WHITE, STANFORD. (1853-1906). American architect and designer. TLS. (“Stanford White”). 1½pp. 4to. New York, November 9, 1899. On McKim, Mead & White letterhead. To HENRY MACCRACKEN (1840-1918), chancellor of New York University.
“I was awaiting the result of an experiment in lighting in the well of the staircase of the Hon. Wm. C. Whitney’s house before answering you definitely about the lighting of the dome. I fear, in fact, am certain, that the standards on the desks you speak of would give to the interior of the library too much the effect of a bank or life insurance office. The character of the building is so monumental, that I am sure that the treatment of the lighting should be both monumental and artistic. Since electricity all kinds of new methods of lighting rooms have been experimented with. I am sure that no-one has experimented in this matter more than we have. The result in large rooms has certainly proved that no method of light is equal in effect to that of a bunch of lights held in space, illuminating both the floors the side walls and the roof. Lighting from too high a point has proven to be very defective, casting very bad shadows and requiring too much light; that is, in order to get the proper light on the floor, a much too great amount of light was found necessary above.