H. Vollweiler

H. Vollweiler

Henry Vollweiler (1853-c.1917-20) was a distinguished Brooklyn architect who designed many buildings in Brooklyn’s Eastern District in the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries.[[#_ftn1|[1]]] He was born in the village of Eppigen, in the Grand Duchy of Baden, Germany, in 1853. As a young man, he studied art and the technique of architectural drawing, and apprenticed under his stepfather, Herr Friedrich Beck, to learn the carpenter’s trade.[[#_ftn2|[2]]] From a young age, he showed a marked aptitude for design, and at the age of twenty, decided to further his education in the building profession. He studied at the Baugewerkschule in Stuttgart, Germany, where he was trained to be a building superintendent. He later studied architecture at the Polytechnicum in Karlsruhe.
Upon completing his training, Vollweiler worked in the village of Fussbach and the city of Kaiserslautern, supervising and directing the erection of government and bank buildings.[[#_ftn3|[3]]] One of his first commissions as an architect was the design of the Prince’s palace in Karlsruhe. He continued to work as an architect and draftsman until 1882, when he emigrated to the United States, hoping to find greater professional opportunities. After arriving in the United States, he continued to work as an architect and draftsman in his own practice in Montclair, New Jersey. He then moved to the Eastern District of Brooklyn, and began work in the office of prolific Brooklyn architect Theobald Engelhardt.[[#_ftn4|[4]]]
As his reputation among the builders and investors in the Eastern District grew, Vollweiler opened his own office at his residence on the northwest corner of Sumner Avenue and Broadway, in Bushwick. He became a successful designer and draftsman, and was responsible for many residential tenement buildings and rowhouses, as well as some commercial structures, throughout Queens and Brooklyn, but particularly in the Eastern District and Bushwick. Among his more notable commissions are the Wells & Zerweck Brewery complex in Ridgewood, the Grassman Building at Broadway and Lawton Street in Bushwick, and the Liederkranz Society Hall on Meserole Street at Manhattan Avenue (1900).[[#_ftn5|[5]]] Eighteen individual buildings within the Bushwick Avenue Study Area are attributed to him. William Debus, another local architect to whom several buildings in the Study Area are attributed, worked in his office as head designer.[[#_ftn6|[6]]]

List of projects

External links


[1] Biographical information about Henry Vollweiler is derived from Carl Wilhelm Schlegel, Schlegel’s American Families of German Ancestry in the United States, vol. 2 (New York: The American Historical Society, 1917)

[2] Schlegel, p. 91.

[3] Schlegel, p. 92.

[4] Ibid.

[5] Schlegel, p. 93.

[6] Francis, Dennis Steadman. Architects in Practice in New York City, 1840-1900. (New York: Committee for the Preservation of Architectural Records, 1979).