Monday, November 8, 2010

First Here Volume Three - chapter excerpt

Pigott building reached 210 feet into the skyscape

Built in 1929 for $1,000,000, the Pigott building was the first skyscraper in Hamilton and one of the first in Ontario. Hamilton architects Bernard and Fred Prack used Art Deco/Gothic Revival style (which was popular for a short time in New York) to make this building unique. It was called the most beautiful building in Hamilton and the most interesting in the province. Flanked by the Sun Life Building, its strong vertical lines, elongated middle and stacked segments drew viewers’ eyes upward. It reached a height of 210 feet and had 18-storeys above the pavement.

The latest and most sophisticated methods of construction were used by the Pigott Construction Co. Parts for the building were brought from all over the world. Glass came from Belgium while steel window frames were bought in England. Many of the other parts came from across Canada. The exterior was decorated with tyndall limestone sheathing which covered the steel skeleton. The interior was richly decorated in the traditional manner with marble and fine tiles. The lobby was painted by church decorators using the colours red, blue, and gold. Stained glass windows were installed which depicted scenes of interest relating to the building. Searchlights, which revolved every 30 seconds, were installed on the rooftop to notify people of its presence as far as 80 miles away with its 2-million candle beam.

To pre-order your copy of First Here Volume Three, please visit our website at