Late Twentieth Century, 1946-1999

A small southern town becomes more cosmopolitan with the influx of professors and professionals.

Raleigh's historic properties from the second half of the twentieth century reflect the maturation of Modernism, an architectural movement that percolated in the United States in the early twentieth century. The style made a few appearances in Raleigh before World War II but is more strongly associated with the post-war period and the decades at the end of the twentieth century.

The most influential event on the architectural development of Raleigh in this period was the establishment of the School of Design at North Carolina State College in 1948. The school's first dean, Henry Kamphoefner, brought professors schooled in Modernism to the new architecture program. They built houses for themselves in the Modern mode throughout Raleigh and promoted Modernist styles for domestic, institutional, and commercial architecture. The faculty continued to practice architecture while they trained a new generation of local architects dedicated to Modernism.

G. Milton Small and Associates Office Building

Architect G. Milton Small designed this building to contain his own office. Small, who was a disciple of Modernist master Mies van der Rohe, incorporated several elements identified with Mies and his followers: the building elevated over a base, a…

(former) Branch Banking and Trust Building

When Wilson-based BB&T moved to Raleigh, it needed an architectural statement to underscore its ambition. Emery Roth & Sons, New York architects famous for the Pan Am Building in New York City, delivered a Manhattan-caliber skyscraper…

Medical Arts Building

The Medical Arts Building, attributed to prolific Raleigh architect F. Carter Williams, is an International Style office building with a steel frame, glass curtain walls, brick cladding, and a flat roof. The building reflects the growth of the Mary…

Occidental Life Insurance Building

The Occidental is among the first office buildings erected outside Raleigh's central business district in the vanguard of suburban development. Cameron Village, the first shopping center in the state, was an ambitious mixed-used development that…

J.S. Dorton Arena

The J. S. Dorton Arena features parabolic design that boldly combined architecture and engineering, earning the building its reputation as an exceptionally significant design. Polish architect Matthew Nowicki, who conceived the structural idea for…

Paul and Elsie Stahl House

Designed by local architect G Milton Small, a student of Mies van der Rohe, the Stahl House is an excellent example of a Contemporary Ranch style residence, as evidenced by its low-slung gable roof, post-and-beam construction, window walls, open…

G. Dewey and Elma Arndt House

Built in the early 1960s, this dramatic Modernist home is defined by its low, sweeping front gable deck roof that covers a recessed porch. Its post and beam structure conforms to the sloping site, with a one-story front elevation and a two-story rear…

Harwell Hamilton and Jean Bangs Harris House and Office

Harwell Hamilton Harris, an internationally known Modernist architect, designed this flat-roofed, stucco-clad house to include living quarters for himself and his wife, a studio for his architectural practice, and a rental apartment. Harris is known…

Philip Rothstein House

G. Milton Small found more inspiration from Ludwig Mies van der Rohe than from Frank Lloyd Wight. Working with a chic, opinionated client who wanted a "clean, crisp house," Small delivered an International Style gem loaded with function and…

Paul and Ellen Welles House

The Paul and Ellen Welles House was designed by Durham architect Kenneth McKoy, who graduated in 1950 as a member of the first graduating class of the School of Design, established at North Carolina State University under dean Henry Kamphoefner. The…

Matsumoto House

George Matsumoto built this dwelling for himself, pioneering the use of modular building materials in an attempt to control costs. The proportions, detailing, and materials are exceptional, and the house makes a less-than-ideal building site a…

Small House

Raleigh architect G. Milton Small designed this house as his own residence. It is a nearly square one-story frame house sited on a steep hillside in a bend on Lake Boone Trail. Small studied under the Modernist master Mies van der Rohe at the…

Ritcher House

George Matsumoto, a professor of architecture at NC State's School of Design, incorporated several of Frank Lloyd Wright's Usonian house ideas in his design for the Ritcher House: passive climate control, aesthetic use of common building…

Henry L. Kamphoefner House

N.C. State's School of Design Dean Henry Kamphoefner, working with architect and professor George Matsumoto, designed this house for his own family. An ardent admirer of Frank Lloyd Wright, Kamphoefner incorporated typical Wrightian features.…

Fadum House

The Fadum House, designed in 1949 and completed in 1950, is the first modern design privately executed in Raleigh. This was the first house in Wake County to use structural wood columns to support a double-cantilevered roof truss grid, which shelters…

Anna Riddick House

The Anna Riddick House is a distinctive mid-twentieth-century Georgian Revival-style residence designed for a single woman. New York architect William Dewey Foster worked closely with Anna Riddick to design the dwelling, constructed of bricks…

Owen and Dorothy Smith House

The Owen and Dorothy Smith House is significant for its Modernist architectural design. Architect Owen Smith’s remarkable 74-year career in architecture and related building trades began in1938 with his graduation from North Carolina State College…