Historical Architect

Bernard Ralph Maybeck

Bernard Ralph Maybeck was born on February 7th, 1862 in New York City. At the age of 30 he moved to Berkeley, California and became an instructor of engineering drawing at University of California, Berkeley and was a mentor to many California architects such as Julia Morgan and William Wurster. In 1951, he received the Gold Medal of the American Institute of Architects. Maybeck produced works in Mission style, mission revival style, gothic revival, arts and crafts style, and beaux-arts classicism. It is said that “while working in the office of A. Page Brown in San Francisco, Maybeck probably contributed to the Mission Style California Building at the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago and the first Mission Style chair, designed for the San Francisco Swedenborgian Church.” Maybeck oversaw the building of a number of now “Historically Significant” places such as the First Church of Christ, Scientist in Berkeley, California. The First Church of Christ, Scientist was designated at a National Historic Landmark in 1910. Maybeck continued to oversee and create historic building such as the Maybeck Recital Hall in Berkeley, Palace of Fine Arts in San Francisco, and a lumberman’s lodge called the “House of Hoo Hoo” which was made of “little more than rough-barked tree trunks arranged in delicate harmony.” Maybeck created the Family Service Agency of San Francisco and a residential project in the hills of Berkeley, California known as La Loma Park. All over the bay area, his works attempted to exhibit his two principles: “1.) the primacy of the landscape-geology, flora and fauna were not to be subdued by architecture so much as enhanced by architecture 2.) Roads should pattern the existing grade and not be imposed upon it.” Bernard Ralph Maybeck died in 1957 and was buried in Mountain View Cemetery in Oakland, California.

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Yesenia Checa, “Historical Architect,” Street Stories: Oakland, accessed October 16, 2018, http://streetstoriesoakland.com/items/show/115.
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