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Loussac and Loussac-Sogn Buildings

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1941 and 1946–1947, William A. Manley. 411 and 425 D St.

Two three-story buildings in the Moderne style were built side by side in the 1940s for Z. J. Loussac. Loussac opened a drugstore in Anchorage in 1916 and became wealthy through that and other investments. After the Second World War, he turned to philanthropy and politics, serving two terms as mayor beginning in 1947. He arranged that his philanthropic foundation receive his share of the income from the Loussac-Sogn Building.

The Loussac Building, an apartment and office building measuring 70 feet by 40 feet, was constructed in 1941. The reinforced-concrete structure has a strong horizontal emphasis, with single and double windows in a band, connected by fluted panels. The rough-finished walls are unornamented, and the flat roof has no cornice. The original storefronts survive; they are asymmetrical, with panes of glass meeting at the corners without mullions.

The Loussac-Sogn Building was constructed after the war, in 1946–1947. Like the Loussac Building, the 100-foot-by-140-foot Loussac-Sogn Building, built around an interior courtyard, has a strong horizontal emphasis, with double windows in a band separated by fluted panels. The two-story entrance adds a vertical counterthrust. The walls are smooth finished, and the flat roof has no cornice.

William A. Manley designed the Loussac-Sogn Building; judging by similarities to the Loussac Building, he may have designed that too. Manley, who came to Anchorage in 1937, had a flourishing architectural practice until 1976 (in partnership with Francis B. Mayer, 1948–1972). Manley also designed the Central Building at Third and G in 1946 in the same style as these. He was an accomplished designer in the Moderne style, a style that characterizes downtown Anchorage. The Moderne style, simple and austere, was well suited for Alaska, where architectural ornamentation was seen as an unnecessary frill.

Writing Credits

Author: 
Alison K. Hoagland
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Citation

Alison K. Hoagland, "Loussac and Loussac-Sogn Buildings", [Anchorage, Alaska], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—, http://sah-archipedia.org/buildings/AK-01-SC011.

Print Source

Buildings of Alaska, Alison K. Hoagland. New York: Oxford University Press, 1993, 88-89.

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