W. Wheeler Smith

Architect, Deceased Person

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Who is W. Wheeler Smith?

William Wheeler Smith, AIA, professionally known as "W. Wheeler Smith," was an American architect and developer active in late-nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century New York City. His home office was located at 17 East 77th Street, New York City. He previously occupied 971 Madison Avenue.

Smith was a self-made millionaire and noted philanthropist. "He started as an apprentice in an architect's office and worked his way to the front rank of New York architects."

The most valuable properties he owned were 3, 5, and 7 Wall Street, 84 Broadway, "which were valued by Mr. Smith at $3,500,000 and on which is a mortgage of $1,400,000, and 71 Wall Street, valued at $550,000. A few years before Mr. Smith's death he decided to bequeath the revenue from the building at 71 Wall Street to the Association of the Relief of Respectable, Aged, and Indigent Females, at Amsterdam Avenue and 104th Street, and he made such a provision in his will,."

His 1872 Gothic Revival design of St. Nicholas Collegiate Reformed Protestant Dutch Church, a Reformed Protestant Dutch church in Midtown, Manhattan, located on the northwest corner of Fifth Avenue and Forty-eight Street, built in brownstone was “distinguished by an elegantly tapered spire that, according to John A. Bradley in the New York Times, ‘many declare…the most beautiful in this country.’” The congregation dated back to 1628. After “considerable public debate,” the church was demolished in 1949 for the Sinclair Oil Building.

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Submitted
on July 23, 2013

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