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Cass Gilbert collection

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: N15

Scope and Content Note

The collection consists of two studies of the campus plan of the University of Minnesota (1906). They include two elevations executed in pencil, watercolor, and pen and ink. One is framed and measures 29" x 84", the other in unframed, executed in the same media and measures 41" x 98".

Also included in the collection are plans for the Roselawn Cemetery (St. Paul, MN) administration and mortuary buildings, and additions and alterations to the Roselawn Cemetery Chapel and catacombs building.


  • 1889-1922


Language of Materials


Restrictions on Access

Available for use in the reading room. Advance notice is requested.

Restrictions on Use

There are no restrictions on the use of materials in this collection. Copies can be requested if the condition of the originals warrants it.

Biograpical Note

Cass Gilbert was born in Zanesville, Ohio on November 24, 1859. He moved with his family to St. Paul in 1868 and attended Macalester College when it was a prep school and then the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In 1880, he joined the prestigious New York firm of McKim, Mead & White, leaving there in 1882 to return to St. Paul as their western representative. He began a partnership with James Knox Taylor in 1885, whom he had known at school in St. Paul and at MIT.

James Knox Taylor was born in Knoxville, Illinois in 1857. He was educated in the public schools of St. Paul and studied at MIT (1877-1879). He then worked in New York City before joining Gilbert in partnership in 1885. In 1892, he moved to Philadelphia and two years later went to work in the Office of the Supervising Architect of the Treasury in Washington, DC as a draftsman. He was appointed Supervising Architect in 1898 and remained in that position until 1912. Taylor spent two years as director of the department of architecture at MIT and then moved to Yonkers, NY, where he practiced for several years before retiring to Tampa, FL in 1928. He died there on August 27, 1929.

The Gilbert and Taylor partnership (1885-1891) was highly successful, producing many residences and other buildings in St. Paul and elsewhere. Among these were the Northern Pacific Depot (Little Falls, MN) (1889); Dayton Avenue Presbyterian Church (St. Paul) (1885-1886); the Board of Trade Building (Duluth, MN) (1885); and the Endicott Building (St. Paul) (1889-1890).

When the partnership dissolved in 1891, Gilbert continued to maintain a private practice in St. Paul until moving to New York City around 1901. The most outstanding commission during those years was the Minnesota State Capitol, St. Paul (1895-1905). He had a very distinguished career in New York, designing such buildings as the Palace of Fine Arts at the Louisiana Purchase Exposition (St. Louis) (1903-1904); the University of Minnesota campus plan (1906); the Woolworth Building (1911-1913); the Detroit Public Library (1913-1921); the Federal Reserve Bank (Minneapolis) (1923-1925); the West Virginia State Capitol (Wheeling) (1924-1932); the U.S. Supreme Court Building (1928-1935); the New York Life Insurance Co. building (New York) (1929); and many others. Cass Gilbert died on May 17, 1934.


8 Cubic Feet


Collection contains studies of the University of Minnesota campus plans and plans for the Roselawn Cemetery.


The collection is organized by project.

Related Materials in the Northwest Architectural Archives

A set of blueprints for the Federal Reserve Bank (Minneapolis), including elevations, floor plans, and details, (125 sheets total) is in the Larson & McLaren papers (N 69).

A complete set of plans for the Endicott Building (St. Paul), including elevations, floor plans and details, (110 sheets, hectographs and blueprints) is in the Pioneer and Endicott Building plans (N 77 A).

McEnary, Krafft, Birch & Kilgore papers (N 18)

Other Related Materials

Cass Gilbert campus plans. University of Minnesota Archives

Cass Gilbert papers. Minnesota Historical Society. Division of Library and Archives

Cass Gilbert collection. New-York Historical Society. Print Room

Cass Gilbert papers. Montana Historical Society. Library and Archives Department

Cass Gilbert collection. Smithsonian Institution. National Museum of American History, Archives Center

Cass Gilbert papers. Mattatuck Historical Society. Mattatuck Museum

Cass Gilbert papers. Library of Congress. Manuscript Division

Cass Gilbert Collection
Archives Staff
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Collecting Area Details

Contact The Northwest Architectural Archives Collecting Area