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Borden, Gail (09 November 1801–11 January 1874), surveyor and inventor, was born in Norwich, New York, the son of Gail Borden, a pioneer and landowner, and Philadelphia Wheeler. The Bordens moved at least twice in the early 1800s, first to Kennedy’s Ferry, Kentucky, which became Covington soon after their arrival, and then to New London, Indiana, in 1816, where Borden learned surveying. Borden attended school in Indiana during 1816 and 1817....

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Cook, Abner Hugh (15 March 1814–22 February 1884), architect and master builder, was born in Rowan County, North Carolina, the son of William Cook and Susanna Hill, farmers. Cook learned the building trades in rural North Carolina, then worked in Macon, Georgia, and Nashville, Tennessee. During his apprenticeship he was exposed to the vernacular version of the Federal style and to high style Greek Revival structures, including ...

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Samuel LeFrak. New York City, 1968. Courtesy of AP Images.

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LeFrak, Samuel J. (12 February 1918–16 April 2003), urban planner, builder, and architect, was born Samuel Jayson LeFrak in New York City, the son of Harry, a builder, and Sarah Schwartz LeFrak, a homemaker. LeFrak graduated from Erasmus Hall High School in Flatbush, Brooklyn, in 1936, and from the University of Maryland, College Park, in 1940. As a college student, he worked for his father, supervising the completion of his first building, a sixty‐family, sixteen‐story building in Brooklyn. Following his graduation from the university LeFrak married Ethel Stone; they had four children. LeFrak also took classes at Columbia University and Harvard Business School and during his lifetime received numerous honorary degrees....

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Pratt, Daniel (20 July 1799–13 May 1873), industrialist and community builder, was born in Temple, New Hampshire, the son of Edward Pratt and Asenath Flint, farmers. Pratt attended school until 1815, when he was apprenticed to carpenter John Putnam. With Putnam’s bankruptcy in 1819, Pratt followed the Yankee immigration to the South, spending two years in Savannah, Georgia, before moving to the state capital at Milledgeville, where he built a number of plantation houses and cotton barges. In 1827 Pratt married Esther Ticknor, with whom he had three children, of which only one lived to adulthood....