By J. F. Pirro
From Thunderbird Lodge to Hedgerow Theatre to historic private homes, the late Wallingford native’s pioneering work can be seen throughout the borough.
George Thomas was a 25-year-old graduate student studying art history at the University of Pennsylvania when, in 1970, he spent $75 on thousands of glass plates and film negatives. It was to be his food money for the month, but he had a good feeling about his Freeman’s auction acquisition, which came wrapped in paper and manila envelopes from the office of William Lightfoot Price. “I only knew that he was a Philadelphia architect,” Thomas says now.
The purchase eventually led to a doctoral dissertation guided by a question: How could a designer who reshaped the architecture of his time suddenly
“Will invented what led into Art Deco,” says Thomas. “Everyone still calls it Art Deco, but it was actually Art Price.”