Miller, John Melville

MILLER, John Melville (1875-1948), active in Montreal, Que. where he was in partnership with Alexander C. Hutchison and George W. Wood from 1908 to 1918 (see list of works under Hutchison, Wood & Miller). He later worked under his own name, maintaining a successful practise for over twenty years. Born in Montreal on 15 June 1875, he was educated at the Montreal High School, and served his architectural apprenticeship under Alex F. Dunlop from 1890 to 1895. By 1894 he was already an accomplished delineator, and his elaborate competition design for “A Drug Store”, one of number of design competitions sponsored by the Canadian Architect & Builder [Toronto], was published as a full page plate in that journal (C.A.B., vii, May 1894, illus.). In 1899 he moved to Boston to study architecture, and remained there until late 1900. After his return to Montreal he joined the firm of Hutchison & Wood and was later invited to become a full partner in 1908. Their firm became one of the largest and most successful architectural offices in that city before WWI, and they obtained nearly fifty significant commissions for commercial, industrial, institutional and residential work in Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto.

When Hutchison retired in 1918, Miller decided to open his own office, making a slow transition from the Beaux-Arts style which he employed in his work with the partnership, to a stripped- down modernist style best seen in his design for the Gate House Building, Montreal (1930; demol. 1960), and in his design for the sprawling 6 storey Montcalm Market Place in Quebec City (c. 1930, but not built). Miller was also active as a watercolour artist who studied painting under Maurice Cullen, R.C.A., and he regularly exhibited his architectural drawings and his art work at the annual exhibitions of the Royal Canadian Academy (E. McMann, Royal Canadian Academy of Arts Exhibitions & Members, 1981, 287). He was elected as an Associate of the R.C.A. in 1911, and as a full member in 1927. Miller was also an active member of the Arts Club of Montreal, and frequently exhibited his paintings and drawings there (E. McMann, Montreal Museum of Fine Arts - Spring Exhibitions 1880-1970, 1988, 267). Miller died in Montreal on 17 September 1948 (obit. Montreal Star, 17 Sept. 1948, 2; Gazette [Montreal], 18 Sept. 1948, 8; biog. R. Hamilton, Prominent Men of Canada, 1931-32, 535).


A. SOMMER & CO., Mayor Street, 1919-20, a major addition to office building originally designed in 1912 by Hutchison Wood & Miller (C.R., xxxiii, 23 July 1919, 43; xxxv, 2 March 1921, 203-05, illus. & descrip.)
WESTMOUNT, The Mechanic's Institute, Atwater Avenue, 1920 (A. Gubbay & S. Hooff, Montreal's Little Mountain: A Portrait of Westmount, 1979, 105-06, illus.)
WESTMOUNT, Shaar Hashomayim Synagogue, Kensington Avenue, 1921-22 (C.R., xxxiv, 10 March 1920, 61, t.c.; A Gubbay & S. Hooff, Montreal's Little Mountain: A Portrait of Westmount, 1979, 106-07, illus.; Montreal, Les Eglises, 1981, 442-5, illus.)
OUTREMONT, residence for Samuel Eidlow, St.Joseph Blvd. West at Nelson Avenue, 1923 (Montreal, Les Residences, 1987, 228-9, illus.)
WESTMOUNT, residence for Dr. Francis McNaughton, Sherbrooke Street West, 1922-23 (Const., xvi, Aug. 1923, 270-72, illus.)
WESTMOUNT, residence for W.G.M. Shepherd, Edgehill Road, 1922-23 (Const., xvi, Aug. 1923, 264-7, illus.)
ONTARIO AVENUE, residence for W. D'Oyley Hutchins, 1923-24 (C.R., xxxvii, 24 Oct. 1923, 53)
WESTMOUNT, residence for Charles F. Notman, Mount Pleasant Avenue, 1922-23 (Const., xvi, Aug. 1923, 268-9, illus.; C.H.G., ii, Oct. 1925, 26-8, 52, illus.)
(with Hugh Vallance) SHRINERS HOSPITAL FOR CRIPPLED CHILDREN, Cedar Avenue, 1924-25 (C.R., xxxviii, 28 May 1924, 540, illus. & descrip.; Architecture [New York], Vol. 50, July 1924, 234, illus. & descrip.; Modern Hospital [Chicago], xxiii, Aug. 1924, 137-9, illus. & descrip.; R.A.I.C.Journal, iv, July 1927, 242-9, illus. & descrip.)
WESTMOUNT, major addition to residence for Thomas Arnold, Montrose Avenue, 1926; originally designed by Hutchison Wood & Miller in 1916 (Montreal, Les Residences, 1987, 42, illus.)
ASCH BUILDING, Ste. Catherine Street West at Guy Street, for Joseph C. Asch, 1927-28 (C.R., xli, 16 Nov. 1927, 44; xlii, 11 April 1928, 58)
ATWATER AVENUE, at St. Sulpice Road, apartment block for Frederick W.Dakin, 1928 (Montreal, Les Appartements, 1991, 7-9, illus.)
ROYAL VIEW APARTMENTS, Atwater Avenue, 1928 (C.R., xlii, 18 Jan. 1928, 51; 15 Feb. 1928, 50)
HARVARD AVENUE, residence for George Edgar, 1928 (Montreal b.p. 5109, 1928)
MONTREAL HEBREW OLD PEOPLE'S & SHELTERING HOME, Esplanade Avenue near Marie Anne Street, 1928 (Gazette [Montreal], 15 Oct. 1928, 7; inf. Scott O. Edwards)
MOUNT ROYAL, residence for Douglas W. Ogilvie, St. Sulpice Road near Picquet Road, 1928-29 (Town of Mount Royal, building permit records and drawings; inf. Scott O. Edwards)
ROSLYN AVENUE, residence for Antoine Laurin, 1929 (Montreal b.p. 3207, 1929)
CHEVRA KADESHA SYNAGOGUE, Fairmount Avenue West at Hutchison Street, 1929 (Montreal b.p. 1503, 1929)
HENRY GATEHOUSE & SONS, Dorchester Street West near Union Avenue, 1931-32; demol. C. 1960 (C.R., xlv, 14 Oct. 1931, 54; Const., xxv, June 1932, 135-7, 146, illus. & descrip.; R.A.I.C. Journal, ix, July 1932, ix, illus. in advert.)
ST. SULPICE ROAD, residence for Murray R. Chipman, 1934 (C.H.G., xi, Oct.-Nov 1934, 35-6, illus.; xvi, April 1939, 22-3, illus.)
MOUNT ROYAL, residence for Humphreys Milliken, Stanstead Avenue near Dunvegan Road, 1936 (dwgs. in the possession of Claudine Bujold, Town of Mount Royal)
OUTREMONT, Canterbury Apartments, Willowdale Avenue at Canterbury Street, 1939 (C.R., lii, 11 Jan. 1939, 30; but later credited to Myron Kalman by Superior Court order - see Tim Morawetz, Art Deco Architecture Across Canada, 2017, 139, illus. & descrip.)
MOUNT ROYAL, residence for F.J. Byington, Moncrieff Road, 1943 (C.H.G., xx, Jan./Feb. 1943, 29, illus.)
MOUNT ROYAL, residence for Dudley E. Ross, Dunsmuir Avenue, 1943 (C.H.G., xx, July/Aug. 1943, 36, illus.)
MOUNT ROYAL, residence for Mayor R.E. Schofield, Laird Boulevard, 1945 (C.H.G., xxii, July 1945, 28, illus.)
MOUNT ROYAL TOWN HALL, Roosevelt Avenue at Churchill Road, 1946 (C.R., lix, Sept. 1946, 141)
HAMPSTEAD, residence for C.R. Gross, Merton Crescent North, 1946 (C.H.G., xxiii, Aug. 1946, 25, illus.)


KITCHENER, ONT., major addition to the Walper House Hotel, King Street, 1920 (C.R., xxxiv, 18 Feb. 1920, 52, t.c.)
(with Charles J. Saxe) DORVAL, QUE., Royal Montreal Golf Club, Bouchard Boulevard at Galland Boulevard, 1922-23 (C.R., xxxvii, 9 March 1923; Montreal, Les Edifices Publics, 1981, 262-5, illus.)
GODBOUT, QUE., paper factory for the St. Regis Paper Co. of Canada Ltd., 1923 (Le Prix Courant [Montreal], lvi, 21 Sept. 1923, 35)
CORNER BROOK, NFLD, Court House and General Building, 1925 (M. Carter, Early Canadian Court Houses, 1983, 34, 236; dwgs. Nfld. Dept. of Public Works, St. Johns)
BROCKVILLE, ONT., Eugene F. Phillips Electrical Co., two factory buildings, 1927; addition to factory, 1931 (Daily Commercial News [Toronto], 30 July 1927, 5; C.R., xlv, 11 March 1931, 125-6)
KNOWLTON, QUE., a country residence for an unnamed client, 1933 (R.A.I.C.Journal, x, Aug. 1933, 145, illus.)
BROME LAKE, QUE., residence for M.C. Martin, 1934 (C.H.G., xi, June-July 1934, 28-9, illus.)


MONTREAL, QUE., Church of St. Andrew & St. Paul, Dorchester Street West at St. Monique Street, 1929. J. Melville Miller was one of twelve Montreal architectural firms invited to submit an entry (R.A.I.C. Journal, vi, Dec. 1929, 442-3, illus.). His proposal was set aside in favour of the modern Gothic design by Harold L. Fetherstonhaugh, who was declared the winner.