OFFICE AT 301 WASHINGTON
Alexander Girard’s redesign of the nineteenth century facade.
Alexander Girard designed these numbers in brass for the entrance vestibule.
Mr. Miller’s desk. Photo by Mike Wolanin, The Republic Newspaper
301 Washington Street, Columbus, Indiana – the office used by J.Irwin Miller.
The Columbus landmark at 301 Washington Street houses the second-story office of J. Irwin Miller, who was the President and Chairman of Cummins Engine Company, President of Irwin Union Bank, and President of the Irwin-Sweeney-Miller Foundation, as well as being involved with many other business interests and national associations.
Mr. Miller’s private office features a built-in desk and credenza, a horizontal wood wall accent with storage behind, a hidden television set, and a recessed wall clock. The office chairs were custom-produced with atypical bronze bases by furniture maker Herman Miller.
In 2011, Cummins purchased the building and renovated the interiors for additional downtown office space; however, the first floor entry and second floor private office of J. Irwin Miller have been preserved and are accessible for special public tours through the Columbus Area Visitors Center.
The Victorian building was originally built in 1848 and repurposed in 1881 by Joseph Irwin, and became known as Irwin’s Bank.
On Alexander Girard
Alexander Girard, the interior designer for the Miller House, was also an architect who was responsible for the facade renovation and interior design of 301 Washington. The exterior includes a recessed entry with white ceramic tile walls, globe light fixtures in the coffered ceiling, and a distinctive, projecting gold entry vestibule with side doors.
Simplicity of design is reflected in the remodeled interiors that feature rounded corners, clean lines and attention to details, such as light switches that are hidden behind curtains. The second floor offices showcase strong lines and subtle colors. The ceilings are a custom egg crate with uniform lighting, and the carpet was custom designed with a linear pattern. The doors are sliding wood panels. A custom open screen separates the stairs and the second floor reception area.
Take a tour
Tours are available of the office at 301, look for the Downtown Landmarks Walking Tour
- The Miller House and Garden (no link yet)
- The Cummins Foundation Architecture Program (no link yet)
- See more photos of 301 Washington on Pinterest
Portrait of a leader (3:32)
The impact of J. Irwin Miller (2:22)
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