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Abbott, Merkt and Company records, 1906-1994

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Preferred Citation

Abbott, Merkt and Company records, Department of Drawings & Archives, Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University.

COinS Metadata available (e.g., for Zotero).

Summary Information

At a Glance

Avery ID:D&A Abbott Merkt View CLIO record
Creator(s):Abbott, Merkt and Company.
Title:Abbott, Merkt and Company records, 1906-1994
Physical description:77 linear feet of papers, 14,099 drawings, 6,882 photographic items.
Language(s): In English.
Access: This collection is available for use by qualified readers by appointment in the Dept. of Archives & Drawings' Reading Room, Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library at Columbia University. The majority of this collection is maintained in off-site storage and must retrieved with advance notification. For further information and to make an appointment to use this collection, please call (212) 854-4110.  More information »
Types of Materials in the Collection:Correspondence, typescript papers, carbon typescript papers, holograph papers, printed papers, photographic prints, film negatives, photographic transparencies, architectural reprographic prints, and mixed media drawings.

Arrangement

Arrangement

This material is arranged in eight series: Abbott, Merkt & Company Project Records; Abbott, Merkt & Company Office Records; Harrington and Cortelyou Records; Public Works Administration Records; United States. Dept. of Agriculture. Bureau of Public Roads Records; United States War Department Records; Richard H. Tatlow III, Professional Papers; and Richard H. Tatlow III, Personal Papers.

The arrangement of materials within these series is described at the beginning of each subseries inventory, where appropriate.

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Description

Scope and Content

This collection primarily contains architectural drawings, photographs, business records and reference materials related to the projects and designs of architectural and engineering firm Abbott, Merkt and Company. A subsidiary portion of the collection includes drawings, photographs and papers related to the life and career of Richard H. Tatlow, III, president of Abbott Merkt, as well as the firms and agencies for which he also worked.

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Using the Collection

Access Restrictions

 This collection is available for use by qualified readers by appointment in the Dept. of Archives & Drawings' Reading Room, Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library at Columbia University. The majority of this collection is maintained in off-site storage and must retrieved with advance notification. For further information and to make an appointment to use this collection, please call (212) 854-4110.

Restrictions on Use

Columbia University is providing access to the materials in the Library's collections solely for noncommercial educational and research purposes. The unauthorized use, including, but not limited to, publication of the materials without the prior written permission of Columbia University is strictly prohibited. All inquiries regarding permission to publish should be submitted in writing to the Director, Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University. For additional guidance, see Columbia University Libraries' publication policy.

In addition to permission from Columbia University, permission of the copyright owner (if not Columbia University) and/or any holder of other rights (such as publicity and/or privacy rights) may also be required for reproduction, publication, distributions, and other uses. Responsibility for making an independent legal assessment of any item and securing any necessary permissions rests with the persons desiring to publish the item. Columbia University makes no warranties as to the accuracy of the materials or their fitness for a particular purpose.

Preferred Citation

Abbott, Merkt and Company records, Department of Drawings & Archives, Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University.

For Further Information

For more information about using the collections and conducting research in the Department of Drawings & Archives, please see our FAQ.

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About the Finding Aid / Processing Information

Finding aid written by Annemarie van Roessel, Mellon Project Archivist, Dept. of Drawings & Archives, Avery Architectural and Fine Arts LIbrary, Columbia University.

Processing Information

This collection was processed by Iciar Lucena, under the direction of Annemarie van Roessel, Mellon Project Archivist, Department of Drawings & Archives, Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, in 2005-2006. Additions were processed by Scott Bisogni (Archives Intern) under the direction of Shelley Hayreh, Avery Archivist.

EAD instance generated by Annemarie van Roessel from Access database and MS Word file, April 4, 2006. Finding aid written in English.
    2006-04-06 File created.
    2009-12-03 File revised.

CLIO ID: 5654955 View CLIO record

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Index Terms

The names and terms listed below are represented in this collection. Links below allow searches at Columbia University through the Archival Collections Portal and through CLIO, the catalog for Columbia University Libraries, as well as ArchiveGRID, a consortial/union catalog offered by OCLC that allows users to search the holdings of multiple archives and libraries.

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Subjects (Corporate Names)

HeadingCUL Archives:
Portal
CUL Collections:
CLIO
Nat'l / Int'l Archives:
ArchiveGRID
Abraham & Straus.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
B. Altman & Co.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
B. Gertz, Inc.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Bamberger's.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Bloomingdale's (Firm).PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
G. Fox and Company (Hartford, Conn.)PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Gimbel Brothers.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Hecht Company.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
John Wanamaker (Firm).PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Lord & Taylor.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Macy's (Firm).PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Newark International Airport.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Saks & Company (New York, N.Y.)PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Sears, Roebuck and Company.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Sinclair and Valentine Company.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Strawbridge & Clothier.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Woodward & Lothrop.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
United Parcel Service.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Western Union Telegraph Company.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
United States Postal Service.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
John F. Kennedy International Airport.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Pan American World Airways, Inc.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID

Topics

HeadingCUL Archives:
Portal
CUL Collections:
CLIO
Nat'l / Int'l Archives:
ArchiveGRID
Architecture--New York (N.Y.)PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Architects--United States. PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Automobile parking--United StatesPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Shopping centers--United States--Paramus (New Jersey)--Garden State Plaza.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Shopping centers--United States--Eatontown (New Jersey)--Monmouth Shopping Center.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Shopping centers--United States--Wayne (New Jersey)--Willowbrook Shopping Center.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Shopping centers--United States--Alexandria (Virginia)--Landmark Shopping Center.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Shopping centers--United States.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Stores--United States.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Warehouses--United States.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID

Additional Creators (Personal Names)

HeadingCUL Archives:
Portal
CUL Collections:
CLIO
Nat'l / Int'l Archives:
ArchiveGRID
Ashley, Edward Everett, 1906-PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Amiaga, Gil.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Garland, Roger.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Le Maire, Eleanor.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Robertson, Edwin L.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Schwartzman, Daniel.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Stoller, Ezra.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Tatlow, Richard H., IIIPortalCLIOArchiveGRID

Additional Creators (Corporate Names)

HeadingCUL Archives:
Portal
CUL Collections:
CLIO
Nat'l / Int'l Archives:
ArchiveGRID
Copeland, Novak & Israel.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Harrington & CortelyouPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Kahn & Jacobs.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Morganelli, Heumann & Rudd.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Oliver/Breyer Design Associates.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Raymond Loewy Associates.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
United States. Bureau of Public Roads.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
United States. Public Works Administration.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
United States. War Dept.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID

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History / Biographical Note

Historical and Biographical Note

Abbott, Merkt and Company

Founded in 1923 in New York City by Hunley Abbott and Oswald L. Merkt as an engineering and construction service for industrial plants. The firm was expanded to include architectural services in 1929 and Abbott, Merkt and Company grew to become one of the leading architecture and engineering firms on the East Coast after World War II, acquiring major commissions for commercial and industrial and commercial buildings and civil infrastructure in the United States and internationally. Richard H. Tatlow, III was president from 1945 to 1985, later joined on the Board of Directors by J. Stanley Nants Jr. and Richard H. Tatlow, IV. Among Abbott Merkt’s most prominent commissions were major terminal and support facilities for Pan American World Airways at John F. Kennedy Airport and for American Airlines at Newark International Airport; department stores and merchandise warehouses across the country for such clients as Macy’s, Saks and Company, Hecht’s, Bambergers, B. Altman, and J.C. Penny and Company; major bulk materials handling facilities for United Parcel Service and the United States Post Office; schools and commercial centers in France, Mexico, The Netherlands, Syria and Saudi Arabia; and for parking structures across the East Coast. Abbott, Merkt, beginning, in 1951, was also partnered with the New York architectural firm Kahn & Jacobs, later bought by the St. Louis-based architecture firm HOK, on variety of airport-related projects. Ceasing operations in 1985, Abbott Merkt Architects, Inc. was acquired in 1987 by a subsidiary of the Los Angeles-based architecture and engineering firm Daniel Mann Johnson and Mendenhall (DMJM).

Richard H. Tatlow, III (1906-1993)

Tatlow was born in Denver, Colorado, in 1906 and received his bachelor of science degree in civil engineering from the University of Colorado in 1927 and his master’s degree in engineering in 1933. In 1927, Tatlow was hired by the United States Bureau of Public Roads to assist in designing bridges and roads throughout the United States. Joining the Kansas City, Missouri, engineering firm of Harrington and Cortelyou in 1929, Tatlow was named partner with John Lyle Harrington in 1935. In 1940, Tatlow was commission to the United States War Department as a Lieutenant Colonel, serving on the department’s Construction Advisory Board. He was eventually named Colonel in the Army Corps of Engineers, responsible for the supervision of new facilities and the implementation o statistical quality control. In 1945, Tatlow joined Abbott Merkt & Company as president and member of the Board of Directors, eventually becoming chairman of the board. Throughout his career, Tatlow authored numerous articles and reports on a variety of engineering and management topics, including merchandise distribution, bridge engineering, shopping center design, and transportation planning. He was an active member of the Construction Industry Advisory Council of the United States Chamber of Commerce; the Engineering Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences; and the National Academy of Engineering. Tatlow was also president of the American Society of Civil Engineers in 1968. Tatlow retired from Abbott, Merkt and Company in 1985, and died in Scarsdale, New York, in 1993.

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