“The four initial floors of the fourteen-storey Reliance Building, designed by Charles B. Atwood of Daniel Burnham’s office and the structural engineer E.C. Shankland, were erected in 1890. This, the first comprehensive achievement of the system now known as Chicago construction, was repeated innumerable times in Chicago in the building boom that lasted from 1890 to 1893. It consisted of a riveted steel-frame superstructure, hollow-tile flooring on steel joists, plaster fire-proofing, perimeter bay windows filled with plate glass, steel-trussed wind bracing and bedrock concrete caissons sometimes extending for as much as 125 feet beneath the footing…”
The Reliance Building is the first skyscraper to have large plate glass windows make up the majority of its surface area, foreshadowing a feature of skyscrapers that would become dominant in the 20th century. It is located at 32 North State Street, Chicago, Illinois, and as of 2006 houses the Hotel Burnham. The Reliance building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1970; and on January 7, 1976, it was designated a National Historic Landmark in the USA.
The world’s first metal-framed, glass curtain-walled building was Oriel Chambers, 1864, Liverpool, England. The building was only five floors high, as the elevator had not been invented. The building is the precursor of modern buildings. One of the architects of the Reliance Building, John Root, was a student in Liverpool during the construction of Oriel Chambers and 16 Cook Street, Liverpool, the second such building. The Reliance Building resembles Oriel Chambers in the construction method and use of oriel windows.
sourced from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reliance_Building/ and greatbuldings.com/