50-52 East 41st Street: Chemist Club (now Dylan Hotel)

(2) Chemist Club (now Dylan Hotel), 50-52 East 41st Street York & Sawyer, 1910   Built FAR:  11.2 proposed 21.6

Chemists’ Club, now Dylan Hotel
50-52 East 41st Street
York & Sawyer, 1910

The Chemists’ Club was founded in 1898 as an outgrowth of the American Chemical Society and its active New York Section (the New York Section of the Society of Chemical Industry). The club was the first professional club for chemists and was an effort by members of this profession, both in academia and in industry, to provide a home for professional lectures and socializing on the same lines as the Engineers Club and other professional club organizations. At its founding, the club had 154 members. The club published journals, developed a library, and became a center for lectures and for meetings among chemists. Under the leadership of New York University chemistry professor Morris Loeb and with his generous financial assistance (he was a member of a wealthy banking family), the club purchased land on East 41st Street between Madison and Park Avenues for a new club house. The design of the Classical Revival style building was by York & Sawyer, a prominent firm that was responsible for many of New York’s finest classical-inspired buildings of the first decades of the twentieth century. The ten-story building was officially owned by the Chemists’ Building Corporation, with Professor Loeb as president. The lower five floors of the building were devoted to club needs, including a large lecture hall and space for the library of the American Chemical Society. An unusual feature, but one appropriate to a club for chemists, was the appearance of laboratories on the upper floors. The club sold the building in the 1970s and it is now a boutique hotel that preserves some of the original interiors. The club itself is still active, meeting at the Penn Club on West 44th Street.

References:

“Chemists Have a Dinner,” New York Times, March 19, 1911, 7.

Killeffer, D. H., Six Decades of The Chemists’ Club (New York: The Chemsists’ Club, 1957.)

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