684 North Broad Street
|This is it. Image from Google.|
The American Trust Loan and Guaranteed Investment Company began in 1886 with $250,000 and by 1890 had built and occupied this Ultra-Temple of Triple Cocks. It's North Broad location was intended to serve the richest new-money millionaires in America, most of which lived a few blocks away. The bank boasted 1500 safe deposit boxes and 24-hour guard duty. This was the kind of place you would put your family heirlooms so that your great-grandkids could withdraw them. The building was designed by Chancellors of Badass and Furness proteges Louis Carter Baker and Elijah James Dallett.
|Look at this fucking thing! It's awesome! 1890 or 91.|
|There it is on the left in 1892. The construction site for what we now call the Divine Lorraine is on the right.|
|1927. Only 37 years after being built, the grand entrance was GONE.|
|Already holding up a billboard by 1948.|
Improvements on North Broad only a few blocks south (600, 640, State Building Condos) are going to bring the old American Trust building to it's breaking point. Will future developers try to restore it or will they just say "fuck it" and make a pile of money off the big billboard and storefronts like the current owners/slumlords do? If North Broad is ever going to truly improve like we've all been told, this beast and buildings like it must either be restored or die.
|August 1891, just in case you need a reference for your restoration, future rich-ass developer!|