The Dream City, Paul V. Galvin 
Digital History Collection
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  THE ORNAMENTAL GERMAN GATES - The most beautiful piece of wrought-iron ever made fronted Columbia avenue for a space of one hundred and sixty-one feet, serving as a facade and disclosing the beauties of the Porcelain Porch within. When the Armbruster Brothers, of Frankfort-on-the-Main, set up this work in Berlin, its fame became so great that Emperor William II himself viewed it, and joined with the general praise of its excellence. The engraving practically describes the rococo and highly decorative character of the gates, the central one being the largest piece of artistic iron ever wrought. It stood forty feet high and twenty-two feet wide, and the gates that swung under the arch weighed eighteen tons. The side gates were thirty feet high and fifteen feet wide, and each pair weighed thirteen tons. For six months, one hundred and fifty of the most skillful workmen of the firm devoted all their time to hammering these complex forms out of bar iron. The central gate, of course, was the cynosure of all iron-workers, for they alone could attest the marvelous nature of the display. Bars and gratings which here look so delicate, were in themselves heavy and not easily moved. Wrought about them were mouldings and wainscotings, and over them a flowery arch. Fruit and leaves , geometrical scroll-work, and oriental traceries ran confusingly together, only to give, at the proper distance, a sense of perfect art and proportions.
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Digital History Collection
Page created: August 26, 1998