Reid & Reid, also known as Reid Brothers, was an American architectural and engineering firm that was active from 1880 to 1932.[1] Established in Indiana by Canadian immigrants, the firm moved to the West Coast and became was the most prominent firm in San Francisco, California in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.[2][1]

Reid & Reid
Hotel del Coronado in San Diego, California
Practice information
PartnersWatson Elkinah Reid
William Sterling Hebbard
FoundersJames W. Reid
Merritt J. Reid
LocationSan Francisco
San Diego
Evansville, Indiana
AffiliationsReid Brothers
Significant works and honors
BuildingsWillard Library
Hotel del Coronado
The Call Building
Fairmont San Francisco
Cliff House
Willard Library
St. Pauls Episcopal Church
The Oregonian Building
Grein Building circa1895
Call building before 1938 redesign
Grand Lake Theater

History edit

Brothers James William Reid (1851-1943), Merritt Jonathan Reid (1855-1932), and Watson Elkinah Reid (1858–1944) were born in Harvey, Albert County, New Brunswick, Canada, three of the eight children of Lucinda Robinson and William James Reid, a farmer and house joiner.[3][4][5] James worked as a house joiner and studied industrial arts at the Lowell School of Practical Design in Boston before attending McGill University in Montreal and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.[5] He also studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris 1874.[5]

before graduating from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and École des Beaux-Arts in Paris.[6][7] Merritt also graduated from École des Beaux-Arts.,

In the late 19th–century, James and Merritt immigrated to Evansville, Indiana from and worked at the architectural firm of Boy and Brickley.[2][6] In 1879, they purchased the contracts from Boyd & Brickley and opened Reid Brothers.[2]

One of their early clients was the Terre Haute Railroad which helped develop their reputation.[6] Their most notable work in Evansville is the Willard Library which was executed in the Gothic revival style.[2][6] Banker Aaron Guard Cloud commissioned two projects with the Reid Brothers: the Cloud State Bank in the Second Empire and French Baroque style and his private home which are both in McLeansboro, Illinois.[6]

In 1886, the brothers moved to the San Diego, California with the client Charles T. Hinde to design the Hotel Del Coronado for the Coronado Beach Company.[6] Although the Coronado Beach Company was not financially successful, the project helped build the West Coast reputation of the Reid Brothers.[6] Their younger brother, Watson Elkinah Reid moved to California and joined the firm around 1888.[2] Watson attended Mount Allison University in Sackville, New Brunswick, Canada and worked as a house joiner.[4] He served as the supervising architect for the Hotel Del Coronado.[8]

James and Merritt became Fellows of the American Institute of Architects in 1889.[6] That same year, Merritt moved to San Francisco to open an office, followed shortly by James.[6] Watson remained in San Diego to run that office.[6][8] In 1891, Watson was joined by William Sterling Hebbard, an architect who had trained in Chicago.[6]

In 1892, the Reid Brothers were hired to design the Portland, Oregon newspaper's Oregonian Building. It was the first steel-frame building west of Chicago.[6]

In 1894, Mrs. M. L. Selfridge hired the firm to design six houses on the corner of California and Pierce in San Francisco.[6]

Newspaperman Claus Spreckels hired them to design a headquarters for The San Francisco Call in 1895.[6] Architect Charles William Dickey joined the firm's San Francisco office from 1895 to 1896.[9] He was from Oakland but had attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.[9] They also hired draftsman John Walter Dolliver as a designer; draftsman Emile Schroeder Lemme, and architect Albert L. Farr.[10][11][12]

Completed in 1897, the Call Building was the tallest building west of Chicago at 315 feet.[6] The top of the Call Building was a four-story dome; there, the Reid Brothers established their new office on the eighteenth floor.[6] The Call Building dominated the San Francisco skyline and became its "most recognizable" landmark.[6] Spreckels continued to work with Reid & Reid for other projects including the Spreckels Car House, several family mansions, and Spreckels Temple of Music, a music stand that Spreckels donated to Golden Gate Park.[6][13]

In 1892, Watson Reid left the firm and moved back to New Brunswick. Watson Reid was commissioned to build what's known as Victoria Manor, completed in 1893 for Lt. Gov. Abner Reid McClellan. [6] Hebbard then became head of the San Diego office and oversaw its work.[6]

In addition to the Spreckels Temple of Music, Reid & Reid designed the Caretaker's Cottage at Golden Gate Park.[2][13] In 1908, they also designed a Stadium at the Polo Fields for Golden Gate Park, but the project ended early in the construction phase.[2] Only a small section of the bleachers was constructed.[2]

Reid & Reid was hired to design the Fairmont Hotel on Nob Hill in 1902.[6] Although damaged by the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, the hotel opened a year later, on April 18, 1907.[6] They also designed the First Congregational Church, the W. & J. Sloane Building, and two Hale Brothers Co. department stores.[6] They also created the third version of Cliff House.[6]

They also designed many mansions in the Pacific Heights, although many were lost in the 1906 San Francisco earthquake and fire.[6] Two surviving houses located at 2083 and 2099 Pacific were built for Spreckels as wedding gifts for his son.[6] Those survive today, along with 1919 Sacramento, 2770 Broadway, and 2646 Vallejo.[6] Another residential project was the Classical Revival Irwin mansion which was located at 2190 Washington.[6]

Reid & Reid designed numerous movie theaters in San Francisco, including the Alexandria Theatre, the Balboa Theatre, the Coliseum Theatre, the Metropolitan, and the New Mission Theatre.[2][14][6] They also designed the Golden State Theatre in Monterey, the Grand Lake Theater in Oakland, the New Sequoia Theater Building in Redwood City, and Sequoia Theatre in Mill Valley, California[15][16][17][18]

In 1929, they designed a 20-unit cooperative apartment building in Russian Hill.[6] James moved into the apartment building, living there until he died in 1943.[6]

When Merritt died on February 4, 1932, James retired and closed the firm.[6]

Selected works edit

Building Date Place Reference
Willard Library 1877 Evansville, Indiana [19]
Cloud State Bank 1880 McLeansboro, Illinois [6]
Aaron G. Cloud house 1884 McLeansboro, Illinois [6]
St. Paul's Episcopal Church 1886 Evansville, Indiana
Hotel del Coronado 1888 San Diego, California [19]
Grein Building 1889 Evansville, Indiana [19]
Germond Block 1890 Spokane, Washington
Oregonian Building 1892 Portland, Oregon [19][20]
Selfridge houses, 2603 through 2611 California 1894 San Francisco, California [6]
Residence, 1919 Sacramento 1895 Pacific Heights, San Francisco, California [6]
The Call Building (now Central Tower) 1898 San Francisco, California [19]
Spreckels Car House (aka. Geneva Car Barn), 2301 San Jose 1899 San Francisco, California [6]
Spreckels Temple of Music, Golden Gate Park 1900 San Francisco, California [13]
Irwin Mansion, 2190 Washington 1901 San Francisco, California [6]
Hale Brothers Department Store, 989 Market 1902 San Francisco, California [6]
Residence, 2770 Broadway 1904 Pacific Heights, San Francisco, California [6]
Spreckels Mansion, 2083 Pacific 1904 Pacific Heights, San Francisco, California [6]
Spreckels Mansion, 2099 Pacific 1905 Pacific Heights, San Francisco, California [6]
Fairmont San Francisco 1907 San Francisco, California [19]
Merritt Building 1907 San Francisco, California
1 Sixth Street 1908 San Francisco, California [19]
Garfield Building, 938–942 Market Street 1908 San Francisco, California [21]
W. & J. Sloane Furniture Building, 222 Sutter 1908 San Francisco, California [6]
222 Sutter Street 1909 San Francisco, California [19]
Marshall Hale House, 26 Presidio Terrace 1909 San Francisco, California [2]
Cliff House 1909 San Francisco, California
Yeon Building 1911 Portland, Oregon [19]
Hale Brothers Department Store expansion, 901 Market 1912 San Francisco, California [19][6]
The Oregon Journal Building (now Jackson Tower) 1912 Portland, Oregon [19]
First Congregational Church 1913 San Francisco, California [2]
1915 Merritt Building 1915 Los Angeles, California [19]
New Mission Theater 1916 San Francisco, California [14]
Residence, 2646 Vallejo 1917 Pacific Heights, San Francisco, California [6]
The Coliseum Theatre, 745 Clement 1918 San Francisco, California [6][2]
Sweasey Theatre (now Arkley Center for the Performing Arts) 1920 Eureka, California [22]
United Building 1920 Los Angeles, California [19]
Orpheus Theatre 1920 San Rafael, California [23]
Grand Rapids Hotel 1922 Wabash County, Illinois
Alexandria Theatre, 5400 Geary 1923 San Francisco, California [6][2]
Fitzhugh Building 1923 San Francisco, California [24]
Metropolitan Theatre, 2055 Union 1924 San Francisco, California [6]
Roosevelt Theatre (now Brava Women's Theater Arts) 1924 San Francisco, California [25]
Balboa Theatre, 3630 Balboa 1926 San Francisco, California [26][6]
Golden State Theatre 1926 Monterey, California [19][18]
Grand Lake Theater 1926 Oakland, California [17]
Sequoia Theatre 1929 Mill Valley, California [15]
New Sequoia Theater Building 1929 Redwood City, California [16]
La Miranda Apartments, 1100 Union 1929 Russian Hill, San Francisco, California [19]
State Theater 1931 San Francisco, California
Sebastiani Theatre 1934 Sonoma, California [27]

References edit

  1. ^ a b Michelson, Alan. "Reid Brothers, Architects". Pacific Coast Architecture Database. University of Washington. Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m Western Neighborhoods Project. "The Reid Brothers". Outside Lands. Retrieved 2022-02-19.
  3. ^ Michelson, Alan. "Merritt Jonathan Reid". Pacific Coast Architecture Database. University of Washington. Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  4. ^ a b Michelson, Alan. "Watson Elkinah Reid". Pacific Coast Architecture Database. University of Washington. Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  5. ^ a b c Michelson, Alan. "James William Reid". Pacific Coast Architecture Database. University of Washington. Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am an ao ap aq ar as at au av aw Parry, Dave (2010-11-08). "Architects' Profiles: Pacific Heights Architects #31 - Reid Brothers". McGuire Real Estate. Way Back Machine. Archived from the original on November 8, 2010. Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  7. ^ "PCAD - James William Reid". Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  8. ^ a b "Reid, Watson Elkinah | Biographical Dictionary of Architects in Canada". Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  9. ^ a b Michelson, Alan. "Charles William Dickey". Pacific Coast Architecture Database. University of Washington. Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  10. ^ Michelson, Alan. "John Walter Dolliver Sr". Pacific Coast Architecture Database. University of Washington. Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  11. ^ Michelson, Alan. "Albert Lincoln Farr". Pacific Coast Architecture Database. University of Washington. Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  12. ^ Michelson, Alan. "Emile Schroeder Lemme". Pacific Coast Architecture Database. University of Washington. Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  13. ^ a b c "Speckes' Gift To The Park". The San Francisco Examiner. San Francisco, California. 25 Feb 1899. p. 7. Retrieved 2022-01-14.
  14. ^ a b Melnick, Ross; Haas, Howard B. "Alamo Drafthouse New Mission Cinema in San Francisco, CA - Cinema Treasures". Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  15. ^ a b "CineArts Sequoia in Mill Valley, CA - Cinema Treasures". Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  16. ^ a b "Fox Theatre in Redwood City, CA - Cinema Treasures". Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  17. ^ a b "Grand Lake Theatre in Oakland, CA - Cinema Treasures". Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  18. ^ a b "Golden State Theatre in Monterey, CA - Cinema Treasures". Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  19. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o "Reid & Reid". Emporis. Archived from the original on February 20, 2015. Retrieved July 24, 2022.
  20. ^ Demolished in 1950
  21. ^ "San Francisco Landmark 244: Garfield Building". Retrieved 2024-01-20.
  22. ^ Melnick, Ross. "Arkley Center for the Performing Arts in Eureka, CA - Cinema Treasures". Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  23. ^ "Rafael Film Center in San Rafael, CA - Cinema Treasures". Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  24. ^ Demolished
  25. ^ "Brava Women's Theater Arts in San Francisco, CA - Cinema Treasures". Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  26. ^ "Balboa Theatre in San Francisco, CA - Cinema Treasures". Retrieved 2022-07-24.
  27. ^ "Sebastiani Theatre in Sonoma, CA - Cinema Treasures". Retrieved 2022-07-24.

Further reading edit

  • Cynthia Barwick Malinick, "The Lives and Works of the Reid Brothers, Architects 1852-1943". (M.A. thesis, University of San Diego, 1992)