Seat of Power

Let's file this thought-provoking piece under 'Who Knew?'. I for one have been woefully ignorant of the telltale nature of the toilet seat and the pivotal role it plays in commercial real estate and corporate politics! To believe this 1930s ad, the washroom accessory is both status symbol and architectural asset, found in the the most prestigious, progressive buildings. Reviewing the list of these landmarks—which includes the Empire State Building, Rockefeller Center, and the Chrysler Building—I grew a bit empirically curious. So I can share that in 1929, Walter P. Chrysler's private office/residence on the top floors of his eponymous building, was the highest toilet in the world. At least it was for six months, until the ESB, with its 2,500 commodes, was completed and eclipsed Chrysler's claim to fame.