Aylesworth, Marshall Benjamin

AYLESWORTH, Marshall Benjamin (1850-1911) was active in many towns in central and northern Ontario where his eclectic and often elaborately decorated churches and institutional buildings were erected. He maintained offices in the following locations:

M.B. Aylesworth, Collingwood, Ont. 1880-1884
M.B. Aylesworth, Toronto, Ont 1885-1896;
M.B. Aylesworth, unknown location 1896-1899;
M.B. Aylesworth, Toronto, Ont. 1899 to Sept. 1902
M.B. Aylesworth, Fort William, Ont., Sept. 1902 to 1907

Born in Ontario on 20 April 1850 he was the son of George Aylesworth of Northumberland County but no information can be found on his early education and training there. In 1878 he was employed as a draughtsman in Toronto, and 1879-80 worked as an architect in that city. He moved to Collingwood, Ont. in late 1880 and advertised his services as an instructor in architectural and mechanical drawing (Daily Messenger [Collingwood], 16 Dec. 1880, 1, advert.). He maintained a practise in Collingwood but the success of his career there was overshadowed by the untimely death of his young wife in May 1883 (obituary for Florence Stone in The Enterprise [Collingwood], 17 May 1883, 3).

In early 1885 he returned to Toronto to open an office on King Street East in 1886 where he remained for the next ten years. During this period he travelled to Europe 'in search of architectural knowledge' (C.A.B., v, Jan 1892, 10) and published an extensive essay on his discoveries there entitled 'A Chapter From My Notebook - Building Methods in Rome' (C.A.B., viii, March 1895, 44-6). He appears to have left Toronto in 1896 but returned to the city in late 1899 and continued to work there until September 1902 when he moved to Fort William. It is here that his most important works in northern Ontario were built, including the Fort William City Hall (1903-04) and the Masonic Temple at Port Arthur (1910). He died at Sarnia, Ont. on 29 August 1911 after suffering a stroke while travelling by steamer from Detroit to Sarnia, and was buried at Warkworth, Northumberland Co., Ont. (biography and list of works in M. Bixby, Industries of Canada - Toronto and Environs, 1886, 190; obituary in Sarnia Observer, 30 Aug. 1911)

OWEN SOUND, ONT., St. George's Anglican Church, Peel Street at Division Street, 1880-81 (Globe [Toronto], 29 Nov. 1879, 5, t.c.; Centenary of St. George's Anglican Church 1849-1949, 8, illus.)
MARKDALE, ONT., 'Knarsboro Hall', a residence for Dr. T.S. Sproule, Main Street East, 1881 (M. Bixby, Industries of Canada-Toronto & Environs, 1886, 190, list of works)
COLLINGWOOD, ONT., commercial block for Rev. Kirkby, Hurontario Street, 1882 (Enterprise [Collingwood], 9 March 1882, 3, descrip.)
COLLINGWOOD, ONT., 'Elmwood', a residence for Edward R. Carpenter, Third Street, 1882 (Bulletin [Collingwood], 15 March 1882, 3, descrip.; Laurel Lane-Moore, Collingwood: Historic Homes and Buildings, 1989, 56-7, illus. & descrip.)
COLLINGWOOD, ONT., Victoria Terrace, a row of four houses for Eliza Lett, Ontario Street, 1882 -83 (Enterprise [Collingwood], 19 Oct. 1882, 3; 29 Nov. 1883, 2; Laurel Lane-Moore, Collingwood: Historic Homes and Buildings, 1989, 60-1, illus. & descrip.)
SAULT STE. MARIE, ONT., Bishop Fauquier Anglican Memorial Chapel, at the Shingwauk Home, Queen Street East, 1882-83 (Dominion Churchman [Toronto], viii, 10 Aug. 1882, 377, descrip.)
NOTTAWASAGA, ONT., extensive alterations to West Presbyterian Church, Concession 10, with new tower and spire, interior alterations, and brick walls, 1883 (Enterprise [Collingwood], 29 March 1883, 3, descrip.)
AURORA, ONT., Trinity Anglican Church, 1883-84 (Trinity Church, Aurora, 1846-1936, 10, illus.)
COLLINGWOOD, ONT., Sunday School for the Presbyterian Church, 1884 (Enterprise [Collingwood], 8 May 1884, 3, t.c.)
COLLINGWOOD, ONT., Central Ward School and East Ward School, 1884 (Enterprise [Collingwood], 26 June 1884, 2, t.c.)
NEWMARKET, ONT., St. Paul's Anglican Church, Darcy Street at Church Street, 1884 (Newmarket Era, 7 Nov. 1884, 2, descrip.; History of the Town of Newmarket, 1958, 292-3, descrip.)
WARKWORTH, ONT., Percy Township Hall, 1884 (Canada, Town Halls of Canada, 1987, 295, illus.)
MARKDALE, ONT., Methodist Church, Toronto Street, 1885; burned 1905 (Markdale Standard, 26 Nov. 1885, 1, descrip.; 31 Dec. 1885, 4, descrip.)
OWEN SOUND, ONT., Grey County Court House, addition and alterations, 1885 (Globe [Toronto], 11 July 1885, 11, t.c.)
ALMONTE, ONT., Methodist Church, 1886-87 (Ottawa Daily Citizen, 29 May 1886, 2, t.c.; Almonte Gazette, 24 June 1887, 5, descrip.)
CAMPBELLFORD, ONT., a large public school with nine classrooms, 1889-90 (Weekly British Whig [Kingston], 27 Feb. 1890, 3)
BEETON, ONT., Presbyterian Church, 1890 (C.R., i, 12 April 1890, 3, t.c.)
BAILIEBORO, ONT., Christ Church (Anglican), 1890 (Canadian Churchman [Toronto], xvi, 4 Sept. 1890, 536, descrip.)
NEWMARKET, ONT. High School, Prospect Street at Timothy Street, 1891; burned March 1893, and later rebuilt to a design by Oliver E. Tench; demol. 1979 (Newmarket Era, 15 May 1891, 3; History of the Town of Newmarket, 1958, 280-81)
TORONTO, ONT., residence for Mrs. Marian T. Gibson, Elmsley Place at St. Joseph Street, 1892-93 (P. McHugh, Toronto Architecture: A City Guide, 1985, 125)
KITCHENER, ONT., residence for Dr. Clemmen, Queen Street at Church Street, 1894 (C.R., v, 22 Feb. 1894, 1)
TORONTO, ONT., residence for P. Dowley, Wilson Avenue near King Street West, 1898 (Toronto b.p. 263, 26 July 1898)
COLBORNE, ONT., Methodist Church, 1900-01 (First Century of Methodism in Colborne 1823-1923, 9, illus.)
TORONTO, ONT., shop and residence for Dr. Robert B. Aylesworth, Queen Street West near Lansdowne Avenue, 1901 (Toronto b.p. 108, 10 July 1901)
TORONTO, ONT., factory for Sanderson Pearcy & Co., Booth Avenue near Eastern Avenue, 1902 (Toronto b.p. 163, 15 July 1902)
KENORA, ONT., Royal Jubilee Hospital, 1903-04 (Daily Times-Journal [Fort William], 25 June 1903, 6; C.R., xiv, 19 Aug. 1903, 2, t.c.)
TORONTO, ONT., pair of houses for John S. Beaty, St. Clarens Avenue, 1905-06 (Toronto b.p. 2506, 14 Nov. 1905)
SAULT STE. MARIE, ONT., parish hall for St. Luke's Anglican Church, Albert Street East, 1907 (Const., i, Oct. 1907, 63)


McKELLER MEMORIAL HOSPITAL, John Street at Vickers Street, 1902-03 (Daily Times-Journal [Fort William], 8 Oct. 1902, 2; Manitoba Free Press [Winnipeg], 17 Sept. 1902, 11, descript.; 21 Sept. 1903, 9, illus.)
CITY HALL, Donald Street, 1903-04; demol. 1963 (Weekly Times-Journal [Fort William], 14 March 1903, 1; 17 Oct. 1903, 2, descrip.)
CUMBERLAND STREET, at Park Street, commercial block for Ivan L. Matthews, 1903-04 (C.R., xiv, 8 April 1903, 2; Daily Times-Journal [Fort William], 30 May 1904, 1, descrip. & illus.)
COURT STREET, opposite McVicar Street, residence for James Meek, 1904 (C.A.B., xvii, Aug. 1904, 135)
WEST FORT METHODIST CHURCH, Gore Street, 1904 (C.A.B., xvii, Aug. 1904, 135)
MASONIC TEMPLE, May Street, 1907 (Daily Times-Journal [Fort William], 21 June 1907, 1, 4)


ST. JOHN'S ANGLICAN CHURCH, Pearl Street, additions and alterations, 1903 (C.R., xiv, 15 April 1903, 2)
ANDREW BLOCK, Arthur Street at St. Paul Street, 1904 (booklet entitled The New Ontario, c. 1910, illus.; copy held at the Fort William Public Library)
PARK STREET, store and residence for D.M. Davidson, 1904 (C.A.B., xvii, Aug. 1904, 135)
REGENT STREET, residence for Herbert G. Greenland, 1904 (C.A.B., xvii, Aug. 1904, 135)
HIGH STREET, residence for John Ritchie, 1904 (C.A.B., xvii, Aug. 1904, 135)
PORT ARTHUR SKATING & CURLING RINK, Cumberland Street, 1904 (Weekly Times-Journal [Fort William], 12 Nov. 1904, 2; descrip.)
KAMINISTIQUIA RIVER, ONT. (near Port Arthur), residences for James Gowanlock and Dr. Caldwell, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 12 April 1905, 6)