American Telephone & Telegraph Company Building – Exterior and Interior

STATUS Designated Exterior and Interior Landmark

195 Broadway

ARCHITECT: William Welles Bosworth

DATE: 1912-16

STYLE: Greek-inspired Neo-Classical

Greek-inspired Lower Manhattan Manhattan Neo-Classical

Designated  7/25/2006

The American Telephone & Telegraph Company Building is an important example of early-twentieth-century Greek-inspired neo-Classical design. Envisioned by company president Theodore Newton Vail as a grand corporate symbol, this granite-clad building was designed to create an impression of quality, durability, and permanence expressive of the Telephone Company’s commitment to public service. Inspired by classical Greek and Roman models, the architect created a restrained design incorporating eight three-story high Ionic colonnades stacked on a double-height base of colossal columns copied from the Doric order of the Athenian Parthenon.

The first floor was designed to create an impression of quality, durability, and permanence expressive of the Telephone Company’s commitment to public service. Inspired by classical Greek and Egyptian temple designs, the lobby is treated as a grand hypostyle hall with forty massive marble columns, walls and floors clad in marble, and a polychrome coffered ceiling. This  interior melds art with architecture through its incorporation of classically-inspired marble friezes of putti carrying garlands by the renowned sculptors Paul Manship and Gaston Lachaise.

STATUS Designated Exterior and Interior Landmark

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