23 Examples Of Lost American Architecture

Pullman Arcade Building – Chicago, Illinois

Built in 1882, demolished in 1926.

Rose Terrace – Grosse Pointe, Michigan

The former home of Anna Thompson Dodge was built in 1930, and despite it being a historic site, it was demolished in 1976 to make way for a housing development.

Olympia Theatre – New York City, New York

Famous for its rooftop garden “Cherry Blossom Grove”, it was constructed in 1895. In 1935, the site was razed and rebuilt into the International Casino nightclub, retail space, and a new Criterion Theatre.

Pierce County Courthouse – Tacoma, Washington

Built in 1893, demolished in 1959.

Trinity College – Toronto, Ontario

The building opened to students in 1852 and was expanded several times until it was abandoned in 1925. A fire severely damaged it in 1929, leading to its demolition in 1956.

Calvary Baptist Church – New York City, New York

A rare example of a “skyscraper church”, it was demolished in 2020.

Peavey Grand Opera House – Sioux City, Iowa

Doors opened in 1888, but in 1931 the building was destroyed in a fire.

The Key Route Inn – Oakland, California

The hotel was built in 1907, and burned down in 1932.

Majestic Building – Detroit, Michigan

Built in 1896, it was razed in 1962 to make way for the First Federal Building.

Point Bridge – Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

The original bridge was constructed in 1877, but it was costly to maintain due to unstable foundations. In 1925, it was replaced by a larger bridge.

San Jose City Hall – San Jose, California

Built in 1889, demolished in 1958.

Vancouver Art Gallery – Vancouver, British Columbia

The museum opened in 1931. In 1983, it was relocated to the city’s former courthouse and the original building was later demolished.

South Central High School – Spokane, Washington

Built in 1908, the school was lost in a fire only two years later in 1910.

Garrick Theater – Chicago, Illinois

It opened as the Schiller Theater in 1891 and was one of the tallest buildings in Chicago up until its demolition in 1961.

Horticultural Hall – Boston, Massachusetts

Built in 1865, the top floor was a grand exhibition hall with 27′ ceilings. It was demolished in 1901.

The Gardo House – Salt Lake City, Utah

Built in 1883, demolished in 1921.

Trump Plaza – Atlantic City, New Jersey

Constructed in 1984, the building stood unused since its 2014 closure and was demolished in 2021.

Keōua Hale – Honolulu, Hawaii

Princess Ruth Keelikolani never lived in her palace as she grew ill and passed away shortly after its completion in 1883. In 1925, it was demolished due to termite infestation.

University of Toronto Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering Building – Toronto, Ontario

This building was used by the university from 1898 until it was outgrown in 1947. It was later demolished in 1966.

Illinois Theatre – Chicago, Illinois One of the city’s most prestigious theatres, it opened in 1900.

After closing during the depression, it never reopened and was demolished in 1932.

Allentown State Hospital – Allentown, Pennsylvania

Multiple attempts were made to purchase and restore the property that was built in 1912, but in 2020 the city moved forward with demolition.

Unity Building – Chicago, Illinois

Built in 1892, demolished in 1989.

Detroit Museum of Arts – Detroit, Michigan

Built in 1888, the museum operated here until 1927. It was then used as government offices until it was razed to make room for the Chrysler Freeway in 1960.

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