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St. Albans City Hall

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1897, Arthur H. Smith. 100 N. Main St., City of St. Albans

The Romanesque Revival popularized by H. H. Richardson was still evident some eleven years after his death in a burst of civic architecture in St. Albans. While rebuilding after the fire of 1895, the community also needed new public construction, especially since it received a city charter in 1896. Over the next five years, St. Albans built a city hall, a county jail, twin elementary schools (FR28), and a library, all in a similar style. Rutland architect Smith designed the most monumental of these—the city hall. The brick building sits upon a granite basement that rises in a rock-faced Syrian arch set in a deep, buttressed porch framing the shadowy entrance. A polygonal two-story bay and a three-story tower with louvered belfry and corbeled polygonal cap picturesquely frame the inset central zone. The building extends at the rear with a lower assembly hall intended as a public meeting place and home to the local company of the Vermont National Guard prior to the construction of an armory in 1915. Subsequently flanked by three-story commercial blocks, the municipal building asserts its special status with a setback from the building line, its powerful entrance, and the animation of its massing.

Writing Credits

Author: 
Glenn M. Andres and Curtis B. Johnson
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Citation

Glenn M. Andres and Curtis B. Johnson, "St. Albans City Hall", [St. Albans, Vermont], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—, http://sah-archipedia.org/buildings/VT-01-FR38.

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Vermont

Buildings of Vermont, Glenn M. Andres and Curtis B. Johnson. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2013, 213-214.

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