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Sydney Hillman Medical Center, Men's Apparel Industry Health Center

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1948–1950, Louis Magaziner. 2116–32 Chestnut St.

Among the best of Philadelphia's post–World War II modern buildings is this mini-hospital for the Men's Garment Workers’ Union. In a Morris Lapidus–like scheme, the principal block was placed on the diagonal across the block, lengthening the main facade while also creating triangular courts in recesses formed by short projecting wings. The combination of yellow limestone and polished brown, highly veined marble with stainless trim creates a rewarding building that suggests an important liaison between modern architecture, medicine, and the labor unions. Magaziner was important within this circle, designing the Amalgamated Labor headquarters at 2113–2127 South Street (demolished) and a host of labor-related buildings from Atlanta to Boston. The WPA-era mural from the Amalgamated building by Joseph Hirsch (1940), depicting workers breaking their chains of bondage with education, unity, and responsible capitalism, has been removed to the lobby of the Sidney Hillman Apartments (20 S. 22nd Street), constructed in 1969.

Writing Credits

Author: 
George E. Thomas
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Citation

George E. Thomas, "Sydney Hillman Medical Center, Men's Apparel Industry Health Center", [Philadelphia, Pennsylvania], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—, http://sah-archipedia.org/buildings/PA-02-PH104.

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of PA vol 2

Buildings of Pennsylvania: Philadelphia and Eastern Pennsylvania, George E. Thomas, with Patricia Likos Ricci, Richard J. Webster, Lawrence M. Newman, Robert Janosov, and Bruce Thomas. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2012, 106-106.

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