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Virginia Department of Historic Resources

127-0163 Donnan-Asher Iron-Front Building

Donnan-Asher Iron-Front Building
*Click on image to enlarge.

For additional information, read the Nomination Form PDF

VLR Listing Date 12/02/1969

NRHP Listing Date 02/26/1970

NPS property number 70000879

Built in 1866 as part of the reconstruction of Richmond’s commercial area after the Evacuation Fire of 1865, this exuberant building has one of only three completely cast-iron facades remaining in the city. It was built for the Donnan brothers, hardware merchants. The iron facade was popular at the time because it could provide maximum elaboration with minimal expense and construction time. Inspired by the Renaissance palaces of Venice, most of the iron facades were rendered in a rich Italianate style. The ironwork on this facade is attributed to George H. Johnson, an English architect who came to this country in 1851. The iron was produced by Hayward Bartlett & Co. of Baltimore, by whom Johnson was employed at the time. A 1960s shop front mars the otherwise unaltered facade.


Abbreviations:
VLR: Virginia Landmarks Register
NPS: National Park Service
NRHP: National Register of Historic Places
NHL: National Historic Landmark

Updated April 4, 2018