Partner Anne Bruce Haldeman

Queer Places:
Haldeman and Leland, 600 S 4th St, Louisville, KY 40202
Puye, 3613 Glenview Ave, Glenview, KY 40025
4310 Glenview Ave, Glenview, KY 40025
Oakwood Cemetery Joliet, Will County, Illinois, USA

Meet Louise Leland, Kentucky's first female architect – Broken SidewalkLouise Leland (March 20, 1902 – September 9, 1956) was an architect.

Louise Leland was born in Springfield, Illinois, the daughter of Jerome Leland and Gertrude Akin. Jerome, a descendant of the Lelands connected with some of the country’s earliest examples of fine hotels (examples include: Metropolitan Hotel and Sturtevant House, New York City; Grand Union Hotel, Saratoga Springs; Occidental Hotel, San Francisco and Leland Hotel, Springfield), was himself employed in both farming and real estate. Gertrude was the daughter of ex-Attorney General Akin. The couple was divorced by 1909; Jerome stayed in Springfield, while Gertrude moved north to Chicago with their children, Edward and Louise. Gertrude worked as a social worker and she later traveled abroad in March of 1918 to both France and England in order to aid in the war effort, specifically YMCA’s Canteen Service. Louise was educated at Chicago Latin School for Girls, as well as Cottage School in Riverside, Illinois and Kemper Hall in Kenosha, WI. In 1919 she enrolled at Smith College in Northampton, MA. While at Smith she experienced the death of both her mother and her brother. Despite these heartbreaks, Louise maintained decent grades and an active schedule while at Smith. She was involved in numerous activities, perhaps most regularly with the All-Smith Baseball Team, of which she captained all four years. After Smith, Louise attended Cambridge School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture (today’s Harvard’s Graduate School of Design). In 1934 she applied to the Kentucky State Board of Architecture for admission, although she did not pass the examination until January 4, 1938. She became the state's first female registered architect and the only one until 1975.

Meet Louise Leland, Kentucky's first female architect – Broken Sidewalk
Louise (back row, second from right) pictured in her 1923 “All-Smith” team photo. (Smith College / archive.org)

Leland moved to Louisville in 1934 and teamed with classmate and landscape architect Anne Bruce Haldeman to form the firm Haldeman and Leland, with offices located in the Francis Building at 600 S. Fourth St. The two lived together in Glenview. Leland designed their longtime home—which they named Puye—in Glenview. Always in Glenview she designed the house of Ethel (Edie) Callahan. During WWII, Leland served as a tool designer in the engineering department at the Curtiss-Wright aircraft plant in Louisville, where she also earned a professional rating as a aeronautical engineer. The firm continued operation until Leland's death.


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