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ELLIS, John

Born: 1874 06 10
Died: 1929 08 17

Architect


Was born in Stonehaven, Scotland and was articled to A Marshall Mackenzie in Aberdeen from 1890 to 1895, remaining as assistant for a further year. He commenced independent practice in Stonehaven in 1897 but almost immediately thereafter he emigrated to South Africa where he was listed working as an architect in Pretoria in partnership with Granger FLEMING, as FLEMING & ELLIS at Mortgage Buildings, Church Sq in 1899.

According to local information, he was invited to come out to Pretoria by George Heys in order to build Heys' offices at Tudor Chambers, which he duly did design. It would appear that he completed his articles in 1896 and left for South Africa in 1897.

He was admitted LRIBA in the mass intake of 20 July 1911, his proposers being Alexander Marshall Mackenzie, George Sutherland and George Watt.

Ellis's obituary in the RIBA Journal states that he had built up a 'considerable practice in Pretoria' and had returned to Scotland during the Anglo-Boer War.The 'Stonehaven Journal' of 23 July 1908 reports that he had 'lately returned from Pretoria'. His name was listed in post-war Pretoria directories as late as 1909. John Ellis remained registered to practice in South Africa until 1909.

He returned to Stonehaven in 1910 to recommence practice, at 21, then 29 Ann Street and later in Gurney Street until his death, beginning practice in Aberdeen where he remained until his death, mostly designing houses. (See The Bellman website).

There is also a listing of this practitioner on the Dictionary of Scottish Architects.

(Cowie 1989; RIBA Jnl vol 36, 1928-9:300; SAAE&S Jnl Oct 1906:4; UTD 1909)

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

Crows Buildings: c1909. Tshwane (Pretoria), Gauteng - Architect
Saxon Buildings: After 1897. Tshwane (Pretoria), Gauteng - Architect
Store Brothers Building: 1906. Tshwane (Pretoria), Gauteng - Architect
Tudor Chambers: 1904. Central, Tshwane (Pretoria), Gauteng - Architect
Victoria Cottage Hospital: 1904. Arcadia, Tshwane (Pretoria), Gauteng - Architect

Books citing ELLIS

Picton-Seymour, Désirée. 1977. Victorian Buildings in South Africa. Cape Town: AA Balkema. pp 295, 297