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CVS Pharmacy (Jacob Reed's Sons Store)

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Jacob Reed's Sons Store
1903–1904, Price and McLanahan. 1424 Chestnut St.
  • (© George E. Thomas)

Taking a cue from his teacher Frank Furness, William L. Price here anticipated pop distortion of scale, adapting a Palladian window as the entire lower storefront facade to the building, with a rich Arts and Crafts tapestry of brick and tile above. It won the approval of one of Price's friends, architect C. R. Ashbee, who contrasted it with the “traditional” work of McKim, Mead and White at the nearby former Girard Trust Company ( PH53). The Palladian arch of the entrance continues in the barrel-vaulted nave of the interior (now a drug store), where the custom-made men's suits for which Reed's store was known were displayed, while the shirts and other necessaries of this men's world were dispensed from cases along the lower side aisles. Electric lights behind the leaded glass windows of the lunettes of the vault give the illusion of a freestanding structure. The upper levels, carried on an early post-and-beam reinforced concrete frame, housed the manufacturing spaces, a use hinted at by the Mercer tile panels of spinning, weaving, and cutting in the intrados of the arch above the main entrance. Nearby at 1420 Chestnut Street is the brick and terra-cotta-clad Crozer Building (1896–1897) by Frank Miles Day and Brother, an elegant adaptation of a French fifteenth-century chateau for the offices of the Baptist Publication Society.

Writing Credits

George E. Thomas


What's Nearby


George E. Thomas, "CVS Pharmacy (Jacob Reed's Sons Store)", [Philadelphia, Pennsylvania], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

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, 94-95.

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