The Architecture of Grosvenor Atterbury
By Peter Pennoyer & Anne Walker
IN THE FINAL DECADE OF the nineteenth century and the early twentieth century, the United States experienced exponential growth and a flourishing economy, and with it, a building boom; architects could hardly keep pace with the demand for rambling summer cottages, country estates, and city mansions to house the swelling numbers of affluent financiers, lawyers, and manufacturers. But one architect took a somewhat different approach, and as a result is hailed as one of the most influential architects, town planners, and inventors of the first half of the twentieth century.
Grosvenor Atterbury (1869–1956) produced more than one hundred major projects, including an array of grand mansions, picturesque estates, informal summer cottages, and farm groups. However, it was his role as town planner and civic leader and his work to create model tenements, hospitals, workers’ housing, and town plans for which he is most celebrated. His Forest Hills Gardens, designed in association with the Olmsted Brothers, is lauded as one of the most highly significant community planning projects of its time. As an inventor, Atterbury was responsible for one of the country’s first low-cost, prefabricated concrete construction systems, introducing beauty and inexpensive good design into the lives of the working classes.
The Architecture of Grosvenor Atterbury is the first book to showcase the rich and varied repertoire of this prolific architect whose career spanned six decades and whose work affected the course of American architecture, planning, and construction. Illustrated with Jonathan Wallen’s stunning color photographs and over 250 historic drawings, plans, and photographs, it is the definitive source of an architect who made an indelible imprint on the American landscape.