Records of Alfred C. Williams, 1926-1991, (bulk 1926-1948)

Sarah Herr
Environmental Design Archives
College of Environmental Design
230 Wurster Hall #1820
University of California, Berkeley
Berkeley, California, 94720-1820
Phone: (510) 642-5124
Fax: (510) 642-2824
Email: designarchives@berkeley.edu
http://www.ced.berkeley.edu/cedarchives/
© 2010
The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

Records of Alfred C. Williams, 1926-1991, (bulk 1926-1948)

Collection number: 2006-10

Environmental Design Archives

University of California, Berkeley

Berkeley, California
Processed by:
Sarah Herr
Date Completed:
October 2006
Encoded by:
Devan McGirr
© 2010 The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

Title: Alfred C. Williams records
Dates: 1926-1991
Dates: (1926-1948)
Collection number: 2006-10
Creator: Williams, Alfred C., 1906-2006
Collector: Environmental Design Archives
Collection Size: 2 boxes, 8 flat files, 3 flat boxes, 1 tube
Repository: Environmental Design Archives

College of Environmental Design
University of California, Berkeley
Berkeley, California
Physical location: Environmental Design Archives

University of California, Berkeley

Berkeley, California 94720-1820
Languages: Languages represented in the collection: English

Access

Collection is open for research.

Publication Rights

All requests for permission to publish, reproduce, or quote from materials in the collection should be discussed with the Curator.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of Item], Records of Alfred C. Williams, 2006-10, Environmental Design Archives. College of Environmental Design. University of California, Berkeley.

Acquisition Information

Acquired from family.

Biographical Note

Alfred C. Williams, 1906-2006
Alfred Charles Williams was born on June 25, 1906 in San Francisco, California, shortly after the 1906 earthquake destroyed his parents' home. He attended Mission High School in San Francisco, where he ran track and was editor of the student paper. He then earned a B.A. in 1928 and an M.A. in 1932 from the University of California, Berkeley School of Architecture. He worked as a draftsman for Archie T. Newsom of Oakland, CA; Gehron and Ross of New York; Frank H. Holden of New York; and William Wilson Wurster of San Francisco, CA. He also spent six months traveling through Europe.
Williams worked in Oregon in 1933 and returned to California in 1934. During World War II, Williams was employed as a project planner by the Federal Public Housing Authority. He designed some commercial and industrial structures, including department stores, but focused on designing modern houses. He developed a series of designs for modern living using contemporary materials (concrete masonry and interlocking block).

Scope and Content of Collection

This collection, which spans the years 1926-1991 (bulk 1926-1948), consists of publications, drawings, photographs, and a smattering of correspondence relating to the architectural career of Alfred C. Williams. It includes a fair sampling of his student work, his travel sketchbooks, and project records relating to his work in private practice in the San Francisco Bay Area. The collection contains no records of his work outside the architectural field. The collection is organized in three series: personal papers, professional papers, and project records.
The personal papers consist primarily of his student drawings and his sketchbooks from his travels through Europe. Noteworthy in both of these is his emerging interest in modern architecture, demonstrated by two student drawings of modern buildings based on the classical orders and by his sketches of modern buildings in Europe. Motifs from his European sketches can be found in his later residential designs.

Indexing Terms

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.

Subjects

Architects--California.
Architecture--California.

Genres and Forms of Material

Architectural records.
Architectural drawings.
Architectural photographs.

Project Index

The following is a list of architectural projects from the Alfred C. Williams Collection. For instructions on interpreting the Project Index, see The Guide to the Project Index at http://www.ced.berkeley.edu/cedarchives/pindex/guide.htm .
The Project Index list is arranged alphabetically by Project/Client Name and contains information, where available, about the location, date, project type, architect, collaborators, photographers, and formats for each project in the collection.

Project/Client Name (location, date, project type, architect) Collaborator (role), Photographer [Format - Ms=Manuscripts, Dr=Drawings, Ph=Photographs]

  • 5966 Zinn Drive House ( Oakland , CA ; 1942 ; Residential ) [ Ms ]
  • Belmont Country Club Properties: Four Residences ( Belmont , CA ; 1945 ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Benson, Dr. Kenelm W. ( Berkeley , CA ; 1951 ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Big Double Y Project Youth For Service and YWCA ( San Francisco , CA ; 1963-1965 ; Recreational ) [ Ms , Dr ]
  • Brockhoff, C.W. ( San Carlos , CA ; 1949 ; Residential ) Collaborator: Leo J. Sharps and Irving F. Brown, Associate Architects [ Ms Dr ]
  • Brown, Wallace Holmes, The Uplands ( Berkeley , CA ; 1951 ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Building Industry Center ( San Francisco , CA ; 1944 ; Commercial ) [ Dr ]
  • Competition: A Design for a Model Kitchen as submitted in the Frigidaire Competition ( n/a; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Ms , Dr ]
  • Competition: American Home Architectural Contest ( unknown; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Competition: Oakland National Housing Exposition House Competition ( Oakland , CA ; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Competition: Pencil Points Competition, Design for an Eight-Room House ( unknown; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Competition: Pencil Points, Flat-Glass Industry Architectural Competition ( unknown; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Design: 3 Bedrooms, 8 Closets, View, Montclair Highlands ( Oakland , CA ; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Design: 3 Houses on Caldwell Road ( Oakland , CA ; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Design: 5 Room House in Oakland ( Oakland , CA ; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Design: Book Dept., 1st Floor ( unknown; n.d. ; Commercial ) [ Dr ]
  • Design: Country Estate ( Prescott Hills , CA ; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Design: Duplex Residence ( unknown; 1966 ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Design: Four Room Dwelling with Attached Garage ( unknown; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Design: Four Room Residence ( Oakland , CA ; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Design: Four Room Residence Attached Garage ( unknown , ; 1939 ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Design: Plan No. 10, Schemes A, B, C, D ( unknown; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Design: Possible Magazine Entry ( unknown ; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Design: Six Room Suburban Home ( unknown , ; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Design: Untitled ( unknown; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Eberhart, Howard Berkeley View Terrace, Fairlawn Drive ( Berkeley , CA ; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Edward Sommarstrom and Son Builders ( unknown; n.d. ; Residential- multi ) [ Dr ]
  • Groezinger, Seacliff Project, O'Brien Lot ( Seacliff , CA ; ca. 1939 ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • House in Alameda ( Alameda , CA ; n.d. ; Residential ) Collaborator: G. Reagan, Contractor [ Ph ]
  • Kaplan, Walter, Alterations and Additions Green Street and Pierce Street ( San Francisco , CA ; 1937 ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Koenig, Max Apartments ( Oakland , CA ; n.d. ; Residential- multi ) [ Dr ]
  • Larson, Charles E. Green Oaks No. 2 in Lindenwood, Wisteria Way ( Atherton , CA ; 19(?)8 ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Logan Residence ( San Francisco , CA ; n.d. ; Residential ) Collaborator: Fracchia & Trufelli, Contractors [ Ph ]
  • Mechanical Floor Plan: Three Bedroom Duplex Unit ( Kern County , CA ; n.d. ; Governmental ) [ Dr ]
  • Morgan, D.W. ( Berkeley , CA ; 1951; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Porta, Raphael ( San Francisco , CA ; 1960 ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Portfolio of Small Houses ( unknown ; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Proposed Up-and-Down Duplex Cooperative Improvement Company ( Oakland , CA ; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Railton, Richard: Terrace Shelter, 6 Hazel Road ( Berkeley , CA ; 1951 ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Residence in Berkeley ( Berkeley , CA ; n.d. ; Residential ) Collaborator: Walter H. Anderson, (contractor) and Max Heinegg (photographer) [ Ph ]
  • Residence in Oakland ( Oakland , CA ; n.d. ; Residential ) Collaborator: George Hastings, Contractor [ Dr , Ph ]
  • Richardson, George J., Rio Del Mar ( Santa Cruz , CA ; 1937 ; Residential ) Collaborator: Hays McClellan, Builder ; Photographer: unknown [ Ms , Dr , Ph ]
  • Silven, Arthur C.: Addition, Millbrae Circle ( Millbrae , CA ; 1939 ; Residential ) [ Ms , Dr ]
  • SM Co. Spec., four houses ( unknown ; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Stone, Paul: Rear Garden Additions ( Berkeley , CA ; 1952 ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Thiel, A.A. ( Piedmont , CA ; 1937-1938, 1971 ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Twenty Designs for Modern Living in Concrete Masonry Homes and in Mortarless Interlocking Block Homes ( n/a, ; 1948 ; Residential ) [ Ms , Dr ]
  • UN Plaza Fountain, Suggested Design ( San Francisco , CA ; 1974 ; Civic ) [ Dr ]
  • Valencia Gardens, SF Housing Authority ( San Francisco , CA ; 1941 ; Governmental ) [ Dr ]
  • War Housing ( San Bruno , CA ; 1944 ; Governmental ) [ Dr ]
  • Williams, Alfred C., 2711 Woolsey Street, Additions and Alterations ( Berkeley , CA ; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Williams, Alfred C., 525 Arlington Road ( Redwood City , CA ; 1945 ; Residential )
  • Williams, Alfred C., 6391 Hillegass Avenue Deck Loggia ( Oakland , CA ; 1975 ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Williams, Alfred C., 661 Caldwell Road ( Oakland , CA ; ca. 1941 ; Residential ) Max Heinegg, photographer [ Ms , Dr , Ph ]
  • Williams, Alfred C., One Hazel Road ( Berkeley , CA ; 1950 ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Williams, George A., 126 Florence Avenue ( Oakland , CA ; 1941-1942 ; Residential ) [ Ms ]
  • Williams, H.J. ( Oakland , CA ; n.d. ; Residential ) [ Dr ]
  • Williams, Robert E., Broadway Terrace ( Oakland , CA ; 1938 ; Residential ) Collaborator: Archie Waring, Contractor J.H. Piatt, Surveyor [Dr , Ph ]

Related Collections

Said Collection of the International Peace and Conflict Resolution Division, School of International Service at American University, University Library.

Series Description and Container List

 

I. Personal Papers 1926-1991

Series Scope and Content Summary

Consists primarily of his student drawings and his travel sketches, which focus on Germany, Italy, and Spain. Also includes clippings collected by Williams, a copy of his obituary, and a photograph of Williams as a young man.
 

A. Biographical Information

Box 1, Folder 1

Alfred C. Williams Obituary 2006

Box 1, Folder 1

Alfred C. Williams Photograph n.d.

Box 1, Folder 1

Misc. professional envelopes and businesscard n.d.

Box 1, Folder 1

Autobiography 1962

 

B. Student Work

Box 4, Folder 1

Pencil Drawings of Classical Orders 1929

Box 5, Folder 1

Ink Drawings of Classical Orders 1926

Box FF 1

Student Drawings: Ink, Pencil, Watercolor ca. 1927-1932

Box T 1

Student Drawing: Ink, Pencil, Watercolor n.d.

 

C. Travel

Box 3, Folder V. 1

Sketchbook, Europe n.d.

Box 3, Folder V. 2

Sketchbook, Europe n.d.

Box 4, Folder 2

Sketches, Europe n.d.

 

II. Professional Papers 1932-1991

Series Scope and Content Summary

Consists of a small amount of correspondence and a collection of articles and designs published by Williams. Also of note is a 1991 letter by Williams to the resident of 661 Caldwell Road in Oakland, CA, whose home burned in the 1991 Oakland hills fire. This Oakland residence was designed by Williams in 1941 as his own home and office. Research materials include industry information on concrete construction techniques. The publications focus primarily on modern residential design and were published in the mid-1930s to 1940s.
Box 1, Folder 2

Professional Correspondence 1944-1991

Box 1, Folder 2a

Correspondence Related to Concrete Construction Research 1948

Box 1, Folder 3

Publications ca. 1932-1944

Box 1, Folder 4

Twenty Designs for Modern Living 1948

Box 1, Folder 7

Publication Drafts ca. 1943-1944

Box 1, Folder 8

Office Records ca. 1950-1955

Box 1, Folder 9

Class Notes - Engineering, Science, and Management Defense Training 1942

Box 2, Folder 7

Concrete Construction, Manufacturer's Data and Research 1928-1948

Box 2, Folder 8

General Reference ca. 1928-1948

Box 2, Folder 9

General Reference 1946

 

IV.Project Records ca. 1937-1975

Series Scope and Content Summary

Consists of photographs of completed residential projects; the photographs are primarily of his own house at 661 Caldwell Road, Oakland, CA. Includes drawings for residential projects, some completed but many simply designs. Of primary interest are his plans and elevations for "Twenty Designs for Modern Living." Also included are designs for a few commercial, industrial and public structures and for several competitions.
 

A. Files

Scope and Content Note

* See Project Index
 

B. Drawings

Scope and Content Note

* See Project Index
 

C. Photographs

Scope and Content Note

* See Project Index