Who built Boys' High School, Philadelphia

KorbenDallas

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#1
They used to build some beautiful schools for boys in Philadelphia. Apparently it got torn down at some point.

Central High School (Philadelphia): In September 1900, the school moved to its third location in a newer and larger building located at Broad, Green, Fifteenth, and Brandywine Streets. In 1939, Central moved from its location at Broad and Green to its fourth, current, location at Ogontz and Olney Avenues. The building left behind became the Benjamin Franklin High School. And this BF High School of today is.... well it's ugly - New Looks.

Anything interesting you see?

Clickable: 2800 x 2239 px
1904 Boys' High School, Philadelphia.jpg

Additional questions:
  • When was this building built?
  • Who built it?
  • When was it demolished, and why?
 
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KorbenDallas

KorbenDallas

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#3
1894 according to the date stone on the corner.
Yup, but for a building like this it’s very strange not to have any additional info. Is 1894 a date of renovation, construction or something else.

The architect’s name would be nice to know, or any info in general.
 

ISeenItFirst

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#5
Yup, but for a building like this it’s very strange not to have any additional info. Is 1894 a date of renovation, construction or something else.

The architect’s name would be nice to know, or any info in general.
It is common to put a date stone for a building. It is sometimes year competed, but usually year started (If finished in a different year from start). It is not common practice to do this for a renovation, but I certainly wouldn't say that it has never been done.

I mostly see them on cornerstones, keystones, and foundation caps near an entrance. Changing out a stone in these locations is difficult to our it lightly.

Of course this one isn't carved in, so those numbers could have been added later, or could even be an address or some other purpose.
 

whitewave

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#6
Are there any electrical wires running to it? I traced the wires from the electric poles as best as I could but they don't seem to run to this magnificent building.
 

ISeenItFirst

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#7
Are there any electrical wires running to it? I traced the wires from the electric poles as best as I could but they don't seem to run to this magnificent building.
There is a wire front and center that attached to the building. It comes from right in front of the tree branch.

Doesn't really look electric though, and looks to go up at a fairly steep angle (could be perspective, I suppose). You can see something holding it on the building between those 2 windows. Wonder what that is. If it is electric, it is dangerous for a lot of reasons.
 

whitewave

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#8
If we're looking at the same wire, I thought that went to the flagpole and was some sort of support. And would one wire be enough for a building that large?
 

ISeenItFirst

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#9
If we're looking at the same wire, I thought that went to the flagpole and was some sort of support. And would one wire be enough for a building that large?
Yeah, back then it probably would be. Well, it still would be, it would just be a much bigger wire today. (Two actually)

I don't think it goes to the flagpole. I can't tell what its for. Maybe the window is an office and the resident puts his wet clothes on the line. Who knows.

Maybe some kind of radioa antenna?

Looking again, what is up with the other lines in the sky? On the left, some are chopped off and just hanging in space, and there is one on the right as well.
 
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KorbenDallas

KorbenDallas

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#10
It is common to put a date stone for a building. It is sometimes year competed, but usually year started (If finished in a different year from start). It is not common practice to do this for a renovation, but I certainly wouldn't say that it has never been done. I mostly see them on cornerstones, keystones, and foundation caps near an entrance. Changing out a stone in these locations is difficult to our it lightly. Of course this one isn't carved in, so those numbers could have been added later, or could even be an address or some other purpose.
elmer_fisher.jpg

Elmer Fisher | Changing Vancouver

They do play with these numbers now and then. Obviously not by much in this case, but I only trust them somuch.
 
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#11
They used to build some beautiful schools for boys in Philadelphia. Apparently it got torn down at some point.

Central High School (Philadelphia): In September 1900, the school moved to its third location in a newer and larger building located at Broad, Green, Fifteenth, and Brandywine Streets. In 1939, Central moved from its location at Broad and Green to its fourth, current, location at Ogontz and Olney Avenues. The building left behind became the Benjamin Franklin High School. And this BF High School of today is.... well it's ugly - New Looks.

Anything interesting you see?
Yes. What are those metal things on top of the domes? Wish we had better photos of those.
 

trismegistus

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#12
Those domes don't look decorative - - they look utilitarian. It seems extra-obvious compared to the exquisite design of the building itself, which almost looks like a church.

Also, the use of gargoyles on the tower is curious - - I know Gothic revival is a thing but it does seem a bit out of place for the 1900s.
 
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