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McEnary, Krafft, Birch & Kilgore papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: N18

Scope and Content Note

The collection contains the plans—both original and prints—of many of their buildings, including Alpha Rho Chi fraternity house, University of Minnesota (1925); the H.B. Craddick residence, Minneapolis (1923); and the C.F. Haglin residence, Minneapolis (1923), all designed by Frederick Mann, who was the chief designer in the firm and the first director of the School of Architecture at the University of Minnesota. There are also plans for the Kedney Warehouse Company Service Building, Minneapolis (1926–07); Miller Cafeteria, Minneapolis (1929); Oneida Holding Company building, Minneapolis (1932); and the Farmers and Mechanics Savings Bank, Minneapolis (1940–41).

In addition, there are plans for designs by other local architects in the collection, including the Cream of Wheat building, Minneapolis (1924), by Walter Wheeler; the Minneapolis Gas Light Company building, Minneapolis (1911), by Long, Lamoureaux & Long; the William Dunwoody residence (1905) by William Channing Whitney; Lakewood Cemetery Chapel (1908) by Harry Jones; the Charles Leigh residence (1917 & 1930) by Bertrand & Chamberlain; and Plymouth Congregational Church (1907-08) by Shepley, Rutan & Coolidge, all in Minneapolis. The papers also contain office correspondence, specifications, and photographs for many structures, including construction photographs of the Farmers and Mechanics Savings Bank.


  • 1905-1980


Language of Materials


Restrictions on Access

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

Restrictions on Use

Please check with the Archivist regarding copyright of these materials.

Biographical & Historical Notes

Dale McEnarywas born in Minneapolis on July 13, 1890. He attended the public schools of that city and studied engineering and architecture at the University of Minnesota and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, respectively, graduating from the latter in 1914 with a B.S. in architecture. He worked for Charles Frost in his St. Paul and Chicago offices from 1914 to 1917, served in the U.S. Army from 1917 to 1919, then returned to Frost's office from 1919 to 1921. In the latter year, McEnary joined Frederick Mann's office in Minneapolis until 1925, when he associated with Walter Wheeler, an engineer. In 1928, he formed a partnership with Albert Larson, who left the firm in 1934 and was replaced by Edwin Krafft. McEnary died in Minneapolis in 1964.

 Edwin Krafftwas born in Minneapolis on September 26, 1901. He attended Dartmouth College and studied architecture at the University of Minnesota, graduating in 1924. He worked for a series of local architects, including Magney & Tusler (1926–1931), before joining McEnary in partnership in 1934. Krafft retired from active practice in 1969 and died in Minneapolis in 1986.

 Merrill Birchwas born in Minneapolis on April 17, 1919. He earned an architecture degree from the University of Minnesota in 1942. He joined the navy for four years, returning after war service to become a member of the firm and, in 1963, a full partner.

 Robert Kilgorewas born in 1928 and also attended the University of Minnesota School of Architecture, graduating in 1949. He joined the firm as a draftsman and was likewise elected partner in 1963.

Dale McEnary and Edwin Krafft formed their partnership in 1934 to design a large country house at Lake Minnetonka for Rufus Rand. This house today is the corporate headquarters of Cargill, Inc. Their pre-World War II practice continued to concentrate on prestigious residences and culminated in 1941 with the design of the modern Farmers and Mechanics Savings Bank in Minneapolis. After the war, the firm diversified into all types of architecture, concentrating on the design of traditional churches but also encompassing factories, retail stores, warehouses, apartment buildings, parking ramps, theaters, and schools.


271.5 Cubic Feet


The collection contains the plans for many of the firm’s buildings, including the Kedney Warehouse Service Building, Miller Cafeteria and the F&M Savings Bank building. There are also plans by other architects: Alpha Rho Chi fraternity house (University of Minnesota, 1925) and the Craddick and Haglin residences (1923), all designed by Frederick Mann, who was chief designer at the firm. Walter Wheeler’s plans for the Cream of Wheat building, W. C. Whitney’s Dunwoody residence, the Lakewood Cemetery Chapel by Harry Jones, and other plans are included. The papers also contain correspondence, specifications, and some photographs.


The collection is organized in six groups of materials:

  1. Working Drawings
  2. Job Files
  3. Photographs
  4. Renderings
  5. Sketches
  6. Specifications

Physical Location

Mezzanine and High Bay


Donated by Merrill Birch in 1973.

Related Material

See also the Walter H. Wheeler Papers, the William Channing Whitney Papers, the C.F. Haglin Company Papers, and the Long & Kees Papers.

McEnary, Krafft, Birch & Kilgore Papers
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Collecting Area Details

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