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The first project recorded by the Philadelphia Real Estate Record and Builders Guide for the new firm of Sauer & Hahn is a Yiddish theater located at 5th and Locust streets, on the same side of the street as the cemetery for the Society of Friends. Although Sauer & Hahn would distinguish themselves chiefly as designers and engineers for commercial and industrial properties, as the Yiddish theater indicates, they did design a sprinkling of theater houses, including the new moving picture theaters that were becoming popular in the city (see the theater for the North Penn Amusement Co. at 2416-20 North 27th Street of 1910, and the J. Frederick Zimmerman theater at 42-48 Chelten Avenue of 1911). Their ties to Philadelphia's Jewish community also reaped a number of commissions, such as alterations to the Jewish Foster Home at Church Lane and Chew Street in the Germantown neighborhood (1911) and the Young Men's Hebrew Association Building at 1616 Master Street (1914-1915).

Sauer & Hahn represents the efforts of Andrew J. Sauer, trained at the Franklin Institute Drawing School and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, and Frank E. Hahn, who had received a degree in engineering from the University of Pennsylvania. Although roughly the same age as Hahn, Andrew J. Sauer had already been in practice for about six years and probably functioned as the senior partner in this arrangement, with Hahn chiefly responsible for the engineering and business concerns of the office. After Hahn left the office in 1915, Sauer established A. J. Sauer & Co. as a successor firm.

Written by Sandra L. Tatman.

 

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