Germania Life Insurance Company Building

STATUS Designated Individual Landmark

50 Union Square East

ARCHITECT: D'Oench & Yost

DATE: 1910-11

STYLE: French Second Empire

East Village French Second Empire Manhattan

This twenty-story commercial building, crowned by an early and impressive example of modern signage, was designed by the architectural firm of D’Oench & Yost and built in 1910-11 as the national headquarters for the Germania Life Insurance Company of New York. The building is a tripartite columnar skyscraper which incorporates in its design motifs from traditional European architecture, most prominently the grand four-story mansard roof with varied dormer windows. The mansard roof and other features tie the building’s design to French architecture, both the Second Empire style and the modern French mode that dominated Parisian architecture of the 1890s.

STATUS Designated Individual Landmark

Take Action

Add the next LPC meeting to your calendar.

Let your local representative know you care.

Share your photos of this neighborhood

Help preserve New York’s architectural history with a contribution to HDC

$10 $25 $50
Other >
The Neighborhood

East Village

Aaron Dexter, Academic Classic, Adamesque, Addisleigh Park, Admiral's Row, African American, Al Smith, American Aesthetic, American Art Deco, American Colonial, ... VIEW ALL

Explore the Neighborhood >

Local Voices

“I don’t know what the City would be without HDC. [They] testified before LPC time after time and helped us focus on the right issues. We would not be an historic district without HDC! ”

Doreen Gallo: DUMBO Neighborhood Alliance

Local Voices

“Use HDC as a resource because they know what they are doing and can offer advice on how to go about creating a district from every front: architectural, political, LPC, and the media. I had floundered prior to my involvement with this invaluable organization.”

Fern Luskin: Lamartine Place Historic District; Friends of Lamartine Place & Gibbons Underground Railroad Site

Local Voices

“HDC provided guidance and shared information during that process—we knew which Council members were going one way or another and we changed a few minds. I don’t think NoHo would have had as cohesive a district had it not been for HDC’s aid.”

Zella Jones: NoHo Historic District; NoHo East; and NoHo Extension

Local Voices

“I remember Richard saying at a meeting, we have someone here from HDC, Nadezhda Williams, Director of Preservation and Research, to help us. She said to us, ‘You are not the only ones going through this.’ HDC included us in an enormous community”

Erika Petersen: West End Preservation Society