Frist Center for the Arts, former US Post Office in Nashville

former Nashville post office

In another of the distinctive and impressive US Post Offices constructed during the depression era of President Roosevelt’s administration, the facility in Nashville was “built in a record 18 months” according to Sanford Meyers on the Architecture Tour by The Tennessean. (Take time to watch the 3 minute video tour–you will be glad you did!)  Although it was built in 1933, the approval came earlier during Hoover’s pre-New Deal funding, and was not funded by the New Deal administration.  From 1933-1934, Marr and Holman, architects, along with contractor Frank Messer Company, utilized

…the most distinctive architectural styles of the period: classicism and Art Deco…spare, streamlined exterior faced in white Georgia marble with gray-pink Minnesota granite is an example of ‘starved’ or ‘stripped’ classicism. (The Building, fristcenter.org)

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The interior features a variety of marble designs and sources, including Fantasia Rose (East Tennessee), Monte Neva (East Tennessee), Westfield (Pennsylvania), Royal Jersey Green, and Verde Antingua.  The inside also contains cast aluminum doors and grillwork along with the colored mark and stone on the floors and walls.

‘I’ve always marveled,’ architect Charles Waterfield, Jr., observed fifty years later, ‘that such a sophisticated and expensive building came out of the ground in the post-depression years.’ The building reflects ‘the government’s commitment to good architecture as a function of the recovery.’

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2 Responses to Frist Center for the Arts, former US Post Office in Nashville

  1. socialbridge says:

    Just loved the tour. What an impressive building!

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