The Eames Institute’s acquisition of William Stout’s bookstore preserves a cultural icon

At the corner of Montgomery and Washington streets, the shadowy wind tunnel of San Francisco’s financial district suddenly opens and the historic neighborhood around Jackson Square begins. The buildings drop down to two, three, and four stories, and an earlier architectural pattern of brick, stone, and wood-framed windows replaces concrete and steel. Two quiet blocks up, 840 Montgomery has been home to William Stout Architectural Books since 1984. On the December day I met Bill Stout and Erik Heywood there, jazz played amid the floor-to-ceiling stacks and tables spread with books. Stout and Heywood were behind the counter, looking at blueprints of Le Corbusier’s Villa Roche that

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