Dufort, Joseph Cajetan

DUFORT, Joseph Cajetan (1868-1936), active in Montreal, Que. for his entire career from 1895 until 1930. Dufort was born in Montreal on 6 September 1868, and received his high school education at the College Sainte Marie in 1878-85, then attended the Ecole du Plateau in 1885-87. He served an apprenticeship in an office with a Montreal architect in 1887 to 1889. Rather than continue his architectural education at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris, as several of his colleagues from Montreal had chosen to do, Dufort moved to the United States, enrolling in the Dept. of Architecture at Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Boston in September 1890 and remained there until June 1893. However, he did not complete his courses, and he did not receive his diploma from MIT. Instead, he returned to Montreal where he was recorded as a draftsman in the busy office of Edward Maxwell in 1894 (McGill Univ., Canadian Architecture Collection, E. & W.S. Maxwell Coll., handwritten list of staff members in the Maxwell office, October 1894). The following year, in January 1895, Dufort became a registered architect with the Province of Quebec Assoc. of Architects, and he opened an office under his own name in March 1895.

His debut on the architectural scene was an impressive one, with his elaborate Queen Anne style design for the summer mansion of Senator Alfred A. Thibaudeau, located at Beauharnois, on the south shore of Lake St. Louis (built 1896; and still standing as of 2018). By 1904, he had fully embraced the Beaux-Arts style, with sophisticated designs for the St. Cunegonde City Hall (1904-05), and the Maisonneuve Town Hall (1910-11). Much of his residential work after WWI was completed in a mannered Tudor revival style, best seen in his treatment of large paired duplexes on Stuart Avenue in Outrement for Arman Boileau (1927). Dufort was fluent in both the French language as well as in English, enabling him to cultivate a diverse range of clients in Outremont, in Westmount, and in the City of Montreal. He was a favoured architect for several Jewish clients, and received commissions for the design of synagogues, a Yiddish theatre, as well as factories and warehouses for successful Jewish businessmen associated with the garment industry in Montreal.

In 1912 he invited Louis J.T. Decary to form a partnership with him, but for unknown reasons their collaboration ended after only a few months, and Dufort continued to practise under his own name for the duration of his career. The stock market crash of October 1929 may have hastened his decision to retire from the profession, and no references to his work have been found after 1930. Dufort died in Montreal on 6 May 1936 (obituary & port. La Presse [Montreal], 7 May 1936, 15; death notice Le Devoir [Montreal], 7 May 1936, 2; obituary R.A.I.C. Journal, xiii, July 1936, 146; biog. and port. in Biographies Canadiennes Francaises, v, 1925, 177). A photographic portrait of Dufort taken about 1912 was published in Montreal Old and New, 1914, 397.

J.C. DUFORT (works in Montreal unless noted)

BEAUHARNOIS, QUE., a large summer villa for the Estate of Hon. C.S. Rodier, occupied by Senator Alfred Arthur Thibaudeau, Pointe St. Louis Road near St. Laurent Street, 1896 (C.R., vii, 2 April 1896, 3; list of works in Biographies Canadiennes Francaises, v, 1925, 177)
SHERBROOKE STREET, six tenements for J.E. Desparois, 1897 (C.R., viii, 9 Sept. 1897, 2)
L'EPHIPHANIE, QUE., residence for Emile Racette, 1897 (C.R., viii, 9 Sept. 1897, 3)
OSBORNE STREET, major additions to residence for William Trenholme, 1897 (C.R., viii, 16 Sept. 1897, 3)
(with R. Montgomery Rodden) MONTREAL HOCKEY ARENA, for the Montreal Hockey Association, Ste. Catherine Street West at Wood Avenue, in Westmount, 1898; with major additions and expansion by R.M. Rodden in 1908, including new spectator galleries, raising the roof, and expansion of the building (Winnipeg Tribune, 18 Oct. 1898, 5, illus. & descrip.; Montreal Daily Star, 2 May 1908, 32, descrip.)
(with R. Montgomery Rodden) NOTRE DAME STREET, tenement for the Estate of C.S. Rodier, 1900 (Le Prix Courant, xxix, 13 July 1900, 165)
NOTRE DAME STREET, near Fulford Street, house and store for the Estate of Hon. C.S. Rodier, 1902 (C.R., xiii, 19 March 1902, 5)
NOTRE DAME STREET, at Guy Street, three houses for J.H. Nault, 1902 (C.R., xiii, 10 Sept. 1902, 2)
STE. CATHERINE STREET, at Moreau Street, four houses and stores for Avila Tremblay, 1903 (C.R., xiv, 11 March 1903, 4)
(with Alphonse Piche) ST CUNEGONDE CITY HALL, Vinet Street, 1904-05 (C.R., xiv, 2 Dec. 1903, 1; Montreal Daily Star, 26 Feb. 1904, 12, descrip.; Montreal, Les Edifices Publics, 1981, 124-5, illus.)
WESTMOUNT, pair of houses for Orille L. Henault, Sherbrooke Street West, 1905 (Le Prix Courant, xxxix, Week No. 19, 1905, 54; Montreal, Les Residences, 1987, 330-1, illus.; City of Westmount, Westmount: A Heritage to Preserve, 1991, 54, illus.)
ST. DENIS STREET, at La Gauchetiere Street, apartment block for Mrs. P.P. Martin, 1906 (Le Prix Courant, Week No. 13, 1906, 44; Montreal, Les Appartements, 1991, 306-08)
YIDDISH THEATRE, St. Lawrence Boulevard near Ontario Street, for Mark Aronson, 1909 (C.R., xxxiii, 9 June 1909, 22)
DUCHESNEAU & DUCHESNEAU CO., St. Paul Street near St. Gabriel Street, warehouse, 1909 (C.R., xxiii, 7 July 1909, 23)
MUSCOVITCH BROS., St. Lawrence Boulevard, warehouse and flats, 1909 (C.R., xxiii, 25 Aug. 1909, 22)
WESTMOUNT, residence for Jean B. Vanier, de Maisonneuve Boulevard West, 1910 (Montreal, Les Residences, 1987, 730-3, illus.)
ATWATER AVENUE, flats for Joseph Grenier, 1910 (C.R., xxiv, 9 Feb. 1910, 23)
BLOOMFIELD BROS., Craig Street, four stores and flats, 1910 (C.R., xxiv, 9 March 1910, 24, t.c.)
MITCHESON STREET (later Clarke Street), six flats for Louis Bernstein, 1910 (C.R., xxiv, 6 April 1910, 28)
CITY HOUSE FURNISHING CO., St. Lawrence Boulevard, warehouse, 1910 (C.R., xxiv, 1 June 1910, 27, t.c.)
DOMINION TOBACCO CO., Papineau Avenue, office and factory, 1910 (C.R., xxiv, 22 June 1910, 27)
WESTMOUNT, residence for Samuel Berlind, Elm Avenue West, 1910 (C.R., xxiv, 27 July 1910, 25, t.c.)
WESTMOUNT, residence for J.P. Vanier, Western Avenue, 1910 (C.R., xxiv, 27 July 1910, 25)
MAISONNEUVE TOWN HALL, Ontario Street, 1910-11 (C.R., xxiv, 27 July 1910, 24, t.c.; La Presse [Montreal], 20 Aug. 1910, 5, illus.; and 29 July 1911, 14, illus. & descrip.; Montreal Daily Star, 28 Nov. 1910, 15, t.c.; Montreal, Les Edifices Publics, 1981, 108-09, illus.)
WOLLENBERG'S MARKET, St. Dominique Street, factory for Abel Wollenberg, 1910 (C.R., xxiv, 3 Aug. 1910, 26)
CHURCH AVENUE, three flats and two stores for J.B. Julien, 1910 (C.R., xxiv, 10 Aug. 1910, 26)
BRITISH AMERICAN IMPORT CO., St. Lawrence Boulevard, commercial building for Carl Rosenberg, 1911 (C.R., xxv, 10 May 1911, 56)
ST. LUKE STREET, apartment block for L. W. Chaput, 1911 (C.R., xxv, 18 Oct. 1911, 57, t.c.)
VINEBERG BUILDING, St. Lawrence Boulevard at Duluth Avenue, factory, 1911-12 (C.R., xxv, 25 Oct. 1911, 64, t.c.; and xxvi, 13 March 1912, 57, illus. & descrip.; Montreal, Architecture Industrielle, 1982, 280-1, illus.)
ST. LAWRENCE BOULEVARD, near Pine Avenue, conversion of store to movie theatre for Glickman & Glickman, 1911 (C.R., xxv, 29 Nov. 1911, 62)
ST. LAWRENCE BOULEVARD, factory for Samuel Berlind, 1911-12 (C.R., xxv, 27 Dec. 1911, 65)

DUFORT & DECARY (works in Montreal unless noted)

ST. LAWRENCE BOULEVARD, at Duluth Avenue, stores and warehouse for Henry Levy, 1912 (C.R., xxvi, 20 March 1912, 69)
WESTMOUNT, residences for Philip and M.J. Glickman, Redfern Avenue, 1912 (C.R., xxvi, 13 March 1912, 69)
DUCHESS THEATRE (later the Corona Theatre), Notre Dame Street West near Charlevoix Street, for Duchess Amusement Co., 1912 (C.R., xxvi, 6 March 1912, 65, t.c.; and 27 March 1912, 53, illus. & descrip.; Montreal, Les Magasins Les Cinemas, 1985, 353-6, illus.; D. Lanken, Montreal Movie Palaces, 1994, 50-3, illus.)
DORVAL, QUE., Notre Dame du Sacre-Coeur Boarding School, Presentation Avenue at Church Street, 1912 (Montreal, Les Couvents, 1984, 326-7, illus.)
WESTMOUNT, residence for Alphonse Racine, Edgehill Avenue, 1912 (C.R., xxvi, 6 March 1912, 67)
PARK AVENUE, at Bernard Street, five stores with apartments, for Joseph B. de Boucherville & Lalonde, 1912 (C.R., xxvi, 6 March 1912, 69)

J.C. DUFORT (works in Montreal unless noted)

GLOBE THEATRE, St. Lawrence Boulevard at Duluth Avenue, 1913 (C.R., xxvii, 23 July 1913, 73, t.c.)
OUIMETOSCOPE THEATRE, Ste. Catherine Street East at Montcalm Street, for Bastien & Back, 1914 (C.R., xxviii, 10 June 1914, 81)
WESTMOUNT, pair of houses for Anselme Letang and John Quinlan, Redfern Avenue, 1915 (Montreal, Les Residences, 1987, 418-21, illus.)
BRAMSON'S AUTO SERVICE CO., City Councillors Street at Ontario Street, a large 2 storey auto garage, 1919 (Montreal Daily Star, 24 March 1919, 3, descrip.)
QUEBEC CITY, QUE., office building for P.P. Martin & Co., Charest Street, 1919 (Quebec City b.p. 5071, 11 Nov. 1919)
B'NAI JACOB JEWISH SYNAGOGUE, Fairmount Avenue West at Esplanade Avenue, in Mile End, 1919-20; altered and rebuilt with new front facade c. 1965 (Montreal Daily Star, 19 April 1919, 31, illus. & detailed descrip.; and 28 Jan. 1920, 25, t.c.; list of works in Biographies Canadiennes Francaises, v, 1925, 177)
OUTREMONT, Chateau Laurier Apartments, St. Viateur Avenue at Durocher Avenue, 1922-23 (C.R., xxxvi, 19 July 1922, 58; Montreal, Les Appartements, 1991, 344-5, illus.)
OUTREMONT, Atlantic Apartments, Lajoie Avenue at Outremont Avenue, 1923 (Outremont b.p. 1615, 8 April 1923)
OUTREMONT, residence for R. Noiseux, McCulloch Avenue, 1923 (Outremont b.p. 1664, 13 July 1923)
OUTREMONT, commercial block of stores and apartments for Mrs. J. de Boucherville, Bernard Avenue, 1924 (Outremont b.p. 1752, 3 April 1924)
OUTREMONT, duplex for Victor Jarry, Davaar Avenue, 1924 (Outremont b.p. 1806, 26 July 1924)
OUTREMONT, triplexes for Aaron Kazarensky, Durocher Avenue, 1925, 1927 (Outremont b.p. 1924, 26 May 1925; b.p. 2214, 11 June 1927)
OUTREMONT, small apartment block for Max Simieovitch, Querbes Avenue, 1925 (Outremont b.p. 1936, 26 June 1925)
OUTREMONT, Norge Apartments, Lajoie Avenue, 1926 (Outremont b.p. 2085, 16 June 1926)
OUTREMONT, Eton Apartments, Querbes Avenue, 1926 (Outremont b.p. 2092, 25 June 1926)
OUTREMONT, three pairs of duplexes for Armand Boileau, Stuart Avenue, 1927 (Outremont b.p. 2150, 29 Nov. 1926; and b.p. 2158, 22 Feb. 1927; and b.p. 2159, 22 Feb. 1927; Continuite [Quebec City], Autumn 1991, illus.)
OUTREMONT, two duplexes for J. Beaudin, Davaar Avenue, 1928 (Outremont b.p. 2407, 25 June 1928)
SEVILLE THEATRE, Ste. Catherine Street West at Chomedy Street, 1928; demol. 2010 (Gazette [Montreal], 28 June 1928, 3; C.R., xlii, 25 July 1928, 62; Montreal, Les Magasins Les Cinemas, 1985, 393-4, illus.; inf. Scott Edwards)
BRENNAN STREET, at Prince Street, warehouse for Aaron Sendel, 1928 (C.R., xlii, 17 Oct. 1928, 48)
OUTREMONT, pair of houses for J. Beaudin, Kelvin Avenue, 1929 (Outremont b.p. 2532, 29 April 1929)


EGLISE ST. JEAN BAPTISTE, Rachel Street East, 1898. Dufort was one of at least three architects invited to submit a design for this major ecclesiastical commission (City of Montreal, Les Eglises, 1981, 252). The scheme by Dufort was set aside and J. Emile Vanier was declared the winner.
MONTREAL, QUE., Ste. Cunegonde City Hall, Richelieu Street at Vinet Street, 1903. Dufort was one of three architects invited to submit an entry in this local competition (Montreal Daily Star, 27 Nov. 1903, 9). He was selected as the winner.