Monday, July 24, 2017

Philip McDuffie House (1922) Hentz, Reid & Adler, a "Neel Reid" Part 1 of ?

If Neel Reid himself walked though the front door of 7 Cherokee today, he'd likely say, "You haven't changed this foyer in 90 years! Let's get to work." That's what I think anyway.

The new owners are renovating and adding on. They are removing some of the fancy woodwork in the public rooms. "Fancy?" I really mean HEROIC. Are they ruining a "Neel Reid?" Someone said Yong Pak and Pak Heydt & Associates will be working on it. Take comfort.

It's taken me two weeks to publish a few pictures with captions. How to start when it's a legend? I don't know the names of styles or design details. How much of this did Neel Reid personally design? Did he set foot inside once it was done or decorated? How much has changed in the last 90 years?

My pictures and videos are so lame in telling you about the house but I'll show you a few in the blog. Here are links to my 7 Cherokee pictures in Flickr, my four 7 Cherokee videos in YouTube and a nice biography of Philip McDuffie from Buckhead Heritage. Phillip McDuffie developed Garden Hills among other things.

I don't get invited to these places so I follow estate sales. Once in a while I get lucky, this one thanks to VT Estate Sales.

This is as close can you get without an invitation. 8,562 square feet on 4 acres. My impression is the "whole" rather than the parts, a single composition.

Peachtree Heights West, has been of Atlanta's prestigious neighborhoods for 90 years. There's a nest of Neel Reid's (and more) surrounding the intersection of Andrews and Cherokee.

There's the gate. Looks like money wasn't the issue.

I got stuck at the gate wondering if I could process the house.

Gate details. Original? Neel Reid? James Means? There are many more pineapples and lanterns and lamps ahead.


The triple double-windows to the left are the front of the narrow end of the living-room / library. Not a weed in the lawns, the gardens, or the driveway.

Fancy balustraded wall and steps, fancy for the cars.

Even the tire stops are fancy.

Here you go. My long eye says: symmetrical, balanced, harmonious. My close eye wonders: how many design decisions, how many measurements to make harmony? How many budget decisions, value engineering? Do people live here, have consulate parties and debutante receptions? All and more I think.

I felt more important than intimidated. Did the medallions, niches and urns have to be just so?

I've got to stop here for now. Let me tease you with one picture from the inside.

This would be the dining room.


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