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Real estate record and builders' guide: v. 68, no. 1739: July 13, 1901

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July 13, 1901. RECORD ANP GUIDE. 33 BUsn^Ess Afto Themes of Gnti^l Iimfl^l, PRICE PER YEAR IN ADVANCE SIX DOLLARS. Published every Baturdav- TELEPHONE, CORTLANDT I37O. Communications should he addressed to C. W. aW^BBT, 14-16 Vesey Street. 7. T. UNDSEY, Business Manager. -Entered at the Post-Office at Neto York, N. 7.. as second-cJoss matter.' Vol. Lxvin. JULY 13, 1901. No. 1739. The Index to Volume LXVII of the Record and Guide, covering the period between January ist and June 301k, igoi, -will be ready for delivery July 20th. Price, $1. This Index in its enlarged form is now recognized as indispensable lo every one engaged or interested in real estate and building operations. It covers all transactions- deeds, mortgages, leases, auction sales, building plans Hied, etc. Orders for the Index should be sent at once to the oflice of publication, 14 and i& Vesey Street. FORCED liquidation caused the break In Stock Market prices of this week, and this was the inevitable result of the wild speculation of the Spring, witb its accompanying inflation of quo¬ tations. The question is, has liquidation run its course? The an¬ swer must be, apparently not. So long as quoted securities stand at prices which are unwarranted by intrinsic conditions, liquida¬ tion must continue and prices in our market still represent more than those conditions. This situa;tion is aggra^vated by the fact that there is practically no speculative commission business, or very little, and the seller when he offers his goods finds they are subjected to a close scrutiny which was not the case when Wall Street was full of rampant bulls. In endeavoring to fix a term for the downward movememt the range of advance has to be taken into account and a mean fixed accordingly. It must be remembered that the bull movement began in '96 when, for ex¬ ample, St. 'Paul was 60, and Atchison 8, since when these two stocks have sold at 188 and 91 severally. Ranges of comparative¬ ly equal extravagance can be found for almost everything on the list, and it follows that the reaction must be proportioned to the extravagance, whatever it may have been in each case. We are not saying tliat St. Paul will sell at 60 again, or Atchison at 8, because when those quotations were made the commercial and in¬ dustrial forces of the coTintry were paralyzed by the currency discussion and the fiscal position of the Nation itself was endan¬ gered. Such a terrifying factor is not likely to be encountered again in the situation,'which counts for considerable in theway of value. Reactions against overtrading on the bear side will count, too, for something, in the way of delay princip'ally; and so will the interested buying that comes in at Intervals, when the breaking goes too' fast and endangers credit in particular direc¬ tions, but the easy jubilant over-estimating of the recent past must be discounted. Speaking generally, it may be said that every fraction added to quotations since the close of January was undeserved or produced by special circumstances that no longer have weight. WHIIjE dreading the effects of the weather on tiis growing crops, tile farmer may find some consolation in the fact that everyone is now compelled to acknowledge tbat the pros¬ perity of the country still depends upon his efforts. iW© are still an agricultural people in spite of the foolish who were only the other day trying to prove that a crop failure lost its significance as the hammer had taken precedence ol the plough in the symbol¬ ism of national callings. Now, we see how dependent commerce and industry are upon agriculture, when the prospect of crop disas¬ ter in some western states is giving everyone such a scare as that from which we are now suffering. An article on another page, wtiicli shows how manufacturers and others await the returns from the harvest field before making their plans for the coming year, will prove enlightening and interesting to thoSe who deny this. The American farmer is helped, as it happens, by the Euro¬ pean crop reports, and, while he cannot rejoice In a community of calamity, at the same time, he cannot shut his eyes to the fact that the economic results in a measure will save him, or at least mitigate his loss. Doubtless, first reports of damage are exag¬ gerated, as they always are and that at the moment good newa has no influence anywhere; but, It has to be confessed that the crop outlook gives a more serious view tO' the situation abroad as it does to that at home. By reason of having experienced both boom and reaction before we did and capital becoming released from enterprise as a consequence, money is cheaper in Europe than here, but there is no present prospect of an improvement in business and the keen competition for any that offers makes the outsider's chances for participating therein less than ever. This is a point that ought not to be overlooked when considering the future of our highly-watered, labor-betroubled industrials. Napoleon Le Brun. ■^p- HAT must have been, on the whole, a very satisfa'ctory pro- ■^ fessional life that was closed, this last week, by the death of Napoleon Le Brun, at the age of eighty. The life was in fact im¬ portant enough to he called, without too much stretching of lan¬ guage, a "career." He had all his life been "in the movement." Thanks, perhaps, to his descendants and associates of a younger generation, he was never "out of it," even until the last, never a "back number," according to the disrespectful slang of the day. In fact, his distinction was that he was always very much "in it." That description does not seem to designate, seems even to ex¬ clude a man of strong convictions, and much more a man of posi¬ tive genius, but it does connote a man who, by sympathy and intel¬ ligence, must enjoy himself very much in his own lifetime, and may do very good work. The late James Renwick was such a man. He set no examples; he did not trouble anybody; he worked in the fashion of the day that was passing over him, without troubling himself to analyze it, much less reform it. "Well," as Carlyle says, "his lot was the peaceabler," and so was that of Mr. Le Brun. We do not know that he ever took part in the Gothic revival. Probably not, since his main work, when the Gothic revival wa» at its height, forty years ago, was the Italian Renaissance of the Catholic Cathedral in Philadelphia, a building which gave all the Goth'icists a pain, being, as it was and is, in what there is ot the most Italian Renaissance. But, with this exception, he took a hand in whatever was going. And he did it always with a cer¬ tain distinction, a certain selection, which makes one believe that he was not of French descent for nothing. He was a pupil of Thomas U, Walter, a fact which also does not go for nothing, seeing that Walter, the architect of the Girard College and of the extension of the United States Capitol, was in his turn a pupil of Strickland, who was a pupil of Latrobe. It is a pretty long and well-derived tradition, as our architecture goes, the best w6 have. It is a kind of guarantee that, whatever an architect does, he will not "kick oVer the traces." And, as we were saying, Mr. Le Brun took part in every architectural movement that was going in his time. Even in the Richardsonian Romanesque, for there stands, at the corner of 23d street and Lexington avenue, a little, cheap brick chapel, which is of the most Romanesque, has that careful detail which Richardson, rest his big, easy soul, never cared enough about, lacks that strong, single impulse which was all that Richardson did care about. It is not very interesting, except for the pains the designer evidently took in the execution of his terra cotta work, which accordingly came near tO' being a "rec¬ ord" for that time (about twenty years ago). But of the Ro¬ manesque spirit this huilding so carefully attentive to historical Romanesque detail, showed not the slightest trace. There is another product of Mr. Le Brun's professional labors in New York which is worthy of a higher praise. And we do not mean the Metropolitan Life Insurance Building in Madison square either, though that is a very conspicuous building and much better studied than is common with skyscrapers. The rela¬ tion of voids and solids in the basement is particularly taking and effective, to say nothing of the central court, by which. In photography, the building is best known, and which is in truth, an impressive example of sumptuousness. We mean the Home Life Insurance Building in Broadway, oppo'site City Hall Park. That design was only a summary, a compilation, but how intel¬ ligently it was done. It really showed the men from' whose work it was derived what they were really driving 'at, how the tall building must have its base shaft and capital, 'and how it was better for the total el¥ect that these main divisions should not be weakened by subdivision. It was, and we may 'almost say it is, long 'ago as it was built, the typical skyscraper, of the arbitrary and architectonic type, so much better did the architect know what the O'ther architects had been doing than they knew them¬ selves. We cannot praise so highly the work that Wr. Le Brun did as architect to the PIre Department. By the way the principal building, the "Headquarters," 'Nos. 157-159 Eiast 67th street, near Third avenue, is again Romanesque, and In a much freer Ro- m'anesque, an^ more suceessful than tb'e little brick chapel. Butth©