Archive for the ‘Stadtkrone’ Category


Big John Hancock

Many of you have written in to ask if the John Hancock, is really our stadtkrone, our city crown, as I said it was a couple of days ago. Some asked, wouldn’t it be more appropriate for a church to be our crowning glory?

As in for example this photo that just happened to be in this week’s New York Times.

Churches certainly help people prepare for heaven, and have for ages;

but these days life insurance companies such as John Hancock do that too. (Sure seems lucrative!)

So chez nous,

Big John towers over even our churches and palaces. Here, St. James Cathedral and the newly-cleaned Nickerson Mansion.

Now, since I first posted on the flat white line atop the Hancock, I’ve become, shall we say, obsessed with it.

A la Robert Delaunay and the Eiffel Tower.

Here’s a couple of shots I took tonight – all with my camera phone! –

of the white line
high above us,
that demarcates
earth and heaven.

But back at Erie and Wabash, this door opens on a real estate office trying to sell you and me this:

If it goes up, would you consider the Calatrava our neuvo stadtkrone?

-Don Edwardo

What’s a “Dear John” letter? Click here.


Our City’s Crowning Glory
our Stadtkrone!

Beautiful reflection the other night.
I kept walking, the sun of course went down,
and you know what happens next,

the light atop the Hancock comes on.

And I started thinking, for the first time, how that horizontal white stripe atop the Hancock is like the prairie. It’s flat and horizontal.

So, for example, if we were in the Rocky Mountains would the/should the building have a jagged white line on top, in the shape of an “M” ? What would that be like?

I like what we have. It always seemed to me like a stylized snow cap on top of a mountain. Now I also like the prairie horizontality to it. And of course, it’s Modernism’s preference for flat tops!

I started wondering if it’s the only “city crown” that’s flat.

It is our stadtkrone, isn’t it? Our city – crown.

Many cities have them. Look at this one, though I can’t tell you where it’s from.

Hm. Only thing missing is the white light on top!

Bye-bye, gotta go.

xxx, Edwardo

(“xxx?” Think Hancock!)