Praetorian Building Praetorian Building Praetorian Building Praetorian Building Praetorian Building

Praetorian Building

Address: 1607 Main Street
Architect: Clarence C. Bulger of C. W. Bulger & Son, Architects
Year Built: 1909

This 14-story neoclassical style building was the West's first "skyscraper" and was complete with gray granite pillars and terra cotta columns. It was built for the Praetorian Order, a fraternal organization that specialized in insurance and named after the personal guards of Roman emperors until 312 AD.

The Praetorian Mutual Life Insurance Co. hired Grayson Gill, Inc., to expand and modernize the building in 1960, including changing the façade to a metal skin painted in Praetorian yellow.

The building closed in 1993. 3J Development of California bought it in 2005 with plans to renovate to the original exterior and turn it into loft apartments. Although the builidng has yet to be converted, Lockey Capital purchased it in 2007 with a renewed interest in its redevelopment.

For More Information:

Resources at the Dallas Public Library, 7th Floor:
Vertical Files:
  • Buildings -- Praetorian
  • Business & Industry -- Praetorian Mutual Life Insurance
  • Dallas. September 1923, p. 13.
  • Please contact department to view additional photographs.

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Last revised on August 8, 2007