The Architecture of the American City and Suburb, 1885–1915
Since building construction is so vitally dependent on periods of strong economic growth, the course of development of American architecture has often been shifted by strong economic and political changes. In the economic and business sphere, the years from 1885 to 1915 were similarly marked by growing consolidation and the application of a controlling discipline so as to achieve economy of effort and optimum profits. Although architecture was still almost exclusively a male profession in the 1890s, women architects began to make themselves known in America. A number of women also were becoming practicing architects, overcoming great resistance from professional male architects. Among the first was Louise Blanchard Bethune. The most successful of this generation of women architects was Julia Morgan. A native of San Francisco, small of stature, and quiet, she was the first woman to earn an engineering degree at the University of California, Berkeley, in 1894.