R. H. Hunt
1862 – 1937
Who was R. H. Hunt?
Reuben Harrison Hunt, also known as R. H. Hunt, was an American architect who spent most of his life in Chattanooga, Tennessee. He is considered to have been one of the city's most significant early architects. He also designed major public building projects in other states.
He came to Chattanooga in 1882 and within four years had established a successful architectural firm. Hunt designed a number of Chattanooga's homes and public buildings, including the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Auditorium, the Joel W. Solomon Federal Building and U.S. Courthouse with Shreve, Lamb and Harmon, the Hamilton County, Tennessee Courthouse, the James and Maclellan buildings, the Carnegie Library and the St. John's Hotel.
Hunt also designed churches throughout the South. This included well-known Chattanooga churches such as Second Presbyterian Church and First Baptist Church, as well as The Tabernacle in Atlanta. Numerous works by Hunt are preserved and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, 21 of which are covered in one 1979 survey study.
The U.S. Post Office and Courthouse in Chattanooga, Tennessee, built 1932-1933, was Hunt's last major work. Hunt designed every major public building constructed in Chattanooga between 1895 and 1935. He was also the architect of local churches, hospitals, and private office buildings, as well as similar public and private buildings throughout the South. In 1938 the Chattanooga building was recognized by the American Institute of Architects as one of the 150 finest buildings constructed in the previous twenty years in the United States, and it was featured in an AIA photographic exhibit in America and Europe.