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Carnegie BuildingDesignated: Landmark Building Exterior
July 10, 1990

141 Carnegie Way
Fronting 172.76' on the northeast side of Carnegie Way at the southeast corner of Ellis Street and Carnegie Way
District 14, Land Lot 78
Fulton County, City of Atlanta
Existing Zoning SPI-1

Constructed: 1925
Architect: G. Lloyd Preacher

SIGNIFICANCE/ANALYSIS

The Carnegie Building is a twelve-story office building of reinforced concrete construction with brick veneer and limestone detailing. Originally known as the Wynne-Claughton Building (1925- 1929), later as the Mortgage Guaranty Building (1929-1962), and more recently as the Carnegie Building (1963-1989), it was hailed by the Atlanta Constitution upon its completion in 1925. According to the headlines of the Constitution's special Wynne-Claughton Section: "Opening of Wynne-Claughton Building Marks Epoch in Construction History of the South." Regarded as a very good example of the late Commercial style, the Carnegie Building combines pre-modern elements with some applied ornament in the Beaux Arts Style. Its curved corners respond to the difficult triangular site which once faced the main entrance to the Carnegie Library designed by the New York architects Ackerman & Ross. Despite the demolition of the Carnegie Library, the Carnegie Building remains among a cluster of other early twentieth century buildings including the Winecoff Hotel built in 1913 and Macy's (Davison's) built in 1927.

Morgan T. Wynne began his real estate career in Atlanta with the real estate management firm of S.B. Turman & Co. Samuel Boykin Turman had established his business in the early 1890s offering real estate rentals, mortgage loans, and insurance. After his brief tenure with Turman, Wynne ventured into private practice on August 1, 1923 as president of the Wynne Realty Company, with a capital stock of $100,000. Very quickly in his career, Wynne expanded and diversified. On September 1, 1923 Wynne formed a partnership with John Crowell and established the Wynne-Crowell Insurance Company. He formed a partnership in October of 1923 with the financial consultant Edward N. Claughton. In 1924, the Wynne-Claughton Company was located in the Wynne Building at 105 Ivy Street. The business included Morgan T. Wynne, president, real estate & renting; Edward Claughton, vice-president; John Crowell, insurance specialist; and Garnett Arnold, "negro property specialist."

The Wynne-Claughton Realty Sales Corporation provided the name for the skyscraper which, according to the city building permit, was begun on July 3, 1924 and completed on the site of the former Ewell Hotel at a cost of $890,000 on April 11, 1989.

Prior to 1925, the corporation built, owned, and promoted among other Atlanta buildings, the St. Andrews Apartments (595 West Peachtree). Upon completion of the Wynne-Claughton Building, the agency served as exclusive agents for the North Park Apartments (956 Piedmont), Elmwood Apartments (1422 Peachtree), Belmont Apartments (190 Ponce de Leon), Greenbriar Apartments (58 Briarcliff), Bedell Apartments (435 North Jackson), Venetia Apartments (431 North Jackson), Elizabeth Terrace Apartments (12 Elizabeth), Blue Ridge Apartments (820-824 Blue Ridge), Seminole Apartments (868 E. North), Severn Apartments (167 Blue Ridge), Wynnton Apartments (701 Highland), Wynndham Apartments (759 Highland), Wynnesmere Apartments (747 Highland), Thompson Apartments (349 North Jackson), Tutwiler Apartments (380 E. North), and Vernon Apartments (61 E. Cain). The monthly rentals of the company in April 1925 totaled $150,000.

The building trades which participated in the construction and finishing of the Wynne-Claughton Building are well noted in contemporary accounts. Plumbing contracting for the building was provided by one of Atlanta's oldest plumbing firms, Stephenson & Company. P.L. Gomez & Company, plastering contractors for the job, had previous Atlanta commissions which included the Hurt Building, the 101 Marietta Street Building, the Canterbury Manor Apartments, and the Henry Grady Hotel. Interior decoration was contracted with William Wilson & Co. which completed the interior effects of the Biltmore Hotel, the Hurt Building, the Henry Grady Hotel, Fulton County Courthouse, and the Healey Building. The Atlanta Constitution reported on April 12, 1925:

many new devices and a constantly widening range of materials have been brought into the field of interior decorating, and it is today regarded as one of the most important phases of the building trade.

Among those firms which contributed to the design and construction of the Wynne-Claughton Building, two relocated their offices into the completed building, G. Lloyd Preacher & Associates and the Gude Construction Company. Among the other early tenants were Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau (1925+); Association of County Commissioners (1925+); Christian Science Reading Room (1926+); Knights of KKK (State Headquarters, 1926+); the Oakland Motor Car Company (1927+); and the Jeffersonian Searchlight (1928+).

GEOFFREY LLOYD PREACHER

"Atlanta's Hotel Architectural & Engineering Firm" of G. Lloyd Preacher provided the design of the Wynne-Claughton Building. G. Lloyd Preacher was born in 1882 at Fairfax, South Carolina and graduated in 1904 with a degree in engineering and architecture from Clemson College. He served as draftsman for the Lombard Iron Works in Augusta, Georgia from June 1904 until 1909. The 1909 Augusta Directory indicates Preacher was in business with Arthur Holman, advertising as civil and mechanical engineers. In 1911 Preacher won the design competition for the Augusta Fire Headquarters building and his architectural career was launched. From 1912, G. Lloyd Preacher dominated the design market in Augusta. Preacher was named secretary of the newly created Georgia Board of Architects (a regulatory body created by the State Legislature) and he most probably came to Atlanta in 1922.

In Atlanta, he designed the Bon Air Apartments located at 908 Juniper Street in 1922. Other commissions include the Standard Building (1923); Henry Grady Hotel (1924) and Theatre (1926); Atlanta City Hall (1927-30); and Bass High School (1928). His list of commissions is voluminous and includes 417 buildings in seven states. Of these, 290 buildings are in Georgia and at least 100 are located in Atlanta. He designed 45 schools in Atlanta and provided designs for a total of 87 schools between the years 1911 and 1930. Among his commissions were 45 hotels and 29 apartment buildings.

Preacher closed his office in 1934 and entered government work for the Homeowners Loan Corporation. His sons, G. Lloyd, Jr. and Jack, reopened their father's office from 1947 to 1950, when G. Lloyd, Sr. returned to Atlanta to practice until 1954. Preacher died June 17, 1972.

REFERENCES

Adams, Julian Wade. "G. Lloyd Preacher, Southern Architect: A Study of His Career," A Thesis submitted to the Graduate faculty of the University of Georgia, 1987.

The Atlanta Constitution. "Opening of the Wynne-Claughton Building Marks Epoch in Construction History of the South," April 12, 1925.

Atlanta's Lasting Landmarks, Atlanta Urban Design Commission, 1987.

CRITERIA
(criteria descriptions)

Group I (1) (2) (3)
Group II (1) (3) (6) (7) (9) (10) (11)
Group III (1) (2) (3)

FINDINGS

The proposed nomination of the Carnegie Building meets the above-referenced criteria for a Landmark Building or Site as set out in Section 16-20.004 of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Atlanta.

Contact Info
City of Atlanta
Atlanta Urban Design Commission
(AUDC)
55 Trinity Avenue, Suite 3400
Atlanta, Georgia 30335-0331

Tel: 404.330.6200
Fax: 404.658.6734

Doug Young
dyoung@atlantaga.gov

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Last updated: 6/11/2013 1:43:30 PM