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Finding Aid for the Irving John Gill papers, 1870-1936 0000105
0000105  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Access
  • Custodial History note
  • Preferred Citation note
  • Biographical/Historical note
  • Scope and Content note
  • Related Archival Materials note
  • Project Index

  • Title: Irving John Gill papers
    Identifier/Call Number: 0000105
    Contributing Institution: Architecture and Design Collection, Art, Design & Architecture Museum
    Language of Material: English
    Physical Description: 21.0 Linear feet (3 boxes and 6 flat file drawers)
    Date (inclusive): 1870-1936
    creator: Gill, Irving, 1870-1936 -- Archives

    Access

    Open for use by qualified researchers.

    Custodial History note

    Gift of Louis J. Gill, 1968. Additional material gifted from Mr. Joseph Musil, 1979 and Laureen Bricke, 1999.

    Preferred Citation note

    Irving John Gill papers, Architecture and Design Collection. Art, Design & Architecture Museum; University of California, Santa Barbara.

    Biographical/Historical note

    Born near Syracuse, New York, Irving Gill (1870-1936) was descended from Quakers and grew up in a family with ties to the building trades. Gill never attended architecture school but apprenticed with the architect Ellis K. Hall in Syracuse and, based on Hall’s recommendation, moved to Chicago in 1890 to work for Joseph L. Silsbee. By 1891, Gill was working in the office of Dankmar Adler and Louis Sullivan, at the same time as Frank Lloyd Wright. Gill may have worked on Sullivan’s Transportation Building for the World’s Columbian Exposition of 1893. This early modern design was one of the few buildings not in the classical style for which the fair became known. The “Chicago School” and Louis Sullivan in particular had a lasting effect on Gill’s architectural thinking. Because of ill health, Gill moved to San Diego in 1893. There he developed partnerships with Joseph Falkenham, then with William Sterling Hebbard, before establishing his own office. By 1907, simple, stripped-down modern forms and surfaces defined his design vocabulary. He published several essays during his lifetime, in which he argued for a simple and authentic architecture, famously writing, “[a]ny deviation from simplicity results in a loss of dignity.” Many of his projects show his social concerns, including his houses for working men and single women, and his designs for the Rancho Barona Indian reservation.

    Scope and Content note

    The Irving J. Gill papers comprise 21 linear feet and date from 1870 to 1936. The collection contains correspondence, daily diaries, photographs, clippings and printed ephemera regarding several of his San Diego projects.

    Related Archival Materials note

    David Gebhard papers, Architecture and Design Collection. Art, Design & Architecture Museum; University of California, Santa Barbara.
    Louis J. Gill papers, Architecture and Design Collection. Art, Design & Architecture Museum; University of California, Santa Barbara.
    Historic American Building Survey records, Architecture and Design Collection. Art, Design & Architecture Museum; University of California, Santa Barbara.

    Project Index

    The Irving John Gill Project Index provides a list of the design projects that can be found in the Irving Gill papers. The Project Index notes the existence of drawings and presentation boards and should be used in conjuntion with the finding aid. Click the following link to view: http://adc.museum.ucsb.edu/Project_Index/105_GillIrving_ProjectIndex.xlsx 

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Gill, Louis J., 1885-1969
    Architects -- California
    Architectural drawings
    Architectural photographs
    Architecture -- California
    Architecture -- California -- 20th century
    Architecture -- California -- Los Angeles -- 20th Century
    Architecture, Modern -- 20th century -- California
    Blueprints
    Irving John Gill Collection
    Negatives
    Photographic prints
    Sketches
    University of California, Santa Barbara -- Buildings -- Pictorial works