Monday, September 15, 2008


Part I: The Queen’s Dictionary of Architectural Terms

‘Bau’ is the German word for building. So in honor of Oktoberfest Zinzinnati (September 20 & 21), Queen City Survey is looking at some Germanic influences on Cincinnati, its history, and its built environment in a week-long series we are calling Okto'BAU'fest!


Noun: The German term for timber-framed house. Half-timbered construction has been a common building tradition in Europe for centuries. Wood posts and beams are constructed to form the supporting structure and the space between the vertical timbers are filled with either stone, brick, or a construction method called wattle and daub where a wood lattice is formed (wattle) and covered in a mixture of usually water, soil, clay, and straw (daub).

Willis Kemper House (1895)
2206 Upland Place
Architect: Attributed to Lucian Plympton

‘Planet Dance’ Building
2230 Gilbert AvenueI do not know the architect nor the date of construction.

In modern buildings the post and beams are decorative and non-loadbearing, but the visual effect is the same. More examples of Fachwerk will be seen in upcoming Okto‘BAU’fest! posts. Which is why this post leads us off.

Next – Part II: Architect Emil Rueckert

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