Archive for the ‘Sean Cosgriff’ Category

Week One Research: Cast Iron/Steel Beam Morphology

March 8, 2012

Week One Research Project

Reading: Cast Iron America


-To read the Origins of Cast Iron Construction to understand the utilitas/ veritas and the origination of iron and how it came to be one of the most popular construction components


1.)  Bogardus, James, Daniel D. Badger, and John W. Thomson. The Origins of Cast Iron Architecture in America. New York: Da Capo, 1970. Print.

Preface/Reflections of Source:

-My initial though was that this source would be poor to use because of its lack of discussion of Steel beams and its focus on Iron beam.  But, as I continued reading and skimming through the source I found that it was giving me a great a background and build up to the use of Iron in America and what that showed about the utilitas of a building as well as the veritas.  Thus, this sources ability to give a solid background will help me comprehend the foundation of the sources that I will research in the upcoming weeks.

Summary of Reading

-Cast Iron became popular in architecture around the 1850 and was used regular until the 1880’s in the American culture.  At first cast iron was received from the British and was shipped.  This lead to very expensive cost and thus the buildings that implemented cast iron were buildings that had major finical backing behind them.  Soon advantages were noticed about iron not burning, unless under extremely high temperatures, and its ability to be both tensile and strong within buildings.  This made it very advantageous to use this material to construct buildings with for many reasons.  First, especially during the industrial revolution, fires became very common and would reek havoc upon cities even though it was just started in one building because of the ability of wood to burn.  Thus cast iron was very popular in that aspect especially when firms in the states were created to extract iron ore from the ground and produce iron beams.  Pennsylvania soon became the main manufacturing base for the production of Iron.  This mean that all the cities around that area were the first to implement the use of cast iron as support beams.  This evolution of cast iron began around the 1820’s and by the 1830’s became very popular in cities such as Lancaster and Philadelphia where not only was cast iron produced and used in stores, but were also utilized in different styles of architecture.  The first to use and implement cast iron was in the states and was a mix of both French architecture with cast iron supporting the advanced designs.  One of the main architects that many followed in this movement towards cast iron was James Bogardus.  He played a vital role in proving to the public that cast iron was the next generation of building materials.  He spent most of his career on this objective.  At first though, he was very unsuccessful in changing the current paradigm of architecture, but as time progressed he started a movement that can be seen today and has defined nearly half a century of architecture.

Related Images:

Image 1.) Pg 80

-This image shows a store front, which ascetically looks very similar to the Lancaster buildings (Hardware Store) discussed earlier in the blog. It shows the use of cast iron on each floor to be weight bearing and fire retardant. It also shows how the hidden aspect of the Cast Iron can be used to tell the veritas of a specific building

Image 2.) Pg 87

-This image represents the sectional/floor plan for one of the first buildings to use a cast iron frame. This shows just how the utilitas can be shown through just understand the use of the frame, which acts as the Skelton of the building


Venustas (West King Street)

February 17, 2012

The venustas of this building seems to very modern of redone relatively recently.  The building façade is created both with concrete front that has a grey hue to its appearance.  Yet, the roof of the building keeps with the C. Emblen Urban style, and although at first glance it may look very typical of a street building the design put into the gutter system and frame work is excellent example of a mix of both European and modern American look.

This building is a very typical C. Emlen Urban building.  The front is lined with bricks much like our college, Franklin and Marshall.  Yet, with these bricks is a European type style that adds, like the pervious building, both the American culture and European styles together to form a new style for that time period.  The windows of this building also add to this affective especially the wood stylistic pieces that allow for a very classical look to the building.  Another future that had to be added recently is the addition of 5 lights that shine upon the building during the night to enhance the beauty of the venustas of this architectural piece.

The architectural plan for this building most have been very similar, almost a duplication of the first building discussed in this post.  Yet this building does have minute differences in both hue of the front of the building and also the wood frames around the windows.  Again, like most buildings on this block,  it mixes both an American style with a European effect.  This building has also completely been revamped on the bottom with both a modern entry to the building and an atypical roof over the door into the store.

The style on this building unlike all the others takes on a mostly older American architectural style that is projected from the ground floor of the building through the roof.  Yet, it does maintain some of C. Emlen Urban traits, such as a bricked front and yet unlike the other buildings it lacks the stylistic patterns around the frames of the windows and the roof.  Also like many of the pervious buildings, the front looks like it has been refinished and changed to fit in better with the current style implemented in the city.

Clearly this building was menat to stand out with its gold like appearance to both highlights the building and provides more attraction towards it.  This building was personally my favorite, its ventustas can tell any viewer that this was meant to be an important building that all where meant to view.  Although it is very hard to determine if the clock on this building is a refinished effect it seems to add another feature to the building and again highlight its depth.  The use of bricks is commonly shown, that has been seen in all the other buildings before.  Another common feature is its stylistic roof and windows, which add a European style architectural construction

Although this building is very small it plays a very important role in letting the viewer understand the venustas of buildings.  It seems to be the building that remained the most unchanged.  If one were to view the windows on the top portion of the door these seem to be very similar to what we would expect back in the creation of this building.  Also like all other C. Emlen Urban buildings, this one has a wood façade near the storefront windows and as one moves up the building more and more brick inhibit the façade.  Again both American styles are mixed within European classical styles.

This building is the most typical type of style one might see C. Emlen Urban use. It combines like most of his buildings the classical style with the American style of that time period.  He also adds a wooden façade to the store front with a white hue.  This is meant to attract customers in and allow for more business.  Also the frames not only tell one about style of the building but also highlight the building while adding more color to the brick backdrop that C. Emlen is known for.

The Steinman Hardware building is uncanny to great main that is located on Franklin and Marshalls campus.   Its brick columns and façade make it very similar to old main.  Although it may not reach to the heights or old main it represent a very similar architectural style implemented. Unlike the other building on this block though its storefront use a concrete stone façade and the window do not show a European style, rather they just add to highlight the building.

This building looks to be restored completely.  One can tell form the brick style and the hue of the building that it was built recently.  Yet it does keep in line with C. Emlen Urban’s style.  It has both a brick façade and shop windows that have wooden stylistic frames that are meant to both be attractive and resemble some European style.

This building is one of a few styles that are implemented in Lancaster that use pure European style to define itself.   This building is has a façade slated with stones and contrite stores front, it appears like its function could be  bank.  The roof also adds to the stylistic, because of the age off the roof the copper has turned green and added a very classical look to the street because of the oxidation of copper.

This building façade reminds one of a very governmental building.  It has both pillars and a poured contrete base.  It also has a bold frame around the windows, which remind one of a very Greek style of architectural.  ALhtough this may not have been built in the time period of the other it does feature a very American governmental building style with its classical architectural.

Harold’s building is both a mix of a very classical style but still a mix of C. Emlen Urban style it combines both arches, classical styles, a stone façade, and finally a brick outline.  This building is truly to culmination of C. Emlen’s work which perfectly combines the art of the classics with the art of the modern American lifestyle of that time period.

Reilly Bros and Raub

February 16, 2012


This building was designed to bring costumers into a shop, but also house offices above to allow for a small business to thrive and bring new business.  The building also stands out aesthetically on the block, this is yet another feature that allows the building to attract new customers and create new business. The arc style used at the bottom of the store right above the display cases is built with a refined stone that resembles both excellence and tradition. One of the most prominent factors of the building is its ability to stand out and have an almost highlighted effect on the block. The highlight effect is demonstrated by the use of bright colored bricks around the building to create a visual that can’t be ignored.


The building is primarily built out of stone on the front side, but structurally the inside was supported by iron. The stone trimming on the front of the building was most likely not an actual support system, but rather the result of aesthetics. The top portion of the building houses slates of windows, which are supported by two beams.  These beams do not act as support, at least the view from the outside of those pillars don’t.  But, behind those pillars is the support system, which would either be iron or wood. Overall the support system is hard to derive from just the picture and a sand-born map would need to be used to determine the exact firmitas and its function within the building.


This building combines both a European aspect and a modern American aspect into a new form of architecture. These types of buildings were built in the 1900s and resembled America’s break from the classic architectural style to define a new American style. Although the American style has changed throughout the years, this still stands today and provides for a very unique perspective within the block. The European style can be seen at the top portion of the building around the roof, which is embedded with stylistic figures. As one moves down the building, the American style starts to manifest itself thus showing the architectural significance.

Sean Cosgriff, Mother Dorothea Tombstone Bio

February 3, 2012

Mother Dorothea was buried with her husband Adam Dorothea.  She was also buried with her two  sisters Margaret Dorwart and Elizabeth Dorwart.  This could tell us that the husbands family was not that wealthy and thus could not afford a separate head stone.  Besides those facts not much else is known about Mother Dorothea, her first name isn’t even on the head stone just.  Also the dates of her birth and death are too weathered to read, but the fashion in which she was  and other members of her family buried tell us that she did not come from wealth, yet her family was able to pull  together enough money to buy a nice head stone.  After further research one of her sons was a private in the military for the Marines.  This evidence backs up my assumption about the status of the family.  Regardless to these facts everything else found was very obscure and couldn’t help explain the life of mother Dorothea any more.

Sources Used

West King Street 2-24

February 3, 2012

2 West Kings Street (From 1929-1912-1891-1886)

-At first this building was a bank that took up the entire building.  Yet, as time progressed from 1886 this bank in this building became less of a bank and a liquor store moved into the back portion.  This building never grew in size and remained consistent through these range of dates.  In 1929 this became a restaurant and bar.  Overall the building never changed in structure and or shape, it remained a brick building through all of these dates with 4 floors and a cinder block backing to the building.

3 West King Street (From 1929-1912-1891-1886)

This building was fairly recent in this plot of dates and originated in 1912 and was built as a lodging/ or a hotel.   In 1929 this building grew rapidly in size, almost tripling itself and became the Stone Furniture Store and Company that stretched the entire block.  It was one of the first buildings to have an elevator placed within it, which was able to go through four stories of the building.

6-8 West King Street (From 1929-1912-1891-1886)

-This building started earlier as a lodge for travelers it also seemed to be one of the first buildings in 1886 to have skylights placed within it.  This building was then used as furniture store and the area grew dramatically so as to house the different types of furniture.   Then during 1891 this buildings became a jewelry store from London and the skylights still remained.  After this transformation this store was then abolished by 1929.

8-10 West King Street (From 1929-1912-1891-1886

In the 1886, this building was home to London jewelry.  After this the building was transformed into a biography theater and expanded by nearly fifty percent to allow more room for the venue. In 1912 this remained the same brick building with five floors.  Then in 1912 this changed to the Lancaster Intelligencer.

12  West King Street (From 1929-1912-1891-1886)

-At first this was also a jewelry store with an affiliation to London.  This was then abolished in 1891 and then in 1912 a larger building was constructed to allow room for a furniture store.  This then became a three-floor furniture store that was mostly brick.

16-18 West King Street (From 1929-1912-1891-1886)

– This building at this address in 1886 was very hard to read but it existed but covered a very small area compared to the other buildings around it.  After this building a bakery moved into this zone and the building grew by about 40 percent in 1891.   This then grew again by 50 percent and became a piano and organ store.  This remained the same in 1929 and became brick covered 5-story building.

22-20 West King Street (From 1929-1912-1891-1886)

-This address started out as a brewery as the year progressed it slowly became a drug store in 1891.  After this transformation the building remained the same.  Then in 1929 the building grew to four stories gained an addition to the back of the building.  In 1929 the building also gained a iron clade frame, while a warehouse was built behind it for iron.

24 West King Street (From 1929-1912-1891-1886)

-At this address a building was constructed, yet in 1886 it remained unused.  This held true until 1891 when it became a music repair shop, but then in 1912 this building remained unused.  Then in 1929 it remained unnamed on the master chart but skylights were added and the building was expanded by fifty percent and soon stretch the length of the entire block.