36 Walker St., Leonard C. Peters Block – 1917

36 Walker St, Peters Block - 1917
36 Walker St., Leonard C. Peters Block – 1917

From Surveys Completed 2012-2013 by the Lenox Historical Commission

ARCHITECTURAL DESCRIPTION:

This Tudor Revival style building has two stories, an asphalt shingle roof, and is intact. This structure has 5-bay, brick & wood framed construction and a hipped roof with shed-roofed dormers. There is brick cladding on the 1st floor laid up in English bond with stucco with half-timbering on the upper story, and wood shingles on the dormer sides. The articulated 2nd floor overhangs the front façade, and is supported by large wood brackets with sets of 3 windows flanking a center bay w/4 windows – all 4-o-4. There are leaded 12-light transoms over 3-part storefront windows. The recessed Left side ell has a gable roof which is 2-bays wide & has a steeply pitched canopy over the entry to the 2nd floor. The door has 3 vertical panels with decorative wood graining and a 6-light leaded glass window; pent between the 2nd floor and the attic level in the Left side ell. There is a 1-story rear ell and a rear wall chimney between the main house and the rear ell. The foundation is concrete.

Harding and Seaver Architects

George C. Harding (1867-4/23/1921)

“Senior member of the firm of Harding & Seaver, architects of several noted public buildings in the New England area. Mr. Harding was a native and life-long citizen of Pittsfield, educated in architecture at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and had been active professionally since 1896. After working alone for a time, in 1902 he formed a partnership with Henry M. Seaver, and under the firm name acquired a wide and successful practice. His most important works include the following buildings: Museum of Natural History and Art at Pittsfield, 1907; the Y.M.C.A. Building, 1908; Lathrop Hall, 1905, and Memorial Chapel, 1914, at Colgate University, Hamilton, N.Y.; Town Hall at Lennox, Mass., 1903, and Colby Academy at New London, N.H. Mr. Harding also designed a number of fine homes, one distinguished example being the country house of former Senator Crane at Dalton, Mass.” [1]

From MACRIS List – Sept. 16, 2008

Inv. No Property Name Street City/Town Year Built
LEN.25 Lenox Town Hall 6 Walker St Lenox 1901
LEN.296 Slater, William House 249 Under Mountain Rd Lenox 1901
LEN.23 Curtis Hotel 6 Main St Lenox 1829
LEN.19 Hagyard, Frank C. Store 36 Main St Lenox 1910
LEN.100 Hegeman, Annie May House 61 Cliffwood St Lenox 1925
LEN.26 Lenox Fire House 14 Walker St Lenox 1909
LEN.29 Peters, Leonard C. Block 46-50 Walker St Lenox 1917

 

Henry M. Seaver (3/6/1873 –

The Edward A. Jones Memorial Building was designed by Pittsfield architect Henry M. Seaver. He graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1897 and began his own architectural firm in 1901.[2] By 1903 he had entered into a partnership with George C. Harding that lasted until Harding’s death in 1921.[3] During that period the firm designed the YMCA Building in Pittsfield; the Chapel at Colgate University in central New York; the Museum of Natural History and Art in Pittsfield; the Colby Academy in New London, New Hampshire; and the Lenox Town Hall.[4] After Harding’s death in 1921, Seaver kept the office open through 1933, during which time he designed the Jones building at the House of Mercy. Other buildings for which he was responsible in this period include the R.J. Flick Residence; an addition to the Berkshire Life Building in Pittsfield; and an addition to the Pittsfield Boys Club Building. He was also an associate architect on the Pittsfield High School Building.[5]

HISTORICAL NARRATIVE

This building was built as a combination commercial and residential structure, with retail space on the first floor and an apartment below. In 1918, it housed an antique shop and the first Lenox savings Bank, with the owner of the building, Leonard C. Peters, residing upstairs. The Peters family has retained ownership of the building, and although the businesses have changed the commercial/residential mix has stayed the same.

Eventually the antique shop was replaced by a medical office, and in 1957/8 the bank and medical office were replaced by Talbot’s Dress Shop. On July 31, 1979 Talbots The, Inc. took over ownership.

BIBLIOGRAPHY and/or REFERENCES

Jane Peters Heathfield

Registry of Deeds (Book 384, p.244)

[1] Henry F. Withey, AIA and Elsie Rathburn Withey, Biographical Dictionary of American Architects (Deceased)(Los Angeles: Hennessey & Ingalls, Inc., 1970) p. 264.

[2] Berkshire Athenaeum/Pittsfield Library, History Department, Architects file.

[3] Henry F. Withey, AIA and Elsie Rathburn Withey, Biographical Dictionary of American Architects (Deceased)(Los Angeles: Hennessey & Ingalls, Inc., 1970) p 264.

[4] Massachusetts Cultural Resource Inventory System (MACRIS) online at: <http://mhc-macris.net>

[5] Berkshire Athenaeum/Pittsfield Library, History Department, Architects file.

 

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