James Betelle, Where Are You?

The Search for a Lost Architect

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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

“A Simple But Impressive Ceremony”

October 22nd, 2011 · No Comments · Biographical

James Betelle’s death is one of the more curious aspects of his story.  He died in Italy, ending up in an unmarked pauper’s grave, while in Delaware, a stone with his name on it sits quietly in an old cemetery. How did he come to be buried (as it were), in two places? I’ve already […]

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The Point of Pencils

June 20th, 2009 · No Comments · Biographical, Miscellaneous

The output of new works from Guilbert & Betelle plummeted in the 1930s, as the Depression caused a suspension of school infrastructure programs. The firm layed off most of the staff, which numbered over 200 just a few years earlier. Reduced to minor, low profile jobs—building service upgrades, interior renovations—James Betelle had little need to […]

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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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Luck Be a Lady Betelle

August 27th, 2006 · No Comments · Diary

As satisfying as it is to find an elusive publication, photograph or news item I had been looking for, even more thrilling is finding material I wasn’t looking for. I had a lot of this recently. Last week I came into posession a stack of letter between Betelle and Pierre S. duPont regarding the schools […]

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“A Great Architect”

August 13th, 2006 · No Comments · Articles, Biographical

This article appeared in the October, 1929 issue of Fortune Story magazine. Fortune Story was a 15¢ pulp magazine filled with these kinds of up-lifting, moralistic tales aimed at impressionable younger readers. The only new information it garnered was G&B’s first office being “in an attic room over an art store”, but the writing is […]

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