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This building marks the ascendancy of the Providence Journal into the state’s principal newspaper, a posture reinforced by the building’s construction in the depths of the Great Depression. The building itself reflects two principal themes in the work of this architect, Albert Kahn. Based in Detroit, Kahn’s business consisted largely of commissions for automobile manufacturers; large, sprawling, utilitarian manufacturing plants for automobile production and large elaborately detailed period-revival houses (usually Gregorian or Tudor) for the magnates who ran the companies. So here we have an industrial building (changing technologies removed the printing presses elsewhere in the mid-1980s) dressed up in Gregorian guise. The somewhat ponderous fourth story, added in 1948, still remains its minimalist Moderne auditorium and board room, neither open to the public but remarkable as a surviving mid-twentieth-century interiors, of which Rhode Island has so few.

– 2003 Guide to Providence Architecture

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© 2023 Guide to Providence Architecture. All rights reserved. Design by J. Hogue at Highchair designhaus, with development & support by Kay Belardinelli.