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Last Chance to Save a Modernist Icon by G. Milton Small, Jr.

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The former Northwestern Mutual Insurance Building at 3515 Glenwood Avenue is living on borrowed time. The building I wrote about in 2008, G. Milton Small – My Favorite Architect, is scheduled for demolition unless a tenant steps forward to lease the space.

George Smart of North Carolina Modernist Houses is leading an effort to save this magnificent building, and will hold an open house at the site on May 7th, from 4:30-7:00 PM.

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Goodbye Little Maryknoll — Another Raleigh Modernist Landmark Lost

Photo Special GNR Correspondent Jesse Dotson

Photo credit: Jesse Dotson, GNR special correspondent

Within days of the destruction of the exquisitely designed modernist Paschal house last month, the Diocese of Raleigh announced that the former residence of the Bishop of Raleigh on Bilyeu St., known familiarly as “Little Maryknoll,” would soon meet the same fate. Sadly, demolition began Wednesday.

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Raleigh, Then and Now: Nehi Bottling Company

Top: 1944, Bottom: 2012
Top image courtesy State Archives of North Carolina

Nestled beside the Wilmont Apartments on Hillsborough Street sits one of Raleigh’s earliest examples of modernist architecture.  Built in 1937, the building first functioned as the Nehi Bottling Company. Designed by acclaimed Raleigh architect William Henley Deitrick, it is a great example of the International style.

This early style of modernist architecture suggests volume rather than mass, and function rather than form.  The only ornamentation original to the building are the black glass tiles flanking the main entrance, some of which have fallen off in recent years.

Another example of this style, this time residential, can be found nearby on Turner St.
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Discuss Raleigh

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    • Morris Willis: I was a member of The Huckleberry Mudflap in the 60’s and purchased a Gibson SG Standard from...
    • Kylie Byrne: @Pam Powell, I believe my Granny lived in the orphanage from 1937 until approximately 1945 or 1946. Are...
    • Banjo John: We explored the tunnels in the late 70s. You could enter by the door in the Free Expression Tunnel and...
    • Mitch Hazouri: I don’t recall making the claim that Mitch’s is the oldest bar in Raleigh. I’ll...
    • BJM: I worked as a Red Cross volunteer in the house next door..which was the Red Cross Chapter house. I never saw the...
    • Suzanne Whitmeyer: Ian – thanks for reaching out and sharing the amazing pictures of my home circa 1925. What a...
    • Margaret Griffin Dettmer: Like Mary stated, MSGR Thomas P Griffin was our great uncle. I wasn’t born until 1934...
    • RaleighBorn: Great blog. Sometimes, when there was a teacher workday at Francis Lacy I’d go to work with my...


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