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Frederick H. Meyer Collection, 1904-1962
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Access Points
  • Biography
  • Scope and Contents Note
  • Related Collections

  • Descriptive Summary

    Collection Title: Frederick H. Meyer Collection,
    Date (inclusive): 1904-1962
    Collection Number: 1976-1
    Creator: Meyer, Frederick H., 1872-1961 Meyer & O'Brien Meyer & Johnson Meyer & Evers
    Extent: 6 boxes, 30 flat boxes, 8 flat file drawers
    Repository: Environmental Design Archives.
    University of California, Berkeley.
    Berkeley, California.
    Abstract: The collection documents the architectural work of Frederick H. Meyer, completed in a number of partnerships. It contains records of a wide range of building types throughout California.
    Language: English.

    Administrative Information


    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], Frederick H. Meyer Collection, (1976-1), Environmental Design Archives. University of California, Berkeley. Berkeley, California.

    Acquisition Information

    The collection was donated in 1976.

    Access Points

    Hospital architecture.
    Vernacular architecture--California.


    Frederick H. Meyer (1876-1961)
    Frederick H. Meyer was born in San Francisco. His father was a cabinet maker and Frederick attended pubic and private schools. He began his career in the early 1890s as a draftsman for a planing mill and worked in a number of architectural offices prior to beginning his own practice. He is listed in the San Francisco City Directory under Newsom & Meyer in 1899-1900, under his own name in 1901 and as Meyer & O'Brien beginning in 1902.
    Meyer was a prolific designer, responsible for many of the buildings designed in the San Francisco area after the 1906 earthquake and fire. In 1913, Under Jim Rolph's Mayoral administration, Meyer was appointed to serve as one of the three members of the San Francisco Civic Center Commission, whose tasks included the evolution and supervision of the City's Civic Center plan. A fellow of the AIA, Meyer's practice consisted primarily of public, commercial and industrial projects, including public libraries, breweries, hospitals, and public schools. Among his most notable buildings are the Humboldt Bank and the Monadnock Building, tall buildings for their time and recognized for their innovative use of large glass areas and their incorporation of fire-safety designs and equipment. An avid sailor, Meyer was active in numerous professional, civic and recreational organizations.
    He practiced with a variety of firms including: Meyer & O'Brien (Smith); Meyer & Johnson (Albin R.); Meyer & Evers (Albert J.); Howard (John G.), Meyer & Reid (John Jr.); Riedy (Dodge A.) & Meyer; Meyer, Peugh (W.D.), Rist (Martin) and Pflueger (Timothy L.); Meyer & Associates - Jorgenson (Mark T.), Keyser (Lawrence H); The successor firms to Meyer's practice were Ashley (George Fred), Keyser & Runge; Johnson (Alfred W.) & Runge; Runge (Chris W.) (1906-1972).

    Municipal Blue Book of San Francisco, 1915
    Unpublished biography on Ashley, Keyser and Runge letterhead, 1961 (photocopy), Environmental Design Archives

    Scope and Contents Note

    Records of the architectural practice of Frederick H. Meyer span the years 1904-1962 and are organized into three series: Office Records, Project Records, and Additional Donations. A job index, found in the office records, provides a comprehensive list of Meyer's projects. Office records also include photograph albums.
    The collection primarily consists of project records containing specifications and plans, and photographs of completed projects. These records document the work done by Meyer in a number of partnerships, and contain a wide range of building types throughout the state. Projects include office buildings such as San Francisco's Humboldt Bank and Monadnock Buildings; club buildings such as the Elks Lodge in Bakersfield, and California Hall and the YMCA in San Francisco; Lagunda Honda and San Francisco General, and Sutter Hospital in Sacramento; numerous Pacific Gas & Electric substations, breweries, banks, hotels, schools, industrial structures, commercial buildings, firehouses, and a few residences. There are drawings for most projects and specifications for some.
    The Environmental Design Library houses his library of 165 books and 90 magazines. The bulk of the collection was donated in 1976.

    Related Collections

    Title: Chris W. Runge Collection
    Identifier/Call Number: (1976-3),
    Contributing Institution: Environmental Design Archives