EASEMENTS: THE JEWELERS' BUILDING, 214-18 South 12th Street, Philadelphia
The latest historic property to be protected by a preservation easement donated to the Preservation Alliance for Greater Philadelphia is the Jewelers' Building on south 12th Street in Philadelphia. It was built in 1900 as jewelers' shops and stores. This property has now been converted to residential condominiums on the upper five floors, and a coffeehouse and bookstore at the ground level. It is part of the National Register Center City East Commercial Historic District.
The easement was donated by the condominium owners, including the principal developer of the rehabilitated property, Don Meginley, who is a past director of the Preservation Alliance. The preservation easement protects the historic appearance of the property in perpetuity and allows the easement donors to claim a charitable-gift tax deduction.
The Jewelers' Building was built as a six-story commercial building with architectural elements in the then-popular Colonial Revival style, most of which remain including ornate corbelled brickwork at the roofline, limestone keystones over the window openings, and a pair of metal-clad, stacked bay windows on the front façade. The mosaic-tile floor of the recessed entryway has a tiled "JB" monogram in the center indicating its original use as the Jewelers' Building.