long-forgotten 1948 silver gelatin prints of adler and sullivan's walker warehouse (1889) discovered and digitized.

i recently discovered a collection of long-forgotten mounted silver gelatin photographic prints of adler and sullivan's james a. walker & sons warehouse building - as it appeared in the summer of 1948 - while working on the richard nickel archive housed at ryerson and burnham, art institute of chicago. . the dated and signed prints were exhibited (gallery unknown) the same year the images were taken. the photographer is identified as walter allen (hand-written, verso).


five years later, and shortly before the building was demolished, aaron siskind and his id students documented the building for the adler and sullivan photo project held between 1953-1956.

i should note that both william g. purcell and ralph marlow line photographed walker in the 1940's, but their images don't surface often.

adler & sullivan's walker company store and warehouse (1888-89). photograph taken by w.g. purcell in the 1940's (need to double-check date). silver gelatin print gifted to tim samuelson by richard nickel. indiana limestone ornament was salvaged prior to demolition in 1953. note the brown brothers cast iron sidewalk panels or vault lights in the foreground

i've have never seen the walker (including that single interior shot) in such detail. the exterior signage plastered across the facade offers much-needed insight into the occupants who resided within.

i have so many questions... i hope - when time permits - to learn more about this photographer, the unidentified exhibit, and whether additional images of the walker or other chicago buildings taken by allen exist - especially interiors.

1889 lithograph of adler & sullivan's james a. walker & company wholesale dry goods warehouse (1888-89) shortly after it was completed. demolished in 1953.

courtesy of ryerson and burnham archive, art institute of chicago.

FURTHER READING:

A PHOTOGRAPHIC STUDY OF LIMESTONE ORNAMENT SALVAGED IN 1953 FROM ADLER & SULLIVAN'S WALKER WAREHOUSE

BLDG. 51 MUSEUM SECURES LARGE COLLECTION OF ORIGINAL INSTITUTE OF DESIGN "SULLIVAN PROJECT" PHOTOGRAPHS FROM 1956 EXHIBIT

Leave a Reply

Sorry, you must be logged in to post a comment.