The People of Philadelphia vs. Edmund Bacon

Philly, Boats, Architecture, Art, and Other Interests


Theodore Roosevelt, Sr. residence interior design
6 West 57th St., New York, NY

     The Theodore Roosevelt, Sr. (father of the future President) house on 57th Street was designed by noted architect Russell Sturgis with Frank Furness responsible for the design of the interiors and furniture. Furness utilized furniture maker Daniel Pabst for the execution of his designs. Many of the pieces were removed to the family’s home at Sagamore Hill, in Oyster Bay, NY, when they were deemed not fashionable enough for the home in New York City which was later demolished.
     On the legs of the dining room table, now held by the High Museum of Art in Atlanta and seen here in the first and third photos, one can make out figures of heron eating frogs. Animals were used for ornament on a number of the pieces in the Roosevelt home complimenting his common use of plant inspired ornament, as can be seen in the photos of the bed, now housed at Sagamore Hill.


A large-format color business card for F. Moras’ Lithographic Establishment in Philadelphia, approx 1868.


A large-format color business card for F. Moras’ Lithographic Establishment in Philadelphia, approx 1868.

1 year ago

Philadelphia Soccer in 1913-1914

SOCCER FOOT BALL IN PHILADELPHIA. By Oliver Hemingway, Philadelphia, Pa.
The Allied American Foot Ball Association of Philadelphia again proved during the season of 1913-1914 that amateur soccer can be run and played better than by professionals, in and around Philadelphia. The association had a membership of thirty-five clubs, some of which only organized after the playing season had started. These clubs became affiliated members.

The season was an eventful one. First and foremost was the fact that one of the allied members, Bethlehem, won the American Foot Ball Association Cup, the first time that any allied club played in that competition. Its tie games caused replays, which completely upset the Allied schedule, and it was necessary to close the season with two first division games unplayed. Bethlehem had to compete seven times to win the last three games in the cup competition.

In the various cup competitions, in which the Allied teams took part. I have already mentioned the American Cup contest which was won by the Bethlehem. I will now take up the National Cup competition, which was conducted by the United States Foot Ball Association. Five clubs from the Allied entered, namely. Kensington. Bethlehem, Disston. West Philadelphia and Peabody. In the first round Bethlehem defeated Disston, 7-0, at Bethlehem, while Kensington won by forfeit from Tacony, owing to a misunderstanding, Taconv playing an American Cup game the same date. West Philadelphia and Peabody drew byes. In the second round, West Philadelphia defeated Kensington, 4-0 ; Bethlehem traveled to Braddock in Western Pennsylvania and won out in extra time ; Peabody defeated Wissinoming of the Pennsylvania League, 3-0, after a drawn game. 1-1.

The third round found three Allied clubs still left in the race. Bethlehem met its Waterloo at Brooklyn, losing by a penalty goal to nothing. West Philadelphia went to New Bedford, Mass., and played in a downpour of rain, the New Bedford men proving victorious. Peabody was drawn at home with the St. George F.C. of New York. The Saints made the trip to Philadelphia, but the weather was so bad that the referee refused to allow the game to be played and the St. George F.C. forfeited as it could not get a team together to make the second trip. This left Peabody the only allied club to reach the fourth round, and by a peculiar coincidence, it was drawn against New Bedford, the team that knocked out West Philadelphia in the third round. The game was drawn to be played in Philadelphia, but for a consideration, Peabody agreed to stage the game in New Bedford, on March 28. It was well contested, but the Peabody players failed to take advantage of their opportunities and New Bedford qualified for the semi-final.

The Allied Amateur Cup competition, which is run by the Allied Association, drew eighteen entries. All of the byes were given in the first round, only two games being necessary to bring the number clown to sixteen clubs. The draw brought Reading and Allegheny together, the former winning, 9-0, and Kensington defeated Atlantic, 10-3.

The results of the second round were as follows : Manchester Unity 2, Audubon 0, after a drawn game ; Philadelphia Electric 5. Reading 2 ; Putnam 4, Smith ; Bethlehem 9, Centenary ; West Philadelphia 11. Windsor 0. The surprise of the series was the Wanderers defeat of Peabody, 7-1. This game was played on a snow-covered field. Linwood Hibernians defeated Fairhill, 3-1, and Kensington sprung a little surprise by defeating Falls, 2-1. The third round resulted as follows : Philadelphia Electrics 5, Manchester Unity 1 : Bethlehem 3, Putnam ; West Philadelphia 3, Wanderers, 2 ; Linwood Hibernians 6. Kensington 1. In the semi-final. West Philadelphia defeated Linwood Hibernians, 2-1, and the Philadelphia Electrics forfeited to Bethlehem. The date for the final game was fixed for May 3, but Bethlehem was ordered to replay its American Cup game on May 4. and Bethlehem was granted its request to postpone the Allied Cup game. When the contest was rescheduled, West Philadelphia refused to play, claiming that the game should not have been postponed from May 3. Bethlehem was finally declared the winner by forfeit. _____________________________________________________


By E. M. Jones Philadelphia, Pa

The American League of Association Foot Ball clubs concluded its second successful season, with the championship going to the Philadelphia Electrics, better known locally as the “Live Wires.” who went through the season without a single defeat. The runner-up was the strong Cardington A.C., from Delaware County, former champion of the Allied American Foot Ball Association of Philadelphia. It was closely trailed by the Boys’ Club, last year’s champion ; Victor Athletics, a newly organized club ; Rangers Field Club, composed chiefly of Scottish-American players ; Frankford Boys’ Club, champion of the United League last season, and Whitehall Rovers, runners-up of the United League for 1912-13, who had been advanced into the senior league. Won, Lost. Drawn. For. Against. Points. _____________________________________________________


The season of 1913-1914 was a most successful one, and the league has every reason to congratulate itself on the splendid results acquired. _____________________________________________________


By H. W. Trend.

Soccer in Bethlehem during the 1913-1914 season was, without doubt, a great success and has come to stay. This was clearly shown by the response the people of Bethlehem gave the local team when they began to realize just what their champions were doing in putting the name of Bethlehem on the Soccer map, and the festivities that were showered upon the team after they won the American Foot Ball Association Cup and Triple Championship. namely : The American Foot Ball Association Cup, Philadelphia-Allied American League (first division), and Philadelphia-Allied Amateur Cup, clearly showed the feeling towards the champions by the public of Bethlehem.


Library Company of Philadelphia
Philadelphia, PA

The Library Company of Philadelphia on the NW corner of Locust and Juniper Streets was designed by Frank Furness in 1879. Furness would receive the commission after a nearly unanimous vote put him ahead of fellow competitors Theophilus Parsons Chandler Jr.Collins & Autenrieth, Addison Hutton, and James Charles Sidney.

Motivated by a desire for a modern, more fireproof building and Philadelphia’s cultural shift to the west with the construction of City Hall, the Library Company requested a building “as plain as would be consistent with a decent regard for the character of the institution, and be as far as possible a reproduction its exterior of the present structure.” 


From Frank Furness: Architecture and the Violent Mind by Michael J. Lewis:

     ”Clearly these requirements suggest not one building but two: either a plain modern one or a reprise of (William) Thornton's elegant Palladian design. Baffled, most of the competitors flailed in the unhappy middle ground between copyism and utilitarianism. The firm of Collins & Autenrieth, those German academics against whom Furness often competed, submitted two entirely different designs: one, a lackluster updating of Thornton's building and the other, a modern German Gothic design. This tentativeness was fatal, for Furness was by now an audacious competitor. Making Virtue out of the restricted budget, he capitalized on his limited palatte of brick and terra cotta, boldy fracturing his roofline with top-heavy wall dormers and a giddy display of chimneys. He also broke the composition into discrete parts and positioned an entrance block fronting the larger reading room. Benjamin Franklin's statue, a hallmark of Thronton's original building, was now thrust forward into space in a precarious aedicule. (In execution, the directors of the library ensured that Franklin's perch was made more visible secure.) The result was anything but a drab brick box. Within was a reading room of striking openness and lightness, the glass and iron formula of Furness's bank interiors transposed to a more restful key in a space intended for repose.
     Furness provided just enough tribute to the original building to satisfy his clients, but otherwise he updated his colonial forms freely, just as he did with his Gothic forms.”

 In 1940, suffering from financial problems, the Library Company tore the Furness building down to be replaced with a parking lot in which they had a stake in the profitsThey would operate out of the Ridgeway building at 900 South Broad Street until 1965, moving back to Locust Street where they are currently housed at 1314 Locust.


(The interior can be seen here.)

1 year ago


Mount Sinai Cemetery Mortuary Chapel
Philadelphia, PA

The Mount Sinai Cemetery Mortuary Chapel in the Frankford section of Philadelphia was designed by Frank Furness of Furness, Evans & Co. in 1891. This project for the Jewish Mount Sinai Cemetery came about through Furness’s earlier work on the Rodef Shalom Synagogue (here, here, and here). 

From Philadelphia Preserved by Richard Webster:

N.E. corner Bridge and Cottage Sts. Rock-faced granite and brick with pecked and carved red terra cotta trim, approx 42’ (three-bay front) x 60’, one story, intersecting hipped and gable red tile roofs with hipped cross-gables and copper cornice, horseshoe-arch windows, semihexagonal side bay; three-aisle plan, exposed wooden trusses, rear vault.

The interiors, windows, chimneys, and finials have been altered since construction of the chapel in 1892. 

1 year ago