Benzie, James Anderson

BENZIE, James Anderson (1881-1930), a native of Glasgow, Scotland and son of a prominent builder William Benzie, was born there on 19 Februry 1881 and educated at Anderson's Technical College and at the Glasgow School of Art. He trained in marine engineering in Glasgow (in 1897-98) and worked in an architectural firm in Glasgow (in 1899-1903) before joining his father's building construction firm in 1903-10. He moved to Canada in late 1910 and joined the office of A. Arthur Cox in Vancouver (in 1910-15). Benzie then opened his own office in December 1916 and practiced under his own name until 1923 when he formed a partnership with William Bow, another Glasgow native who he had met while a student at the Glasgow School of Art. Benzie took a particular interest in hospital planning, but his schemes were never simple and utilitarian; his most impressive work (now regrettably demolished) was the sophisticated Edwardian treatment of the Rotary Club Hospital, Vancouver (1918). Benzie served a term as President of the Architectural Inst. Of British Columbia in 1926-27 and died in Vancouver on 6 February 1930 (obit. Province [Vancouver], 6 Feb. 1930, 1; R.A.I.C. Journal, vii, March 1930, xxxiv, biog. and port. Who's Who and Why in Canada, 1923-24, 528; D. Luxton, Building the West: The Early Architects of British Columbia, 2003, 370-1, 492)


(works in Vancouver unless noted)

VANCOUVER GENERAL HOSPITAL, West 12th Avenue, addition of a Soldier's Hospital, to serve as the Military Hospital Annex, 1916-17; addition to the Nurses' Home, 1921 (Vancouver Daily World, 26 Jan. 1917, 12; 31 March 1917, 16, illus. & descrip.; Modern Hospital [Chicago], xi, Oct. 1918, 257-60, illus. & descrip.; C.R., xxxv, 6 April 1921, 64, t.c.; dwgs. Vancouver City Archives)
ROTARY CLUB TUBERCULOSIS HOSPITAL, West Pender Street, 1918-19; demol. (C.R., xxxii, 5 June 1918, 446-7, illus. & descrip.; British Columbia Record [Vancouver], 2 May 1919, 4; dwgs. Vancouver City Archives)
ANGUS DRIVE, at Nanton Avenue, residence for Clarence Wallace, 1919 (British Columbia Record [Vancouver], 2 May 1919, 4)
WEST 21st AVENUE, at Argyle Street, residence for Mrs. Alice Brydon-Jack, 1919 (British Columbia Record [Vancouver], 2 May 1919, 4)
STANDARD BANK, West Hastings Street at Richards Street, major addition, 1919 (British Columbia Record [Vancouver], 2 May 1919, 4)
BELLA BELLA, B.C., hospital for Methodist Missionary Board, 1919 (list of works in Who's Who in Canada, 1923-24, 528)
DOLLARTON, overlooking Burrard Inlet, Workmen's Settlement House, c. 1919 (list of works in Who's Who in Canada, 1923-24, 528)
STANLEY PARK, Japanese Canadian War Memorial, 1919 (Vancouver Heritage Inventory: Summary Report, 1986, 107, illus.)
KING EDWARD AVENUE, at Selkirk Avenue, residence for Mrs. George Forsyth, 1919 (British Columbia Record [Vancouver], 3 Nov. 1919, 2)
WEST 29th AVENUE, at Marguerite Street, residence for Mrs. R.L. Bourne, 1919 (British Columbia Record [Vancouver], 3 Nov. 1919, 2)
HUDSON STREET, at West 27th Avenue, residence for Mrs. E.B. Bliss, 1919 (British Columbia Record [Vancouver], 3 Nov. 1919, 2)
TORONTO GENERAL TRUSTS, West Pender Street, office block, 1920 (dwgs. Vancouver City Archives)
CRESCENT BEACH, residence for W.C. Shelly, 1921 (Vancouver Daily World, 4 March 1921, 11, descrip.)
ABBOTSFORD, B.C., General Hospital, 1921 (Abbotsford Post, 19 Aug. 1921, 1)
WEST 29TH AVENUE, near Alexandra Street, residence for Hubert A. Wallace, 1921-22 (Vancouver Daily World, 30 Nov. 1921, 17)
STANLEY PARK, outdoor memorial to Pauline Johnson, near the Siwash Rock, erected by the Women's Canadian Club, 1922 (Vancouver Daily World, 25 May 1922, 7, descrip.)


POINT GREY, Bank of Toronto, Kerrisdale Branch, Wilson Road, 1923 (Vancouver Daily World, 13 Jan. 1923, 9)
NORTH VANCOUVER, B.C., North Vancouver High School, 23rd Street East, 1923-24 (C.R., xxxvii, 30 May 1923, 169, t.c.; R.A.I.C. Journal, iv, Nov. 1927, 411-12, illus. & descrip.)
CAPILANO, B.C., a four room school, for the North Vancouver School Board, 1924 (Vancouver Daily World, 15 Jan. 1924, 14, t.c.)
VANCOUVER, B.C., Cleland-Bell Engravers Co., Cambie Street near West Pender Street, office and workshop, 1925 (Province [Vancouver], 22 March 1925, 27, descrip.; City of Vancouver b.p. B 11013, 14 May 1925; inf. Patrick Gunn, Vancouver)
NORTH VANCOUVER, B.C., major additions to Ridgeway School, East 8th Street at Ridgeway Avenue, 1926 (H. Kalman, Exploring Vancouver, 1993, 227, illus.)
NORTH VANCOUVER, B.C., Lion's Gate General Hospital, East 13th Street, major additions, 1928-29 (C.R., xlii, 4 July 1928, 49; R.A.I.C. Journal, viii, Jan. 1931, 23-4, 26, illus.)
TRAIL, B.C., Federal Building, Cedar Avenue, 1929 (C.R., xliii, 3 Oct. 1929, 63)
(with H.W. Meech) LETHBRIDGE, ALTA., St. Michael's Hospital, 13th Street South, 1931 (C.R., xlv, 14 Jan. 1931, 53; R.A.I.C. Journal, ix, Feb. 1932, 36-9, illus. & descrip.)