Signature of Architect Thomas R. Kimball
(Walker, Kimball & Best; Kimball; Kimball & Steele)
Thomas Rogers Kimball (1862-1934) was born in Linwood, Ohio, and he attended the University of Nebraska and Coles Art School in Boston.1 He studied architecture at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1884-1887), and then he studied painting in Paris. By 1891, he was practicing in the Boston architectural firm Walker, Kimball & Best, and by 1894, they moved him to Omaha. In 1899, he began his solo practice, and then in 1928 he was in partnership with William L. Steele of Sioux City.
By 1901, Kimball was listed as one of the three invited non-resident architects for the commission of the Rosenberg Library in Galveston, Texas. (Not a Carnegie library.)2 Although Kimball was working on the national market, his only accepted Iowa commission was from Carroll (1903).
1Shank, Wesley I. Iowa’s Historic Architects: A Biographical Dictionary. Iowa City: U of I Press, 1999, pages 197-198.
2Soule, Charles C. “Modern Architectural Buildings.” The Architectural Review, v.IX, no. 1, January 1902, page 7, and pages 16-19. The article was a commentary on the effectiveness of the advertisement for the bids for the Galveston Public Library. The elevations and first floor plans were provided for three non-resident architects. While Kimball’s plans were not the accepted design, they were included as an example of the competition process.