Theobold Engelhardt was one of the greatest architects of North Brooklyn. Many of his structures survive and they are elegant old jewels. He was born in Brooklyn in 1851 to German parents who immigrated to America. He received his early education at the Williamsburgh Turn Verein school and later received a certificate in Architectural Drawing from Cooper Union.
Engelhardt worked in the office of his father Philip – a successful carpenter and builder – until Philip retired in 1877, at which time the younger Engelhardt opened his own architectural practice. Philip Engelhardt is credited with having built the original school building of the Williamsburgh Turn Verein, as well as a number of brewery-related buildings.
Theobald began his career in Bushwick, originally at 14 Fayette Street and later at 906 Broadway (in a building that he designed), and eventually worked on buildings for more than ten different breweries, including the William Ulmer Brewery, a designated New York City Landmark.
Engelhardt worked in various styles, including Gothic Revival, American Round-Arched, and Queen Anne, designing mansions, houses, tenements, factories, banks, and churches, many of which were located in Brooklyn’s Eastern District.
His works in Greenpoint include St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church (1891) at 152-157 Milton Street, the Greenpoint Home for the Aged (1886-87) at 137 Oak Street, and the houses at 122 and 124 Milton Street (1889) and 60-64 Kent Street in the Eberhardt Faber Pencil Company Historic District
He designed the former Maison au Candy Company (1885, reconstructed 1970s), now the Cadman Plaza Artists Houses at 22 Henry Street in the Brooklyn Heights Historic District, a. Engelhardt also designed the Eastern District Turnverein at Bushwick and Gates Avenues (1902), the clubhouse and addition for the Arion Singing Society (1886 and 1902) at 27 Arion Place, and St. Mark’s Evangelical Lutheran German church and school (c.1890) at 626 Bushwick Avenue.
During a career spanning forty-five years of his professional activities, Engelhardt designed and constructed many of the largest manufacturing and commercial buildings in the city of Brooklyn, as well as a number of hospitals and dispensary buildings, residences and modern homes,”22 many of which remain throughout the Eastern District.