Born in Washington, DC, and educated at Howard University, where he received his B.S. in Architecture in 1932, J. Alonzo Plater worked for several DC architects before moving to the Philadelphia area. These included Robinson, Porter & Williams (1932-1934), Howard H. Mackey and R. C. Archer (1934-36). In 1937 he came to Philadelphia to work at the Frankford Arsenal, rising in the office to become chief of the Engineer and Planning Division. In 1947 he established his own office in Philadelphia at 1611 North Broad Street, but he also maintained an office in the District of Columbia, where in 1947 he and his mentor Howard H. Mackey founded Plater & Mackey. This short-lived firm appears to have been established in order to compete for the new Architecture and Engineering Building at Howard University, where Mackey directed the program in architecture.
Plater joined the AIA in 1948 and was a founder of the Philadelphia Chapter of the National Technical Association.
Sandra L. Tatman.
Clubs and Membership Organizations
- Pennsylvania Society of Architects
- American Institute of Architects (AIA)
- Philadelphia Chapter, AIA
- National Technical Association
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