Alexander Jackson Davis

Alexander Jackson Davis

Born Jul 24, 1803

Alexander Jackson Davis, or A. J. Davis, was one of the most successful and influential American architects of his generation, in particular his association with the Gothic Revival style.

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1803 Birth Born on July 24, 1803.


1818 14 Years Old In 1818, Davis went to Alexandria, Virginia, to learn the printing trade from a half-brother. … Read More


1826 22 Years Old 1 More Event
Dropping out of school, he became a respectable lithographer and from 1826 he worked as a draftsman for Josiah R. Brady, a New York architect who was an early exponent of the Gothic revival style: Brady's Gothic 1824 St. Luke's Episcopal Church is the oldest surviving structure in Rochester, New York. … Read More
1829 25 Years Old From 1829, in partnership with Town, Davis formed the first recognizably modern architectural office and designed many late Classical buildings, including some of public prominence. … Read More
1831 27 Years Old In 1831, he was elected an associate member of the National Academy.


1835 31 Years Old From 1835, Davis began work on his own on Rural Residences, his only publication, the first pattern book for picturesque residences in a domesticated Gothic Revival taste, which could be executed in carpentry, and also containing the first of the Italianate style "Tuscan" villas, flat-roofed with wide overhanging eaves and picturesque corner towers.
1837 33 Years Old Unfortunately the Panic of 1837 cut short his plans for a series of like volumes, but Davis soon formed a partnership with Andrew Jackson Downing, illustrating his widely read books. … Read More


1845 41 Years Old Two smaller but well known structures designed by Davis include one built for John Cox Stevens in 1845; Stevens was the first Commodore of New York Yacht Club and the small Carpenter Gothic building on his property near Hoboken was given to NYYC to be used as its first clubhouse. … Read More
1849 45 Years Old Davis built a similar pavilion for his colleague and fellow NYYC founder, John Clarkson Jay, on Jay's Hudson River waterfront property in Rye, New York, in 1849. … Read More
1851 47 Years Old In 1851, Davis completed Winyah Park, one of approximately eighteen or more Italianate houses he designed in the 1850s. … Read More
1853 49 Years Old 1 More Event
For this design Davis won the first architectural prize at the New York World's Fair of 1853–54.


1857 53 Years Old Davis was invited to become a member of the American Institute of Architects shortly after its founding in 1857. … Read More
1861 57 Years Old With the onset of Civil War in 1861, patronage in house building dried up, and after the war, new styles unsympathetic to Davis's nature were in vogue.


1867 63 Years Old In 1867, he designed the Hurst-Pierrepont Estate.
1878 74 Years Old In 1878, Davis closed his office, where he had usually both lived and worked. … Read More
1890 87 Years Old In 1890, the artist Frederic Remington purchased one of these cottages from which he created his estate "Endion", which served as the studio for most of his artistic career. … Read More
1892 89 Years Old Died on January 14, 1892.
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