John Mead Howells

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The Daily News Building, on which Howells collaborated with Raymond Hood
The Engineering Building, as part of Pratt Institute's Engineering Quadrangle

John Mead Howells, FAIA (/ˈhəlz/; August 14, 1868 – September 22, 1959), was an American architect. Born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, the son of author William Dean Howells, he earned an undergraduate degree from Harvard University in 1891 and completed further architectural studies there in 1894 before studying at the École des Beaux-Arts, in Paris, where he earned a diploma in 1897. He returned to New York and founded the architectural firm Howell & Stokes with I.N. Stokes, who had also studied at the École. The partnership designed such works as St. Paul's Chapel at Columbia University; it ended in 1913. After 1913, Howell focused his practice on office buildings in the Art Deco style, many of which he completed with Raymond Hood, whom he had met during his time at the École. These projects include the Tribune Tower in Chicago and the Daily News Building and the Beekman (Panhellenic) Tower in New York City. Howells also designed the plan for theUniversity of Brussels in Belgium in 1922 at the request of U.S. Secretary of Commerce Herbert Hoover. Howells institutional works includes the Engineering Quadrangle at Pratt Institute built in phases from 1909-1928, Memorial Hall at Pratt Institute from 1927, and Willoughby Hall at Pratt Institute in 1957. Howells served as president of the Society of Beaux-Arts Architects and the Society of Architects Diplômes. He was elected to the National Institute of Arts and Letters, named a Chevalier by the French Legion of Honor and an officer of the Order of the Crown (Belgium), and served on the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts from 1933 to 1937. Howells wrote several books on architectural history.[1] In 1944 he was elected into the National Academy of Design as an Associate Academician.


  1. ^ Thomas E. Luebke, ed., Civic Art: A Centennial History of the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Commission of Fine Arts, 2013): Appendix B, p. 546.

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