Thomas Rogers Kimball

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Thomas Rogers Kimball
Thomas Rogers Kimball, 1854-1904 Nebrasans.png
Thomas Rogers Kimball
BornApril 19, 1862
Linwood, Ohio (now a neighborhood within Cincinnati)
DiedSeptember 7, 1934 (aged 72)
CitizenshipUnited States
Alma mater University of Nebraska (now U of N–Lincoln)
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
École des Beaux-Arts
Occupation Architect
Spouse(s)Annie McPhail Kimball

Thomas Rogers Kimball (April 19, 1862 September 7, 1934) was an American architect in Omaha, Nebraska. An architect-in-chief of the Trans-Mississippi Exposition in Omaha in 1898, he served as national President of the American Institute of Architects from 1918–1920 and from 1919-1932 served on the Nebraska State Capitol Commission. [1]

Architect person trained to plan and design buildings, and oversee their construction

An architect is a person who plans, designs and reviews the construction of buildings. To practice architecture means to provide services in connection with the design of buildings and the space within the site surrounding the buildings that have human occupancy or use as their principal purpose. Etymologically, architect derives from the Latin architectus, which derives from the Greek, i.e., chief builder.

Omaha, Nebraska City in Nebraska, United States

Omaha is the largest city in the state of Nebraska and the county seat of Douglas County. Omaha is in the Midwestern United States on the Missouri River, about 10 miles (15 km) north of the mouth of the Platte River. The nation's 40th-largest city, Omaha's 2018 estimated population was 466,061.

Trans-Mississippi Exposition

The Trans-Mississippi and International Exposition was a world's fair held in Omaha, Nebraska from June 1 to November 1 of 1898. Its goal was to showcase the development of the entire West, stretching from the Mississippi River to the Pacific Coast. The Indian Congress was held concurrently. Over 2.6 million people came to Omaha to view the 4,062 exhibits during the five months of the Exposition. President William McKinley and William Jennings Bryan were among the dignitaries who attended at the invitation of Gurdon Wattles, the event's leader. 100,000 people assembled on the plaza to hear them speak. The Expo stretched over a 180-acre (0.73 km2) tract in North Omaha and featured a 2,000 feet (610 m)-long lagoon encircled by 21 classical buildings that featured fine and modern products from around the world.

Contents

Kimball was credited with pursuing 871 commissions, which included designing 167 new residential buildings and 162 new non-residential structures, served as architectural adviser to commissions responsible for erection of Missouri and Nebraska state capitols, the Kansas City Liberty Memorial, and the Indiana state war memorial in Indianapolis, and was member of national council of fine arts established by U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt to evaluate all plans for public buildings, monuments, and statutes. [2] [3] [4]

Theodore Roosevelt 26th president of the United States

Theodore Roosevelt Jr. was an American statesman, politician, conservationist, naturalist, and writer who served as the 26th president of the United States from 1901 to 1909. He previously served as the 25th vice president of the United States from March to September 1901 and as the 33rd governor of New York from 1899 to 1900. As a leader of the Republican Party during this time, he became a driving force for the Progressive Era in the United States in the early 20th century. His face is depicted on Mount Rushmore, alongside those of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Abraham Lincoln. In polls of historians and political scientists, Roosevelt is generally ranked as one of the five best presidents.

Biography

The Hotel Fontenelle in Omaha, Nebraska, designed by Thomas Kimball Hotelfontenelle.jpg
The Hotel Fontenelle in Omaha, Nebraska, designed by Thomas Kimball

Born April 19, 1862 in Linwood, Cincinnati, Ohio, he moved to Omaha, Nebraska with his parents when he was in his early teens. After graduating from high school in 1878, he attended the University of Nebraska (currently the University of Nebraska-Lincoln) for two years, but did not graduate. He next went to Boston, where he worked with a private tutor for another two years. Kimball then entered the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he studied architecture until 1887. He did not graduate, but was later given an affiliation with the School of Architecture.

Linwood, Cincinnati human settlement in Cincinnati, Ohio, United States of America

Linwood is a neighborhood in Cincinnati, Ohio. The population was 875 at the 2010 census.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology University in Massachusetts

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is a private research university in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The Institute is a land-grant, sea-grant, and space-grant university, with an urban campus that extends more than a mile alongside the Charles River. The Institute also encompasses a number of major off-campus facilities such as the MIT Lincoln Laboratory, the Bates Center, and the Haystack Observatory, as well as affiliated laboratories such as the Broad and Whitehead Institutes. Founded in 1861 in response to the increasing industrialization of the United States, MIT adopted a European polytechnic university model and stressed laboratory instruction in applied science and engineering. It has since played a key role in the development of many aspects of modern science, engineering, mathematics, and technology, and is widely known for its innovation and academic strength, making it one of the most prestigious institutions of higher learning in the world.

Kimball then moved to Paris, where he spent a year studying art at L'Ecole des Beaux Arts. Returning to Boston in 1888, he began working for a publishing company. The following year, Kimball married Annie McPhail in Boston. [5]

Paris Capital city of France

Paris is the capital and most populous city of France, with an area of 105 square kilometres and an official estimated population of 2,140,526 residents as of 1 January 2019. Since the 17th century, Paris has been one of Europe's major centres of finance, diplomacy, commerce, fashion, science, as well as the arts. The City of Paris is the centre and seat of government of the Île-de-France, or Paris Region, which has an estimated official 2019 population of 12,213,364, or about 18 percent of the population of France. The Paris Region had a GDP of €709 billion in 2017. According to the Economist Intelligence Unit Worldwide Cost of Living Survey in 2018, Paris was the second most expensive city in the world, after Singapore, and ahead of Zurich, Hong Kong, Oslo and Geneva. Another source ranked Paris as most expensive, on a par with Singapore and Hong Kong, in 2018. The city is a major railway, highway, and air-transport hub served by two international airports: Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Paris-Orly. Opened in 1900, the city's subway system, the Paris Métro, serves 5.23 million passengers daily, and is the second busiest metro system in Europe after Moscow Metro. Gare du Nord is the 24th busiest railway station in the world, but the first located outside Japan, with 262 million passengers in 2015.

École des Beaux-Arts influential art schools in France

An École des Beaux-Arts is one of a number of influential art schools in France. The most famous is the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts, now located on the left bank in Paris, across the Seine from the Louvre, at 14 rue Bonaparte. The school has a history spanning more than 350 years, training many of the great artists in Europe. Beaux Arts style was modeled on classical "antiquities", preserving these idealized forms and passing the style on to future generations.

Walker and Kimball

In 1891, Kimball formed an architectural firm with MIT instructor C. Howard Walker and architect Herbert Best. Best soon retired. Walker remained in Boston to run the office there; Kimball moved back to Omaha and opened an office. Both operated under the name Walker and Kimball. In 1892, Kimball was commissioned to design a public library building in Omaha. Although Kimball had been able to get the job through connections established by his father, railroad executive Thomas Lord Kimball, the younger Kimball was in fact well qualified for the work. He was also something of a curiosity in 1890s Omaha, since he had been educated in the East and had studied architecture both in the United States and in France. Kimball began attracting many high-profile projects in Omaha, including St. Frances Cabrini Church and the Burlington Train Station. In 1893, some of his architectural plans were shown in Chicago at the World Columbian Exposition. [6]

Charles Howard Walker (1857–1936) was an architect, designer and educator in Boston, Massachusetts, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. He taught at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and was affiliated with Boston's Society of Arts and Crafts. With Thomas Rogers Kimball, he worked as architect-in-chief of the Trans-Mississippi Exposition, 1898.

Architectural plan design and planning for a building

In the field of architecture an architectural plan is a design and planning for a building, and can contain architectural drawings, specifications of the design, calculations, time planning of the building process, and other documentation.

Trans-Mississippi Exposition

The 1898 Trans Mississippi and International Exposition was a World's Fair-like event that required the construction of many buildings. Kimball and Walker were named co-architects-in-chief for the event. The two men were responsible for the overall site development, including perimeter buildings. They designed several major buildings, some smaller structures and the Arch of States (a main entrance). "The other 'name' architects who were there did a main building and nothing else," Batie said.

The buildings were constructed of strips of wood covered with staff, which was a mixture of plaster and horsehair. They were temporary by design, built at about half the cost of permanent buildings. The lower cost allowed the construction of larger structures. Kimball was already successful, but his Exhibition work made him even more so. Kimball won commissions for major new projects, such as St. Cecilia Cathedral and the Fontenelle Hotel in Omaha, and the Electricity Building at the 1904 World's Fair in St. Louis. [7]

Late career

By 1918, he had gained tremendous stature among his peers and was elected national president of the American Institute of Architects, an office he held until 1920. Kimball was involved in many architecture-related activities, including supervision of the 1920 design contest that selected Bertram Goodhue as architect of the Nebraska State Capitol.

In 1927, Kimball went into a partnership with architects William L. Steele (1875–1949) and Josiah D. Sandham (1880–1969) to form the firm Kimball, Steele, and Sandham. Among other commissions, the firm designed the Second Church of Christ Scientist (Minneapolis, 1930) and with George B. Prinz were associate architects on the Federal Office Building (Omaha, 1933). However, Kimball functioned primarily as a consultant, having stopped working as an active architect. [8] [9]

Death and legacy

Kimball's success could not survive the Great Depression, which hurt him financially. He died a pauper in 1934. Upon his death, partner William L. Steele remarked that Kimball "did not...as the majority of his contemporaries did, absorb a repertoire of French tricks and come home. He studied architecture as building, not as merely drawings of the buildings. He seemed to have acquired at an early age that grasp of fundamental principles which was to keep him from being stampeded by passing fads." [10]

In 2017, Kimball was selected as the 26th member of the Nebraska Hall of Fame. In 2019, he was formally inducted with the creation of a bust of his likeness to be displayed in the Nebraska State Capitol. [11]

Notable designs

Burlington Station, Hastings, Nebraska, 1908 19950723 01 Burlington Northern Hastings, Nebraska (5361370446).jpg
Burlington Station, Hastings, Nebraska, 1908
Keystone, Nebraska Community Church, 1908 Keystone, Nebraska Little Church from SW.jpg
Keystone, Nebraska Community Church, 1908
The Nash Block, a 1905 design in Downtown Omaha. Nash Building.jpg
The Nash Block, a 1905 design in Downtown Omaha.
One of Kimball's earliest, this is the 1929 remodeling of his 1898 Burlington Station. OmahaBurlingtonStation.jpg
One of Kimball's earliest, this is the 1929 remodeling of his 1898 Burlington Station.
Oscar Roeser House, Grand Island, Nebraska, 1908 Roeser house from NE 2.jpg
Oscar Roeser House, Grand Island, Nebraska, 1908
The 1908 Webster Telephone Exchange in North Omaha shows a change in styles. Webster Telephone Exchange-Afro-American Museum, North Omaha.jpg
The 1908 Webster Telephone Exchange in North Omaha shows a change in styles.
St. Cecilia took more than 50 years to construct. OmahaNE StCecilia.jpg
St. Cecilia took more than 50 years to construct.
Notable designs by Thomas Rogers Kimballalphabetical order
NameBuiltLocationNotes
All Saint's Episcopal Church190626th and Dewey AvenueKimball took the contract for designing this building away from John McDonald, another influential architect in Omaha, after a fire destroyed the original church. He designed a parish house and church, both of which were demolished in 1966 when the church moved to another location. [12]
Battle Mountain Sanitarium 1898 Hot Springs, South Dakota Designed in a star pattern for sun and air, today the building is known as the Domiciliary at the Hot Springs Medical Center of the VA Black Hills Health Care System. [13]
Breckenridge/Gordon Residence 19093611 Jackson Street, OmahaA family residence listed on the NRHP. [14]
Burlington Headquarters Building 18791002-1006 Farnam Street, OmahaThis Downtown Omaha landmark sits on the Gene Leahy Mall, and was rehabilitated by Kimball in 1879. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places, or NRHP. [15]
Burlington Station 1900First Street and St. Joseph's Avenue, Hastings, Nebraska Added to the NRHP in 1978. It was renovated in 1966 and 2000.
Burlington Train Station 1898925 South 10th Street, OmahaAdded to the NRHP in 1974; currently used as the studio facility for Omaha's ABC affiliate, television station KETV (channel 7).
Dome Lake Club189556 Dee Drive, Sheridan, Wyoming This private fishing club is located near the Bighorn National Forest. [16]
F.P. Kirkendall House19013727 Jackson Street, OmahaRanking among the largest of the Gold Coast Historic District homes, this house has won several awards. [17]
Gallagher Residence1904513 South 38th Street, OmahaA prominent home throughout its life, it was designed for Ben Gallagher, the founder of the Paxton and Gallagher Wholesale Grocery Company in pioneer Omaha. It was demolished in 1967. [18]
Hall County Courthouse 1904422 West 1st Street, Grand Island, Nebraska This building serves Hall County government offices, and was added to the NRHP in 1977. [19]
Hotel Fontenelle 19141806 Douglas Street, OmahaThis building was demolished in 1983.
Keystone Community Church1908 Keystone, Nebraska The church has a Catholic altar on one end, a Protestant lectern at the other, and hinged pews to make the seats reversible. [20]
Mary Rogers Kimball House 19052236 St. Mary's Avenue, OmahaBuilt close to her son's home, this house is the only remaining example of the numerous upscale homes that used to sit on St. Mary's. It is listed on the NRHP. [21]
Medical Arts Building192617th and Dodge Streets, OmahaOriginally designed as an all-in-one medical office and laboratory facility, Kimball withdrew when the builders went bankrupt. He eventually sold the plans to John McDonald, a local competitor. The building was demolished in 1999. [22]
Monmouth Park School 19034508 North 33rd Street, OmahaAdded to the NRHP in 1983, this building was converted to apartments in 1985.
Nash Block 1905902 Farnam Street, OmahaAdded to the NRHP in 1985, this building is currently apartments. [23]
Nebraska Telephone Company Building 1894128-130 S. 13th Street, Lincoln, Nebraska Listed on the NRHP. [16] [24]
Old Administration Building1903 University of Nebraska at Lincoln campusThis building was razed in 1963. [1] [25]
Omaha Country Club 1900 [16]
Omaha Public Library 18921823 Harney Street, OmahaCalled "one of the most significant structures in Nebraska", this building sits on land originally donated to the city by local real estate mogul Byron Reed. It was Kimball's first commission in Omaha, and served as the public library in Omaha until 1977, when afterwards it was converted to offices, in which capacity it still serves. It is listed on the NRHP. [26]
Oscar Roeser House1908721 W. Koenig Street, Grand Island, Nebraska
Packers National Bank 19074939 South 24th Street, OmahaLocated in the South Omaha Main Street Historic District, this building serves as offices today, and is listed on the NRHP individually. [27]
Park School 19181320 South 29th Street, OmahaNamed for its proximity to Hanscom Park, this building was sold by Omaha Public Schools in 1988 and converted to apartments. [28]
Paxton and Gallagher Warehouse 1908901-909 Jones Street, OmahaCurrently serves as apartments. [29]
Richard R. Kimball Residence 19011235 Park Wild Avenue, OmahaBuilt for Kimball's brother, a prominent automobile dealer, this house was demolished in the mid 1960s. [30]
St. Cecilia Cathedral 1905701 North 40th Street, OmahaCompleted in 1959, Kimball's original designs were altered by later architects.
St. Francis Cabrini Church 19081335 South 10th Street, OmahaBuilt as St. Philomena's Cathedral, this structure retained cathedral status until St. Cecilia's Cathedral was substantially completed around 1916. [31]
St. Philomena's Catholic Church 19081335 South 10th StreetConsidered one of Kimball's best works, this building is listed on the NRHP, and is currently named St. Francis Cabrini. [32]
Second Church of Christ Scientist (now Ivy Hotel) 19301115 2nd Avenue South, Minneapolis, Minnesota A locally designated landmark, this building is a rare example of the Ziggurat form in the city. [33]
South Omaha Public Library 19042302 M Street, OmahaThis Carnegie library was designed to be reminiscent of a small Italian Renaissance palazzo. It was demolished in 1953 and replaced with a modern library at the same location. [34]
Thomas R. Kimball Residence 19052450 St. Mary's Avenue, OmahaCurved drives, elevated gardens and illustrious landscaping surrounded this multi-towered, seven-chimneyed building with design elements from many styles. It was demolished six years after Kimball's death and replaced with a grocery store and parking lot. [35]
Wattles House 1895320 South 37th Street, OmahaBanker Gurdon Wattles lived here for 25 years, during which time he planned the Trans-Mississippi and International Exposition, among his many ventures. [36]
Webster Telephone Exchange Building 19072213 Lake Street, OmahaServing as a telephone exchange, emergency morgue, community center, and museum has not saved this building from disrepair. [37]
William F. Baxter Residence 1926410 South Elwood BoulevardOne of the last large residential plans by Kimball before he died, this home is on the University of Nebraska at Omaha campus and is threatened by a student housing project. [38] [39]

Kimball also designed the original Omaha World-Herald building, the First National Bank in Grand Island and the Hastings, Nebraska Railroad Station. At the Trans-Mississippi and International Exposition he prepared the layout for the park and designed the Arch of the States, the Administration Building, Transportation Building, and the Boys' and Girls' Building. [6]

See also

Related Research Articles

Architecture in Omaha, Nebraska represents a range of cultural influences and social changes occurring from the late 19th century to present.

Webster Telephone Exchange Building building in Omaha, Nebraska, United States

The Webster Telephone Exchange Building is located at 2213 Lake Street in North Omaha, Nebraska. It was designed by the well-known Omaha architect Thomas Rogers Kimball. After the Easter Sunday Tornado of 1913, the building was used as the center of recovery operations. In 1933, American Bell donated the building to the Omaha Urban League.

Flatiron Hotel

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Magnolia Hotel (Omaha)

The Magnolia Hotel, formerly known as the Aquila Court Building and before that as the Sheraton Omaha, is located at 1615 Howard Street in downtown Omaha, Nebraska. Built in 1923, it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1974.

Nash Block

The Nash Block, also known as the McKesson-Robbins Warehouse and currently as The Greenhouse, is located at 902-912 Farnam Street in Omaha, Nebraska. Designed by Thomas R. Kimball and built in 1907, the building is the last remnant of Downtown Omaha's Jobbers Canyon. It was named an Omaha Landmark in 1978, and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1985.

Edgar Zabriskie Residence building in Omaha, Nebraska, United States

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Packers National Bank Building building in Nebraska, United States

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Hotel Fontenelle

Hotel Fontenelle was an upscale hotel located at 1806 Douglas Street in downtown Omaha, Nebraska. Designed by noted architect Thomas Rogers Kimball in the Late Gothic Revival style, it was built in 1914 and demolished in 1983. It was named after Logan Fontenelle, an interpreter for the Omaha Tribe when it ceded land to the U.S. government which became the city of Omaha.

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Burlington Headquarters Building

The Burlington Headquarters Building, also called Burlington Place, is located at 1004 Farnam Street in Downtown Omaha, Nebraska. This four-story brick building was originally designed by Alfred R. Dufrene and built in 1879 next to Jobbers Canyon. It was redesigned by noted Omaha architect Thomas R. Kimball in 1899, and vacated by the railroad in 1966. The building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1974, designated an Omaha Landmark in 1978, and rehabilitated in 1983. Today it is office space.

Paxton Hotel

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The Redick Mansion, also known as the Mayne Mansion and Redick Hall, was located at 3612 North 24th Street in North Omaha, Nebraska. It served as the first home of Omaha University, now known as the University of Nebraska at Omaha, from 1909 through 1917. A five story tower on the front of the mansion was a notable landmark throughout the area.

South Omaha Public Library

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Breckenridge–Gordon House

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Trinity Cathedral (Omaha, Nebraska)

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St. Martin of Tours Episcopal Church church building in Omaha, United States of America

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