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The Chrysler Building

The competitive climate of 1920s Manhattan drove the creation of this building, which ultimately surpassed even the Eiffel Tower in height. William Van Alen made it distinctive through inventively applied Art Deco design, using machine-age motifs such as hubcaps and radiator caps, and American eagle heads in place of traditional gargoyles.

Picturing America has been made possible in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities: Because democracy demands wisdom.
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