Nineteenth-century Chicago architect John Root was a contemporary of Louis Sullivan’s, and was another force behind the development of the tall building.  Unfortunately he died young, at age 41 of pneumonia.

The north half of the 1891 Monadnock Building (foreground below) is one of very few surviving John Root designs.  It’s the last Chicago skyscraper with load-bearing walls, which are six feet thick at the base.  (The south building — background below — built immediately after the north half by Holabird & Roche, is steel-framed.)  While Root intended Egyptian-themed ornamentation, the building’s owners insisted on none, such that it prefigures the modern architecture that would arise early the next century.

The name comes from a mountain in southwest New Hampshire.  John Root’s father was friends with Daniel Webster, who lived near it; its name became eponymous for the geological term for a lone mountain.