Despite a tragically short career, Neel Reid (1885-1926) is one
of Atlanta's most beloved architects. Many of the most magnificent homes he designed are
in Buckhead. From classical to Tudor to Georgian, they reflect the beaux-art tradition and
his love of European style.
Reid came to Atlanta from Macon, Georgia, in 1904 to work in the
office of architect Willis Franklin Denney. With his future partner, Hal Hentz, Reid then
went to Columbia Universitys School of Architecture, where he studied with New York
beaux-arts architect Charles McKim, and from there to the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris.
Both men returned to Atlanta in 1909, and from 1909 until 1912, they practiced as Hentz
and Reid. From 1913 until 1926, the firm consisted of Hentz, Reid, Rudolph Sartorius Adler
and Philip Trammel Shutze.
Strongly influenced by the American Renaissance, a movement that
started with the American centennial in 1876 and that celebrated the arts of early
America, Hentz and Reid (later Hentz, Adler and Shutze) went on to design some of the
finest houses ever built in Georgia. And on the way, their firm was a spawning ground for
the Georgia School of Classicists.
Reid died from a brain tumor in 1926 at the age of 41.
The Georgia Trust has recently published a new book on Reid's
work: "J. Neel Reid, Architect of Hentz, Reid & Adler and the Georgia
School of Classicists," by William R. Mitchell Jr. with photos by James R.
Lockhart. 250 pages. $50. It can be obtained by contacting the Georgia Trust for Historic
Preservation, 1516 Peachtree St., Atlanta, GA 30309, phone (404) 881-9980 or email
Neel Reid houses in Buckhead include: