Joseph C. Hoxie was born in Rhode Island, trained to the building trade in Connecticut, and by 1840 was working in Hoboken, NJ. Relocating to the Philadelphia area, he formed a partnership with his brother-in-law, Stephen Decatur Button in 1848. This formal relationship continued until around 1852, when it was dissolved by mutual agreement, although the former partners continued to work together on various projects to the end of Hoxie's life. For the years of their partnership it is difficult to determine which of the architects was primarily responsible for each of the commissions documented to the firm. In 1992 Jefferson Moak, former archivist for the City of Philadelphia, discovered a 125-page file for a legal case in equity (Common Pleas Court, June Term, 1854, Case 28) between N. G. Starkweather and Hoxie. According to the materials in the case file, Starkweather first went to work for Hoxie in November 1852 and was made a partner in 1854. Soon, however, strife entered the partnership, and by July 1854 it was dissolved. In August 1854 this case was filed in an effort to divide the assets of the partnership -- although this would not be resolved until 1858. After Hoxie returned to independent practice, however, he appears to have made a particular specialty of railroad stations and churches. The Italianate Harrisburg Station (1857, demolished 1877) and the Arch Street Presbyterian Church (1853-57) are probably the best examples of his efforts with both of these building types. The Ebenezer Maxwell house (1859), now a museum in the Germantown area of Philadelphia, has often been attributed to Hoxie.
Roger W. Moss, and
Sandra L. Tatman.
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