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DAVIDS, Gerson

Born: 1905 05 15
Died: 1974 11 23

Architect

SACA:
Reg No: 785
Year registered: 1942

Spec. Qual. Exam (Witwatersrand).

TPIA (1942); ISAA (1942); MCQS; ARIBA.

Was born in Skapiskis in the district of Rokiskis, Lithuania, his name then being Gersonas Davidavicius (Davidovitz), son of Raphael Alter and Friede Davidovitz. He studied architecture, civil engineering and quantity surveying at the University of Lithuania from where he qualified in 1930, and was in private practice in Lithuania until 1935 when he came to South Africa. Shortly after arriving, a serious accident caused him to lose an eye but he pursued his profession nonetheless and was admitted to the Institute of South African Architects in 1942. (He also qualified as an engineer and quantity surveyor, as his training in Lithuania encompassed all three disciplines.) He appears to have designed privately before this date however, see below. In about 1942 he entered into partnership with S NESTADT in Johannesburg (cf DAVIDS & NESTADT). Subsequently from the 1940s he was in partnership for many years with a Mr HAAS see DAVIDS & HAAS According to a profile in Architect & Builder (Sep 1959:73), buildings by DAVIDS & HAAS included a number of blocks of flats in Johannesburg such as Zarann Mansions, Da Gama Court, Annper Heights, Haradine Heights as well as office blocks, among which were Troyemark House, Sheffield House, a warehouse for L Feldman Ltd and several factories, all executed before 1959. DAVIDS & HAAS designed many further buildings, and continued to function under this name even after HAAS emigrated to Canada. By 1967 DAVIDS is recorded as a retired member of the Transvaal Institute. He formally retired from practice. in 1972.

DAVIDS married Julia Rubinstein on 1932 07 06 by whom he had two daughters.

(Archt & Bldr Sep 1959:73 port; ISAA mem list; RAU doc)

This entry has been updated and the photograph of Gerson DAVIDS kindly sent to us by his daughter Jean Campbell.

(Transvaal Inst. practicing.)

All truncated references not fully cited in 'References' are those of Joanna Walker's original text and cited in full in the 'Bibliography' entry of the Lexicon.

List of projects

With photographs
With notes


House Hurwitz: 1938. Houghton, Johannesburg, Gauteng - Architect

Books citing DAVIDS

Feldberg, Leon. 1968. South African Jewry : A Survey of the Jewish Community; Its Contribution to South Africa; Directory of Communal Institutions; and a Who's Who of Leading Personalities. Johannesburg: Fielding Publishing. pp 121

ISAA. 1959. The Yearbook of the Institute of South African Architects and Chapter of SA Quantity Surveyors 1958-1959 : Die Jaarboek van die Instituut van Suid-Afrikaanse Argitekte en Tak van Suid-Afrikaanse Bourekenaars 1958-1959. Johannesburg: ISAA. pp 89, 183

ISAA. 1969. The Yearbook of the Institute of South African Architects and Chapter of SA Quantity Surveyors 1968-1969 : Die Jaarboek van die Instituut van Suid-Afrikaanse Argitekte en Tak van Suid-Afrikaanse Bourekenaars 1968-1969. Johannesburg: ISAA. pp 91, 144