Maxwell Levinson fonds

Maxwell Levinson fonds

Part of


  • Maxwell Levinson (creator)
  • Maxwell Levinson (archive creator)


Maxwell Levinson fonds

Dates of creation



  • archives

Level of archival description


Extent and Medium

  • Approximately 834 photographic materials
  • 60 serials
  • 40 reprographic copies
  • 29 drawings
  • 11 ephemera
  • 9 books
  • Approximately 3.64 l.m. of textual records

Scope and Content

The fonds illustrates primarily the activities of Maxwell Levinson as editor of T-Square Club Journal, T-Square, Shelter and USA Tomorrow. It documents the various aspects of the publication of these magazines. It includes editorial, production and promotional material as well as documentation and research files. The fonds also contains records pertaining to the professional practice of Maxwell Levinson as architect and city planning consultant.

The fonds includes correspondence, manuscripts, photographs, books, news clippings, brochures, trade catalogues and drawings. Most of the fonds consists of editorial, production and promotional material for the magazines. The documents cover the period from 1926 to 1990.

Reference Number



The documents are classified into three series, in accordance with their original arrangement:

1. T-Square and Shelter records

2. USA Tomorrow records

3. Professional records

The inventory describes files and other documents within the series and subseries of the fonds. The files are arranged alphabetically and the periodicals and books are arranged chronologically.

Biographical notes


Philadelphia, United States, 8 February 1912 -

Maxwell Levinson was born on February 8, 1912, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in architecture from the University of Pennsylvania in 1932 and a Bachelor of Science degree in architectural engineering from the New York University in 1936. He also studied at the New York School for Social Research in 1942 and the Beaux Arts Institute of Design.

Following his graduation in 1932, he worked as senior architects aid for the Department of City Transit of Philadelphia. He was the housing economist for the Pennsylvania State Planning Board for two years and, in 1935, he became the head of Land Planning for the City Planning Commission of Philadelphia. In 1937, he was named chief engineer and architect for the Twentieth Century Building Co. of Detroit. From 1944 to 1949, he was architect and designer for Raymond Loewy Associates, in charge of city planning studies in the downtown area of St. Paul, Minnesota. He became the assistant city architect for the City of Philadelphia, from 1949 to 1953.

Maxwell Levinson has published journals and magazines dealing with architecture, housing, urban renewal and city planning. He was the editor of T-Square Club Journal (1930-1931), the official organ of the T-Square Club of Philadelphia, which became

T-Square (1932). He left the Philadelphia club taking the journal with him, changed its name to Shelter (1932), and continued publishing it for a year more. In 1938, he published the new Shelter (1938-1939), with Richard J. Neutra as his associate editor and some contributing editors including Frank Lloyd Wright, Walter Gropius and Richard Buckminster Fuller. In 1953, he became editor of USA Tomorrow magazine.

In the course of his career, he has been a consultant in housing and city planning for communities and cities in United States and in Canada. He has also worked for architectural, engineering and city planning firms.

Maxwell Levinson was a member of several professional associations, notably the American Society of Planning Officials, the National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials, the National Institute of Architectural Education, and the American Society of Military Engineers.

Conditions governing access

  • The Maxwell Levision fonds is held at the Canadian Centre for Architecture and is available for consultation.

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

  • The fonds is composed of two acquisitions. The first one in 1990 was a donation of Maxwell Levinson and the second one in 1997 is a purchase from Robert Langmuir.

Archivist's note

  • The Maxwell Levinson fonds was originally processed and described by Mourade Dièye Gueye in 1997. In 2008, the original finding aid was modified, by Alexis Lenk, in order to conform to updated documentation procedures.

Language of material

The documents in the archive are in English.

Related units of description

  • The CCA Library holds a collection of about 300 publications related to the Maxwell Levinson fonds. This collection consists mostly of reports, prospectus and pamphlets on public housing, urban renewal and city planning, published by federal and local authorities in the United States.

General note

  • The descriptive notice has been written according to the Rules for Archival Description (RAD) of the Canadian Council of Archives.

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