Carey, Raymond Marwood-Elton

CAREY, Raymond Marwood-Elton (1883-1975), a talented yet highly underrated figure in the architectural history of Winnipeg and in the history of Detroit, Michigan. Born in Guernsey, Channel Islands on 27 August 1883, he was educated in Bath, Co. Somerset, England, but by 1901 he had relocated to London. Newly uncovered documents from the Royal Inst. of British Architects in London reveal that Carey possessed impeccable professional credentials which he obtained during his residency there. In 1901-03, he articled with none other than Charles F.A. Voysey, the acknowledged master of the Arts & Crafts style in England. In 1903-05 he continued his training under the prominent architect Leonard A.S. Stokes, and remained with him as a draftsman until 1907. Carey then traveled in Italy for a full year, returning to London in 1909 and working in the office of Sir Ernest George, FRIBA, and in the London office of Walter F. Cave, FRIBA.

Armed with this extensive knowledge of contemporary design trends in England, and with a wealth of office experience there, he left England and arrived in Winnipeg in October 1909, aged 26, and worked there briefly as a draftsman, then went to San Francisco before returning to Winnipeg to open an office in early 1911. He formed a partnership with John Woodman, an engineer by training, who had been active in that city since 1900, both as an engineer and architect (see list of works under Woodman & Carey). Their collaboration was immediately successful, and the hand of Carey is clearly evident in the quality and character of the work by the firm from 1911 onward. They produced several significant commercial and industrial buildings including the Lindsay Building (1912), the Stovel Pub. Co. warehouse (1914-16), and the first phase of the Paris Building (1915-16).

Carey introduced at new and elegant repertoire of architectural design and detail to the Winnipeg scene, and he employed his scholarly knowledge of historical precedent to great effect in his residential commissions. During this period, Carey appears to have also been operating independently, producing designs for his own house in Tuxedo Park (1915), and for the lavish mansion for Robert A. Rogers (1914). He was also an erudite and well read public speaker, and delivered a lengthy lecture entitled “The Meaning of Architecture” to the Western Art Association in early 1915. A full transcript of his speech was published in the Manitoba Free Press [Winnipeg], 13 Feb. 1915, page 9. By early 1917 the partnership of Woodman & Carey had been dissolved, but Carey continued to work in Winnipeg under his own name or in partnership with George W. Northwood for at least another four years (see list of works under Northwood & Carey).

In late 1922 or early 1923 Carey left Canada and moved to Detroit, Michigan to continue his career. There, he worked under his own name and, in 1924, he once again associated himself with an engineer, this time with Horace H. Esselstyn (1872-1957) who had formerly been a partner in the Detroit firm of Esselstyn, Murphy & Hanford, Engineers & Architects. The partnership of Carey & Esselstyn was active from September 1923 to 1929. During this period, Carey produced some of the most distinctive and sumptuous residential masterpieces of his career. In the wealthy neighbourhoods of Grosse Pointe, and the adjacent Grosse Pointe Farms, he designed more than fifteen mansions in his signature neo- Georgian and Tudor Revival styles, and virtually all of these palatial houses still stand today (as of 2016). His name is also linked to Detroit commissions including Gately’s Department Store on Michigan Avenue, two schools for the City of Detroit, a branch Police Station, a factory for the Mississippi Glass Co., an office building for the Detroit Automobile Co. (owned by Henry Ford), and work on the site of the Detroit General Hospital.

Carey appears to have returned to London, England in 1937 and was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Inst. of British Architects in 1938. His last known work there was for an office block on Tottenham Court Road, London, in 1950. Carey retired from the R.I.B.A. in 1958, and later died in London at the age of 92 years on 20 August 1975 (obituary Building [London], ccxxix, 5 September 1975, 60; biog. in The Detroit Free Press, 9 Sept. 1923, 32; inf. Royal Inst. of British Architects, Fellows Application Form dated 14 May 1938; inf. Grosse Pointe Historical Society; inf. Benjamin Gravel, Detroit). A photographic portrait of Carey was published in the Detroit Free Press, 9 Sept. 1923, 32.

R. CAREY (works in Detroit, Mich)

GROSSE POINTE, MICH., mansion for John M. Dwyer, Jefferson Avenue, 1909 (W. Hawkins Ferry, The Buildings of Detroit, 1968, 304, descrip.; plate 335, illus.)

R. CAREY (works in Winnipeg unless noted)

TUXEDO PARK, residence for the architect, Park Boulevard North near Nanton Boulevard, 1915, and later occupied by John H. McDonald after 1922 (Const., xix, Sept. 1926, 292-4, illus.; R.A.I.C. Journal, v, Sept. 1928, 338, illus.)
NAUSSAU STREET, residence for Robert A. Rogers, 1914 (C.H.G., iii, Nov. 1926, 15, illus.; Early Buildings of Manitoba, 1973, 96, illus.)
ROSYLN ROAD, mansion for Walter P. Moss, 1917, a complete rebuilding of, with additions to, an earlier residence altered by Woodman & Carey in 1913 (Winnipeg Daily Tribune, 26 March 1929, 1, retrospective article and descrip. of this 1917 house; C.H.G., iv, Oct. 1927, 32-3, illus.; R.A.I.C. Journal, v, Sept. 1928, 338-39, illus.; Early Buildings of Manitoba, 1973, 95, illus.; City of Winnipeg, 1986-The Year Past, 1988, 59-60, illus. & descrip.)
PARIS BUILDING, Portage Avenue at Garry Street, 1917, major addition to a commercial building originally designed by Woodman & Carey in 1915-16 (Winnipeg b.p. 488, 1917)
UNION BANK, Selkirk Avenue at Salter Street, 1917 (Winnipeg b.p. 328, 1917; D. Spector, Monuments to Finance: Early Bank Architecture in Winnipeg, 1982, ii, 62-4, illus.)
REGINA, SASK., Union Bank, Scarth Street, 1917; facade altered 1958 (dwgs. Development Planning Services Div., City of Regina, CRP 01-4049; inf. Ross Herrington, Regina)


CANADA, Canadian Historic Sites Markers, 1922. Carey was among 55 to 60 architects and artists who submitted a design, and he received Third Prize of $100. for his design of a standard monument to mark historic sites and properties across Canada (Free Press Evening Bulletin [Winnipeg], 2 Dec. 1922, 9). The First Premium was awarded to C.P. Meredith of Ottawa.

CAREY & ESSELSTYN, Architects & Engineers, Detroit

BELLE ISLE BRIDGE, a concrete bridge with 20 arches, spanning the Detroit River and linking downtown Detroit with Belle Isle, 1921-23 (Detroit Free Press, 23 March 1924, Section Six, 14, illus.)
DETROIT, MICH., Detroit Receiving Hospital, Nurse's Home and Annex, a 15 storey tower, Clinton Street at St. Antoline Street, 1924-26 (Detroit Free Press, 30 Nov. 1924, Section Five, 1, illus.)
DETROIT, MICH., Visitation Roman Catholic Church & Auditorium, Webb Avenue at 12th Street, 1924 (Detroit Free Press, 5 Oct. 1924, Section Six, 3, illus. & descrip.)
GROSSE POINTE, MICH., residence for Walter B. Ford, Moran Road, 1925
GROSSE POINTE, MICH., residence for John H. Lyons, Nottingham Road, 1926
GRAND RIVER, MICH., Police Station, on the Coolidge Highway, north of Grand River, 1926-27 (Detroit Free Press, 31 Oct. 1926, Section Five, 2, illus.)
GROSSE POINTE, MICH., residence for William H. Wells, Beverly Road, 1927
MARTIN PARK, MICH., P.J.M. Halley Elementary School, Linwood Avenue at Green Avenue, 1928 (Detroit Free Press, 19 Aug. 1928, Section Six, 1, illus.)

R. CAREY, Architect, Detroit

BREWER PARK, Saint Clair Community Building, Fairview Avenue, 1928; demol. 2012
GROSSE POINTE, residence for Howard F. Smith, Provencal Road, 1928 (Detroit Free Press, 15 Dec. 1929, Section Four, p. 8, exhibit of drawings)
GROSSE POINTE., residence for John Lord, Kenwood Road, 1928
GROSSE POINTE, mansion for George M. Holley, Provencal Road, 1929-30 (W. Hawkins Ferry, The Buildings of Detroit, 1968, 305-06, descrip.; plate 342, illus.)
GROSSE POINTE, residence for Courtenay D. Allington, Provencal Road, 1929
GROSSE POINTE, Nurse’s Home for the Cottage Hospital, Ridge Road, 1929
GROSSE POINTE, residence for W. Dean Robinson, Kenwood Road, 1929
GROSSE POINTE., mansion for Harold Boyer costing $150,000, Provencal Road, 1930 (Detroit Free Press, 6 Feb. 1930, 23)
GROSSE POINTE, mansion for Muir Snow costing $100,000, Provencal Road, 1930 (Detroit Free Press, 19 April 1930, 21)
GROSSE POINTE, mansion for Earl Holley, Provencal Road, 1930-31 (Detroit Free Press, 16 Oct. 1930, 24)
GROSSE POINTE, mansion for Dr. Thaddeux Walker, Lakeland Avenue, between Kercheval Ave. and St. Paul Avenue, 1930 (Detroit Free Press, 16 Oct. 1930, 24)
GROSSE POINTE, mansion for Gilbert P. Pingree, later occupied by Mrs. R.H. Macauley, Voltaire Place, 1931 (W. Hawkins Ferry, The Buildings of Detroit, 1968, 306, descrip.; plate 343, illus.)
LONDON, ENGLAND, office building on Tottenham Court Road for an unnamed client, 1950 (The Builder [London[, clxxviii, 5 May 1950, illus.; Architecture Illustrated [London], xxx, June 1950, 64, illus.)