Henderson, Alexander Ernest

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HENDERSON, Alexander Ernest (1873-1927), active in New Westminster and in Vancouver as part of the following firms:

A.E. Henderson, New Westminster, 1902
Grant & Henderson, Vancouver, 1903-1911
Grant, Henderson & Cook, Vancouver, 1912-16
A.E. Henderson, Vancouver 1919-27

Born in Orangeville, Ont. on 13 July 1873, he attended Trinity College School in Port Hope, Ont., then moved to Toronto and studied architecture for two years at the School of Practical Science at the Univ. of Toronto in 1891-93. While in Toronto, he served a four year apprenticeship in the office of Richard C. Windeyer & Son, a well-known firm that specialized in ecclesiastical work, and he later spent 1 ½ years working for an architectural firm in Montreal. In 1898 Henderson moved to British Columbia, and worked as an assistant to George W. Grant, a leading architect active in New Westminster and Vancouver. He worked briefly under his own name in 1902, and in 1903 he was invited by his former employer to join him in a new partnership (see list of works under Grant & Henderson). In May 1905 Henderson opened a branch office of their firm in New Westminster, and supervised the work on new buildings for the Dominion Exhibition there (Contract Record [Toronto], xvi, 7 June 1905, 10). Their partnership flourished, and they were joined by H. T. Cook in 1912. Independently, Henderson was ambitious enough to enter a major competition held in Vancouver under his own name in 1914. He was one of thirty architects from the United States and Canada who submitted a design in the competition for the proposed Vancouver Civic Centre (Contract Record [Toronto], xxix, 6 Jan. 1915, 8, list of competitors). His scheme was not premiated however, and Theodore Korner was later declared the winner, but his proposal was never built.

Henderson later opened an office in Vancouver under his own name in 1919, and continued to practise until 1927, specializing in the design of hospital buildings. He died in Vancouver on 2 November 1927 (obituary The Province [Vancouver], 3 Nov. 1927, 32; Contract Record [Toronto], xli, 16 Nov. 1927, 1180; biog. E.O.S. Scholefield, British Columbia: From the Earliest Times to the Present, 1914, Vol. iv, 283-84; biog. D. Luxton, Building The West: The Early Architects of British Columbia, 2003, 242, 504; inf. Architectural Inst. of British Columbia) .

(works in Vancouver unless noted)

NEW WESTMINSTER, B.C., Hospital for the Insane, major additions, including the Laundry Building, the Kitchens, and a new electricity generating plant, 1902 (Vancouver Daily World, 6 Oct. 1902, 5, descrip.l C.R., xiii, 12 Nov. 1902, 6)
NEW WESTMINSTER, B.C., residence for Joseph R. Grant, Royal Avenue at Clinton Place, 1902-03 (C.R., xiii, 31 Dec. 1902, 3)
DOMINION CANNERIES, Drake Street, 1918 (dwgs. City of Vancouver Archives)
ALEXANDRA ORPHANAGE CAMP, West 7th Avenue, at Crescent Beach, major addition, 1918-19 (Vancouver Daily World, 17 May 1918, 18, illus. & descrip.; 22 June 1918, 6, descrip.; British Columbia Record [Vancouver], 2 May 1919, 2)
PORT HAMMOND, B.C., Bank of Hamilton, Maple Crescent, 1919 (Vancouver Daily World, 24 July 1919, 9; British Columbian [New Westminster], 7 Oct. 1919, 21)
GRANVILLE STREET, at Helmcken Street, commercial block for Mrs. Drummond, 1919 (British Columbia Record [Vancouver], 2 May 1919, 1 and 4)
ANGUS DRIVE, near Nanton Avenue, residence for Allan A. Ross, 1919 (British Columbia Record [Vancouver], 3 Nov. 1919, 2)
NANAIMO, B.C., retail store for A.C. Van Houten, Commercial Street, 1919 (British Columbia Record [Vancouver], 3 Nov. 1919, 2)
ST. PAUL’S ROMAN CATHOLIC HOSPITAL, Burrard Street, new wing for the Nurse’s Home, and a one storey addition above the existing hospital, 1921 (C.R., xxxv, 23 March 1921, 54, t.c.; Vancouver Daily World, 23 May 1921, 13, descrip.)
POINT GREY, residence for William Dick, Marine Drive near West 57th Street, 1922 (C.R., xxxvi, 2 Aug. 1922, 49, t.c.; 6 Sept. 1922, 56)
NANAIMO, B.C., Masonic Hall, Commercial Street, 1923 (inf. Donald Luxton, Vancouver)
ST. THOMAS ANGLICAN CHURCH, East 42nd Avenue at St. Margaret Street, 1923 (dwgs. City of Vancouver Archives)
NANAIMO, B.C., Nanaimo General Hospital, Franklyn Street at Machleary Street, 1924-25 (C.R., xxxviii, 15 Oct. 1924, 60; xxxix, 18 March 1925, 57, t.c.; 27 May 1925, 535, illus. & descrip.)
POINT GREY, a rectory or residence for St. Peter & St. Paul Roman Catholic Church, West 39th Street near Cartier Street, located on the same lot immediately south of the Church, 1925 (Point Grey b.p. 7946, 18 May 1925; inf. Patrick Gunn, City of Vancouver)
SHEFFIELD APARTMENTS, Comox Street near Jervis Street, 1925, demol. (H. Kalman, Exploring Vancouver, 1978, 136; dwgs. City of Vancouver Archives)