James Betelle, Where Are You?

The Search for a Lost Architect

James Betelle, Where Are You? header image 1

The public schools are in the place to us of arms and troops and fleets. They are the nurseries of men. — Rev G. Doane, Inscription on the Cleveland School, Newark

Entries from September 2006

“Modern American Schoolhouses – Some Recent Examples of Specialized Buildings”

September 21st, 2006 · 1 Comment · Architecture, Articles

The following excerpts are from Modern American Schoolhouses – Some Recent Examples of Specialized Buildings Guilbert & Betelle, Architects by Rawson W. Haddon in The Architectural Record, September 1914. This lengthy article is a survey of the firm’s work of that period, before the death of Guilbert. The author ruminates on the not-strictly Gothic eclecticism […]

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Betelle Retires

September 12th, 2006 · No Comments · Biographical

In a hand-written letter to the American Institute of Architects, Betelle announced his (very deserved, in my opinion) retirement. It’s not specified what the bill he requests is for (probably his dues), nor, unfortunately, did my photocopy show his new office address. The letter was dated received by the AIA December 21st, 1939. Courtesy of […]

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Columbia High School: Birth of a Building

September 9th, 2006 · 24 Comments · Architecture

I’m used to seeing old photographs of schools when they were new and pristine, set against the barren terrain that is indicative of fresh construction. And as my recent tour of Newark showed, it makes for an interesting contrast with contemporary images, where the landscape is overgrown and the school itself may be in various […]

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Marie Betelle Sleeps with the Fishes

September 5th, 2006 · No Comments · Diary

This morning I went down to the Surrogate Court Building in New York to find information on Marie Betelle. According to her obituary, she died living in NYC, so I was hoping to both find a copy of her will and perhaps see what her building looked like (my first walk around that area revealed […]

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“New School Buildings, State of Delaware”

September 3rd, 2006 · No Comments · Articles

The following excerpts are from a lengthy article by Betelle that appeared in The American Architect, Vol. CXVII, Number 2321, June 16, 1920. In it, he outlines the roots of Pierre S. duPont’s epic rural school-building plan for the State of Delaware and the civic, educational and personal benefits it would bring to the citizens […]

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