Midcentury Love

20131221-140153.jpgI have often argued that the square, blocky buildings of the 1940s-1970s that dominate American cityscapes don’t deserve all the hate that they get. A lot of them have very nice proportions, and I find their minimal adornment preferable to plastic historical pastiche that has dominated architecture since the 1980s. See for example my favorite plain midcentury building in out neighborhood of College Terrace in Fredericksburg, the Washington Building pictured at left. And now there’s a blogger who shares my feelings. Actually, he feels them much more strongly than I do, strongly enough to have developed an extremely impressive (and impressively productive) blog on the subject, Midcentury Mundane. I cannot express how much I love this blog, both its concept and its execution. Plus, lots of bonus Upstate New York love, and he even covered Fredericksburg’s “Big Ugly” Although he called it “not a very interesting and engaging building,” obviously I secretly love it. It provides your eye such a nice break from the cloying cuteness of Caroline St.


  1. Frampton Tolbert says:

    Hi Will, thanks for the shout-out on your website. In fact, I don’t know how you would know this but I am a Mary Washington HP alum, class of 1998. I now work in historic preservation advocacy for a non-profit in New York City, the Historic Districts Council. I’m also involved in both Victorian and mid-century architecture non profits.

    All the best,
    Frampton Tolbert

    • admin says:

      Hi Frampton,

      Thanks for getting in touch! I had no idea you were a UMW alum. That’s great, and what a coincidence. I’d love to hear more about your work sometime.


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