Mr. George Browne Post was our architect who won the contest to design Weylin back in 1870, when it was built to open and work as The Williamsburg Savings Bank, making Williamsburg become a classic and strong neighborhood, right next to where the bridge would be planned and built; and also very close to one of the oldest ferry stations. We could say that the good old bank was a key influence to the bridge’s planning and location!
George was born on December 15, 1837 in Manhattan, New York to Joel Browne Post and Abby Mauran Church.
He graduated from New York University in 1858 with a degree in civil engineering. He then became a student of Richard Morris Hunt from 1858 to 1860. He formed a partnership with a fellow-student in Hunt’s office, Charles D. Gambrill, with a brief hiatus for service in the Civil War. He married Alice Matilda Stone (1840-1909) on October 14, 1863. They had five children: George Browne, Jr., William Stone, Allison Wright, James Otis and Alice Winifred.
Among his historic legacy are the New York Stock Exchange building, the Bronx Borough Hall and the Wisconsin State Capitol.
The prominent private houses by Post were the French chateau for Cornelius Vanderbilt II (1879–82) that once stood at Fifth Avenue and 57th Street (that was photographed by Albert Levy while being built), and the palazzo that faced it across the street, for Collis P. Huntington (1889–94). In Newport, Rhode Island he built for the president of the Louisville and Nashville Railroad, C.C. Baldwin, “Chateau-Nooga” or the Baldwin Cottage (1879–80), a polychromatic exercise in the “Quaint Style” with bargeboards and half-timbering; John La Farge provided stained glass panels.
He trained architect Arthur Bates Jennings.
A true member of the American Renaissance, Post engaged notable artists and artisans to add decorative sculpture and murals to his architectural designs. Among those who worked with Post were the sculptor Karl Bitter and painter Elihu Vedder. Post was a founding member of the National Arts Club, serving as president from 1898 to 1905. In 1905, his two sons were taken into the partnership, and they continued to lead the firm after Post’s death, notably as the designers of many Statler Hotels in cities across the United States. Thereafter, the firm carried on under the stewardship of Post’s grandson, Edward Everett Post (1904–2006) until the late twentieth century.
Post served as sixth president of the American Institute of Architects, 1896-99, and he received the AIA Gold Medal in 1911. His extensive archive is in the collection at the New-York Historical Society.
Sarah Bradford Landau‘s publication George B. Post, Architect: Picturesque Designer and Determined Realist (1998) inspired a retrospective exhibition in 1998–99 to revisit Post’s work at the Society. In 2014, curator, architect George Ranalli presented an exhibition of Post’s drawings and photographs of the design of the City College of New York‘s main campus buildings, on loan from the New York Historical Society.
We are so proud of keeping his work alive and full of energy.
Thank you George!!!
The Weylin Team