Cosmopolitan design in the Upper Midwest the nineteenth century architecture of Edward Townsend Mix

Szczesny-Adams, Christy M., Department of Architectural History, University of Virginia
Wilson, Richard, Department of Architectural History, University of Virginia
Bluestone, Daniel, Department of Architectural History, University of Virginia
Nelson, Louis, Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost, University of Virginia
Barolsky, Paul, Department of Art, University of Virginia

Architect Edward Townsend Mix's (1831-1890) contributions to American design in the nineteenth century were significant as he played a critical role in the aesthetic development of the Upper Midwest. Mix utilized a versatile approach with his ability to design in a variety of styles and types depending upon the needs of the building, the desires of the patron, and his personal inclination. Through his East Coast background, his expansive architectural library, his connection with the local Yankee population, his association with other prominent architects and organizations, and his interest in contemporary architectural trends, Mix revolutionized the area with cosmopolitan architecture, creating a reputation as one of its foremost professional architects. It was during the middle of the nineteenth century that a young architect arrived in Milwaukee; his arrival altered the city's course of architectural design. It is through an examination of Mix's designs that one will be able to see the Upper Midwest's transformation from its frontier status of the 1850s to its sophisticated position in the 1870s and 1880s preparing the region for its prominence in the twentieth century. Mix designed more than 270- known buildings many of which still exist today, he served as the State Architect of Wisconsin from 1864-1867, and held a long-time membership in the American Institute of Architects, in addition to being a founding member of the Western Association of Architects. Throughout his career E. Townsend Mix continued to expand his architectural and engineering repertoire to create buildings that were aesthetically and technologically innovative, providing the Upper Midwest with an evolving style based on European and East Coast sophistication through the cosmopolitan design ideals articulated in his buildings.

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PHD (Doctor of Philosophy)
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