This elevator lintel was designed by Louis Sullivan for the Chicago Stock Exchange Building at 30 North LaSalle Street, completed in 1894. When the building was demolished in 1972, the lintel was saved and later given to the Chicago Historical Society by Lawrence Booth.
This elevator lintel from the Chicago Stock Exchange Building reflects important aspects of Chicago's architectural and economic histories. Louis Sullivan and Dankmar Adler were important contributors to a pioneering architectural style called the First Chicago School, which combined intricate organic designs with modern forms and materials. The Chicago Stock Exchange Building, finished in 1894, is considered one of the best examples of Sullivan's distinctive organic ornamentation. When the building was destroyed in 1972 the trading room was preserved at the Art Institute of Chicago. The Chicago Stock Exchange was founded in 1882, and traders exchanged stocks and bonds for utility, banking and railroad companies as the city grew rapidly through the early twentieth century.