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Spivey Building
417 Missouri Avenue

Built by one A.T. Spivey, editor of East St. Louis's newspaper the Journal, this is the tallest building in southern Illinois, and helps mark out one end of downtown. It is vacant and deteriorating after stints housing the Chamber of Commerce and State Community College.

The architect wasn't Louis Sullivan, but he clearly would have liked to be. From the fine tracery surrounding the lower floor windows in a narrow band, to the spandrel panels with their organic pattern, to the ahistorical, geometric designs of the cornice, the influence of Sullivan's ornamentation style is clear. The building as a whole lacks the sort of clear structural and volumetric expression that typified Sullivan's work; however, it's still a handsome presence on the skyline.

Link: The Spivey Building at Ecology of Absence.

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