May 12, 2013

10 Buildings That Changed America

If you’ve read this blog for more than a week, then you know I am fascinated with architecture. So this new PBS offering “10 Buildings That Changed America” has me intrigued. Luckily, PBS sent me a preview copy, and I can highly recommend it.

Some of the buildings they’ve chosen are surprising, and might not be the ones I’d have chosen. First up is the Thomas Jefferson-designed capitol building in Richmond, Virginia. imageThis wasn’t an obvious choice. That would have been either Monticello or the University of Virginia’s main campus. The building was modeled on a classical temple and was a huge departure from English architecture of the day.

Another surprising pick was the Ford Plant, now derelict, in Highland Park, Michigan. The space had to have the room for an assembly line,


and this Albert Kahn-designed building, filled with light and air, was the model for thousands of other buildings just like it. I am sure you’ve seen one or two.

Of course, there had to be a Frank Lloyd Wright house on this list, and the one they chose was the Robie house outside of Chicago. imageThe flat roof and long low look was a huge departure from the Victorian houses of the period.

To see the rest of the buildings, or to watch the show, check your local PBS listings.


  1. Thank you for the info Meg; this film sounds very interesting!

    Art by Karena

  2. I have just ggogled each of these buildings well the first two, and I am puzzled is it the design or what happened in the buildings?? in concert with the look, the design was one of form and function The Ford plant where the Model T rolled off the production line the birthof horizontal integration, economies of scale price points supply and demand laws etc.

  3. I happened to catch the show the other night and I really enjoyed it. I missed the first five minutes so I set it up to record later that night and I ended up watching the whole thing again.

  4. The Robie House is in Chicago, not outside it.


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