Records of Howe, Manning & Almy, Inc. and the papers of Lois Lilley Howe, Eleanor Manning O'Connor, and Mary Almy


Records of Howe, Manning & Almy, Inc. and the papers of Lois Lilley Howe, Eleanor Manning O'Connor, and Mary Almy


The firm of Howe, Manning & Almy is believed to be the first architectural firm in Boston founded by women and the second in the United States. Lois Lilley Howe (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, SB 1890), whose commissions began in 1894, established her own firm in 1900 and asked Eleanor Manning (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, SB 1906), one of her draftsmen, to be her partner in 1913, creating the firm of Lois Lilley Howe & Manning. In 1926, another draftsman from the office, Mary Almy (Radcliffe College, 1905, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, SB 1922) became a partner, assuming responsibility for the business aspects of the firm. Manning focused on the technical architectural work and design problems, and Howe continued to concentrate on design. The firm dissolved in 1937 when Howe retired, and Manning and Almy started separate practices. The emphasis of the firm was on domestic architecture and the partners did both building and remodeling. They were interested in urban housing problems and worked with the Architects' Small House Service Bureau of Massachusetts and the Boston Housing Association throughout the 1920s and 1930s. They submitted small house designs to the Department of the Interior for the Subsistence Homestead Communities, remodeled apartments for the Lynn Slum Clearance Project, and developed housing in Mariemont, Ohio. Materials of the firm include correspondence, financial data, reports, specifications, photographs, blueprints, drawings, and research materials that document the firm's projects and commissions. The collection also includes personal papers of the three architects including illustrated travel diaries, watercolors, sketchbooks, and architecural scrapbooks. Records from Eleanor Manning O'Connor's private architectural work after 1937 and material from the Seventeen Associated Architects are included. There are a number of documents about the Howe family in the personal papers of Lois Lilley Howe.

25.0 cubic feet; (21 record cartons, 4 manuscript boxes, 1 half manuscript box, 5 flat storage boxes, 1 glass negative box, 1 roll, 54 oversize folders)

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Related Entities

There are 19 Entities related to this resource.

Simmons College (Boston, Mass.) (corporateBody)

Boston Society of Architects (corporateBody)

Almy, Mary, 1883-1953 (person)

Howe, Lois Lilley, 1864-1964 (person)

Architect, of Cambridge, Mass.; attended MIT School of Architecture, the only woman in a class of 65 males, completing the program in 1890. In 1893 opened what would soon become the only all-female architectural firm in Boston and in 1894 designed her first house, the Alfred C. Potter residence in Cambridge. Her firm expanded becoming successively Lois Lilley Howe & Manning in 1913 and Howe, Manning & Almy in 1926 as draftsmen Eleanor Manning and Mary Almy were taken on as partners. The ...

Manning, Eleanor, 1884-1973 (person)

Architects Small Housing Bureau of New England (corporateBody)

Architects' Small House Service Bureau of the United States (corporateBody)

Massachusetts Civic League. Housing Committee (corporateBody)

Massachusetts Federation of Planning Boards (corporateBody)

M.I.T. Women's Association (corporateBody)

Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Cheney Room (corporateBody)

Seventeen Associated Architects (Boston, Mass.) (corporateBody)

Emerson, William, 1873-1957 (person)

O'Connor, Johnson, 1891-1973 (person)

Housing Association of Metropolitan Boston (corporateBody)

President's Conference on Home Building and Home Ownership 1931 Washington, D.C. (corporateBody)

United States government conference on housing called by President Herbert Hoover. From the description of President's Conference on Home Building and Home Ownership records, 1931-1932. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 754867222 Historical Note. The Conference on Home Building and Home ownership was announced by President Hoover on August 30, 1930. It followed the White House Conference on Child Health and Protection as the...

National Housing Conference (U.S.) (corporateBody)

Howe, Manning & Almy (corporateBody)

Boston Housing Authority (corporateBody)

The Boston Housing Authority (BHA) was established by order of the Boston City Council on Oct. 1, 1935, pursuant to St 1935, c 449, s 5, which empowered cities and towns of Massachusetts to establish housing authorities. Such a body is responsible for providing decent, safe, and sanitary housing for families unable to afford housing without public subsidy and for clearing substandard, decadent, or blighted open areas under the provisions of MGLA c 121B. To carry out these responsibi...