Birmingham Architecture & Design Collection
William T. Warren, 1877-1962

William T. Warren, 1877-1962
Family Papers
AR 1006

Biographical Information

Photograph of William T. Warren by J.F. Knox, undated. File #1006.5.55. Warren, William T. Family Papers. Birmingham Public Library, Department of Archives and Manuscripts.William Tillman Warren was born in Montgomery, Alabama, in 1877. He earned an engineering degree from Alabama Polytechnic Institute (Auburn University) in 1897 and a degree in architecture from Columbia University in 1902. Warren practiced with the New York firm of McKim, Meade & White until 1906. In 1907, Warren relocated to Birmingham where he practiced for the remainder of his career. In Birmingham, Warren had several successful partnerships including Warren and Welton (1906-1910), W.T. Warren (1911-1917), Warren and Knight (1917-1921), and the most prolific, Warren, Knight & Davis (1921-1961). The firm of Warren, Knight & Davis designed many downtown buildings and prominent private residences in Birmingham. The firm made significant contributions to the evolution of architecture and design in the City of Birmingham in the first half of the twentieth century. Warren and his wife, Dorothea Orr Warren, had two children, Dorothea (Dorothy) and William, Jr. (Bill).

Scope and Content

This collection includes the personal and business papers of William Tilman Warren, a prominent Birmingham architect, his wife Dorothea Orr Warren, and their two children Dorothea and William, Jr. Warren’s business correspondence traces his career as an architect beginning with his work in the firm of in the firm of Warren and Welton and ending with his most productive partnership of Warren, Knight & Davis. His personal papers include correspondence with family members, notes about family properties outside of Birmingham, poems written by Warren about his family members, clippings of current events of his day, notes about Warren’s involvement with community organizations such as “Birmingham’s Little Theater,” and the research materials for a book titled The Practical Dreamer that Dorothea Orr Warren wrote about John T. Milner, her grandfather and an early engineer and businessman that influenced the location and development of Birmingham. The collection also includes personal photographs and photographs of buildings in Birmingham and around the state.

Gift of William T. Warren, Jr.


Satterfield, Carolyn Green. Historic Sites of Jefferson County, Alabama. Birmingham, Alabama: Lowry Printing, 1985. Prepared for the Jefferson County Historical Commission.)

Schnorrenberg, John M. Remembered Past, Discovered Future: The Alabama Architecture of Warren Knight & Davis, 1906-1961. Catalogue of Exhibitions at Birmingham Museum of Art, Birmingham Public Library, and University of Alabama at Birmingham Visual Arts Gallery. Birmingham, Alabama: Birmingham Museum of Art, 1999.)

Photograph of William T. Warren by J.F. Knox, undated. File #1006.5.55. Warren, William T. Family Papers. Birmingham Public Library, Department of Archives and Manuscripts.
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