Just driving down Florida Boulevard, you wouldn’t know that many of these buildings are steeped in historical significance.
Dive deep into the city’s architectural history next Wednesday, Nov. 15, as LSU art history professor Darius Spieth gives a presentation on midcentury modernist architecture. The lecture will focus on the Anchor Marine Inc. Building, Republic Tower, Union Federal Savings & Loan Association, IBM Building, Fidelity National Bank and the GMAC Building scattered along Florida Boulevard.
These days, the Anchor Marine Inc. Building has become the Louisiana Resource Center for Educators and Republic Tower houses more than 150 offices under its new name, Mid City Tower.
Despite their bland appearance, these buildings are historically significant. Built in the 1950s and ’60s, the buildings relate to larger national and international styles and trends, especially the Bauhaus, the International Style, functionalism and the designs of Frank Lloyd Wright.
The lecture will focus on local architects including A. Hays Town, Lewis P. Manson & Thomson, John F. Wilson & Robert M. Coleman, Lionel H. Abshire & Associates and W. Conway Washburn. Spieth will also discuss how these structures fit into Baton Rouge’s urban development patterns during the mid-20th century.
“Mid-Century Modernism in Baton Rouge” will be held at the Main Library at Goodwood next Wednesday, Nov. 15, 7-8:30 p.m. The library is at 7711 Goodwood Blvd.