William Randolph Hearst tapped Julia Morgan to help him build a Mediterranean Revival palace on a hilltop in the town of San Simeon. (Francine Orr/L.A. Times via Getty Images)
Julia Morgan, California’s trailblazing female architect
Julia Morgan, born in Oakland in 1872, was the first woman licensed to practice architecture in California. She designed more than 700 buildings of almost every type, including one of California’s grandest structures: Hearst Castle.
By the time of her death in 1957, her Beaux-Arts background was being overshadowed by the rise of Modernism. But reappraisals of her work have placed her among the greatest American architects. In 2014, the American Institute of Architects posthumously awarded Morgan its Gold Medal, one of the profession’s highest honors. She’s the first woman to receive it.
Below, see a selection of archival photos of Julia Morgan.
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