James Betelle, Where Are You?

The Search for a Lost Architect

James Betelle, Where Are You? header image 1

An architect should be a man with broad cultural training, and conversant and familiar with all topics and things. — James O. Betelle

Down Wilmington Way

May 27th, 2008 · 1 Comment · Architecture, Biographical, Diary

In March, 2008, I took a three-day excursion to James Betelle’s hometown of Wilmington, Delaware. My plan was to visit a few research libraries, see significant locations, and, well, just get a sense of where Betelle came from. What follows is a recreation of the trip presented in the dramatic diary format. Thursday, March 13. […]

[Read more →]

Tags:···

Schools of Summit, New Jersey

May 14th, 2008 · No Comments · Architecture, Diary

After completing my tour of CHS’s clock tower on a Saturday morning in April, I continued on to check out the Guilbert & Betelle schools built in the nearby town of Summit. The firm designed the high school and a number of grade schools, much as they did in South Orange and Maplewood, so I […]

[Read more →]

Tags:·

A Climb Up Columbia’s Clock Tower

April 10th, 2008 · 5 Comments · Architecture, Diary

This past Saturday I had the rare treat of being given a tour of the clock room and astronomical observatory of Columbia High School in Maplewood, New Jersey. As an alumnus of CHS, the massive clock tower has always been a source of some mystery. Lucky students have the chance to climb it, either for […]

[Read more →]

Tags:···

The State Normal School at Jersey City

January 23rd, 2008 · 1 Comment · Architecture

“On February, 1930, we the class of January 1933, entered the portals of the State Normal School at Jersey City. Bewildered, cautious, lest we commit a grave offense, we wandered aimlessly about the halls. Attention was called to the foyer, the library, and the auditorium. We fairly drank in the beauty of a school so […]

[Read more →]

Tags:·

The Ghost of New Rochelle High School

July 5th, 2007 · 59 Comments · Architecture, Diary

My first exposure to New Rochelle High School was a series of photographs in a 1932 article on school architecture written by James Betelle. While I had been pretty familiar with the traditional English Gothic and Neo-Classical designs of his schools, this one stood out as unique; it had a style unlike any other. Towers, […]

[Read more →]

Tags:··