one of the first icons of modern architecture, and thus played an important role in the development of the modern world by defining an image for architecture in the machine age. Innovative construction methods allowed Wright to synthesize modern technology into a coherent interpretation of the Industrial Revolution.

The structure was demolished in 1950 with the exception of the brick fence pier (adjacent to this panel) and major portions of the basement. The pier incorporates the major materials of the building’s exterior.

The demolition of the Larkin Administration Building is viewed by architectural historians as the most significant loss of an architectural icon in the history of North America.

Above Left: Lobby/front desk of administration
Frank Lloyd Wright’s Larkin Administration Building Marker image. Click for full size.
By Anton Schwarzmueller, April 7, 2019
2. Frank Lloyd Wright’s Larkin Administration Building Marker
View is eastward on Swan Street.
building • Wright incorporated composite material called magnesite into the custom designed office furniture and floors.

Above Right: Central lightcourt with metal office furniture of Frank Lloyd Wright’s design. • Wright designed the building with a naturally lighted central space as a haven from the harsh industrial neighborhood. Air conditioning was provided to maintain a clean work environment. Reinforced concrete made the building largely fireproof. This photograph was taken in 1915 from the desk of company secretary Darwin D. Martin. Martin had beed responsible for Wright receiving the commission to design the Larkin Building. Martin also commissioned Wright to design an elaborate home environment in North Buffalo (Darwin Martin House Complex), as well as a large summer home (Graycliff Estate) located southwest of Buffalo on the high stone cliffs of Lake Erie, in Derby, New York.

Original double with souvenir postcard of the Larkin Company, circa 1915. • Larkin was started as a soap manufacturing company in 1875 by John D. Larkin Sr. and Elbert Hubbard. Hubbard left the business in the 1890’s and founded the Roycroft Arts Community in East Aurora, New York. At the company’s peak in the 1920’s, it was one of the world’s largest mail order retailers. However, the company was unable to adapt to a retail store economy and went out of business in 1961. Buffalo
Frank Lloyd Wright’s Larkin Administration Building Marker & Fence Pier Remnant image. Click for full size.
By Anton Schwarzmueller, April 7, 2019
3. Frank Lloyd Wright’s Larkin Administration Building Marker & Fence Pier Remnant
View is westward.
China Inc. was the only surviving subsidiary by 2003. Frank Lloyd Wright’s highly articulated Administration Building is shown in contrast to the simple rectangular massing of the factory beyond.

Frank Lloyd Wright, Architect of the building, seen in this photograph contemplating images of the demolished Larkin Administration Building at a 1935 exposition in New York City. Photograph copyright by Pedro E. Guerrero.
 
Location. 42° 52.634′ N, 78° 51.11′ W. Marker is in Buffalo, New York, in Erie County. Marker is at the intersection of Swan Street and Seymour Street, on the left when traveling west on Swan Street. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 664 Swan Street, Buffalo NY 14210, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. A different marker also named Frank Lloyd Wright’s Larkin Administration Building (within shouting distance of this marker); a different marker also named Frank Lloyd Wright’s Larkin Administration Building (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); William Wells Brown (approx. 0.7 miles away); Henry Wolanski (approx. 0.8 miles away); First Polish Colony (approx. 0.9 miles away); St. Stanislaus Church (approx. 0.9 miles away); St. Ann's Church (approx. 0.9 miles away); The Nash House (approx. one mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Buffalo.
 
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 Larkin Administration Building - Wikipedia. (Submitted on April 8, 2019, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York.)
 
Categories. Architecture
 

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Credits. This page was last revised on April 8, 2019. This page originally submitted on April 8, 2019, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York. This page has been viewed 55 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on April 8, 2019, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York.
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