Stewart, Walter Wilson

STEWART, Walter Wilson (1871-1917), the son of William Stewart, a leading architect in Hamilton, Ont. in the last decades of the nineteenth century. Born in Covington, Kentucky, USA in 1871, Walter W. was brought to Canada as an infant and received his early education in Toronto. The family moved to Hamilton in 1885 and Walter served an apprenticeship under his father. In 1893 he was invited by him to form a partnership, and their firm then evolved in the following sequence:

William & Walter Stewart, Hamilton, 1893-1904
Stewart & Witton, Hamilton, 1904-17
Stewart, Witton & Taylor, a branch office of the Hamilton firm, located in Brantford, 1904-1906

Much of his early work, executed in collaboration with his father, was designed in a High Victorian style, but by the turn of the century the influence of the younger Stewart was evident in the designs for institutional, commercial and ecclesiastical works not only in Hamilton but as far away as Stratford, Collingwood and Toronto. When William Stewart retired from practise in April 1904, a new partnership was announced between Walter W. and William P. Witton, a bright young Hamilton architect who had trained in Chicago before returning to Canada in 1895 (Spectator [Hamilton], 23 April 1904, 1). Buoyed by the success of their business, they opened a branch office in Brantford, in collaboration with Lewis H. Taylor, who conducted the affairs of the local office there, leaving Stewart & Witton to concentrate on the Hamilton commissions. Within ten years, their office completed more than forty projects for schools, office buildings, churches and residences in and around Hamilton.

In April 1915 Stewart left for England to participate in military training with the Royal 13th Regiment, and later attained the rank of Lieut. Colonel of the 86th Gun Battalion. His promising career was cut short on 17 April 1917 when he was killed in action in France during WWI while directing front line combat. Stewart was buried in France, and left an estate valued at $76,000.00 (obit. Spectator [Hamilton], 19 April 1917, 1; obit. & port in The Globe [Toronto], 20 April 1917, 2; obit. and port. Const., x, May 1917, 181; C.R., xxxi, 25 April 1917, 385; Building News [London], cxii, 23 May 1917, 451; biog. Dictionary of Hamilton Biography, 1991, ii, 155-56). A photographic portrait of Stewart appeared in The Contract Record, xxx, 22 March 1916, 296. The Special Collections Division of the Hamilton Public Library also holds two photographic portraits of this architect.


BRANTFORD, ONT., office and residence for Dr. T.H. Beir, Wellington Street, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 5 April 1905, 5)
CALEDONIA, ONT., residence for Eldoras Todd, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 5 April 1905, 5)
WROXETER, ONT., new School, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 5 April 1905, 5)
CLINTON, ONT., factory for Clinton Knitting Co., 1905 (C.R., xvi, 12 July 1905, 4, t.c.)
BRANTFORD, ONT., factory for W.B. Burrill, Grey Street, 1906 (C.R., xvii, 28 March 1906, 2)
BRANTFORD, ONT., additions to Huron Street Public School, 1906 (C.R., xvii, 6 June 1906, 4, t.c.)
GUELPH, ONT., Delhi Street, pair of houses for Miss Davies, 1906 (Guelph Weekly Mercury, 11 Oct. 1906, 6)


(works in Hamilton)

ORANGE HALL, James Street North at Mulberry Street, 1904-05 (Spectator [Hamilton], 29 Nov. 1904, 1, descrip.; and 12 Aug. 1905, 1, illus. & descrip.; C.R., xvi, 8 March 1905, 6; inf. Robert Hamilton, of Hamilton)
PEARL STREET, residence for Thomas Binkley, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 8 March 1905, 6)
MAIN STREET EAST, at Spring Street, residence for Joseph L. Cherrier, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 8 March 1905, 6)
HERKIMER STREET WEST, near Kent Street, residence for Maj. Edward G. Zealand, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 8 March 1905, 6)
WENTWORTH STREET SOUTH, residence for Robert A. Thompson, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 8 March 1905, 6)
EPSTEIN BROS. FURNITURE CO., James Street North near Wilson Street, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 22 March 1905, 6)
C.J. MYLES CO., Main Street East at Hughson Street South, warehouse, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 29 March 1905, 6)
THORNTON & DOUGLAS LTD., Cannon Street East at Mary Street, a three storey factory, 1905; converted to residential use 2018-19 (Spectator [Hamilton], 23 Sept. 1905, 20; inf. Robert Hamilton, Hamilton, Ont.)
NORTON MFR. CO., Emerald Street North at Shaw Street, addition to factory, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 8 Nov. 1905, 2)
ARMOURY, James Street North at Robert Street, new facade and major addition, designed 1904; built 1906-07 (Spectator [Hamilton], 15 June 1904, 5; C.R., xvi, 2 Aug. 1905, 4; xvii, 15 Aug. 1906, 5; Canada, Sessional Papers, No. 19, 1908, 19-20, descrip.; Mark Osbaldeston, Unbuilt Hamilton, 2016, 84, illus.)
BAY STREET SOUTH, at Duke Street, residence for Dr. Algernon Woolverton, 1906 (C.R., xvi, 21 Feb. 1906, 4)
WELLINGTON STREET NORTH, at Evans Street, three houses for Joseph Farmer, 1906 (C.R., xvi, 21 Feb. 1906, 4)
ST. ANDREW'S PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH, Barton Street East at Smith Avenue, addition, 1906 (C.R., xvii, 14 March 1906, 3)
WENTWORTH STREET PUBLIC SCHOOL, addition, 1906 (C.R., xvii, 9 May 1906, 4, t.c.)
JACKSON VISIBLE TYPEWRITER CO., Sandford Avenue South at Poplar Avenue, a 3 storey factory, 1906 (C.R., xvii, 30 May 1906, 4; C.A.B., xix, June 1906, 94; Spectator [Hamilton], 23 Dec., 1907, 1; inf. Robert Hamilton, Hamilton, Ont.)
GARTH STREET SOUTH, at Aberdeen Avenue, residence for William Gastle, 1906 (Spectator [Hamilton], 30 May 1906, 8; inf. Robert Hamilton, Hamilton, Ont.)
ABERDEEN AVENUE, between Kent Street and Queen Street, residence for Kirwan Martin, 1906 (Spectator [Hamilton], 23 June 1906, 1 and 8; inf. Robert Hamilton, Hamilton, Ont.)
SAVOY THEATRE, Merrick Street, 1906 (C.A.B., xix, June 1906, 94)
POLICE STATION NO. 3, King William Street at Mary Street, 1906 (C.R., xvii, 17 Oct. 1906, 2, t.c.)
HERKIMER STREET BAPTIST CHURCH, Locke Street South at Melbourne Street, 1907 (C.A.B., xx, June 1907, 103)
CANADA STEEL GOODS CO., Arthur Street, factory, 1907; addition 1913 (C.R., xviii, 24 July 1907, 2; xxvii, 8 Jan. 1913, 67)
PICTON PUBLIC SCHOOL, Catharine Street North at Picton Street North, addition, 1908; addition 1920 (inf. from Hamilton Public Board)
SOPHIA PUBLIC SCHOOL, Strathcona Avenue North at Lamoreaux Street, addition 1908 (inf. from Hamilton Public School Board)
SPECTATOR PRINTING CO., James Street South near Main Street, offices, gymnasium and assembly hall for Southam Ltd., 1909 (C.R., xviii, 17 March 1909, 21)
ABERDEEN AVENUE, residence for R.B. Griffiths, 1909 (Spectator [Hamilton], 21 July 1909, 1; inf. Robert Hamilton, Hamilton, Ont.)
ABERDEEN AVENUE, residence for Alex G. Osborne, 1909 (Spectator [Hamilton], 21 July 1909, 1; inf. Robert Hamilton, Hamilton, Ont.)
GIBSON SCHOOL, Barton Street East at Gibson Avenue, addition, 1909; addition 1913 (inf. Hamilton Public School Board)
I.O.O.F. TEMPLE, Gore Street, east of Hughson Street, 1910 (C.R., xxv, 7 June 1911, 66)
HAMILTON GENERAL HOSPITAL, Barton Street East at Victoria Avenue North, addition, 1911; additions, 1914 (C.R., xxv, 12 April 1911, 53, t.c.; xxviii, 18 Feb. 1914, 73)
RAVENSCLIFFE AVENUE, residence for Reginald R. Wallace, Manager of the Bank of Montreal, 1911 (C.R., xxv, 7 June 1911, 61)
OTIS FENSOM ELEVATOR CO., Victoria Avenue North, factory, 1911 (C.R., xxv, 2 Aug. 1911, 63)
TALLMAN BRASS CO., Wilson Street at Sanford Avenue North, factory, 1911; addition 1917 (C.R., xxv, 16 Aug. 1911, 63)
KING GEORGE SCHOOL, Gage Avenue North near Cannon Street East, 1911-12 (C.R., xxv, 30 Aug. 1911, 61)
CANADIAN KNITTING CO., Catharine Street North at Burlington Street East, factory, 1911 (C.R., xxv, 25 Oct. 1911, 64)
HENDRIE CARTAGE CO., Cannon Street East near John Street North, 1912 (C.R., xxvi, 14 Feb. 1912, 68)
SHERMAN AVENUE SOUTH, near Cumberland Avenue, residence for Charles Gardiner, 1912 (C.R., xxvi, 21 Feb. 1912, 65)
RAVENSCLIFFE AVENUE, residence for Henry B. Witton, c. 1912 (inf. from Arthur Wallace, Hamilton)
CENTRAL FIRE STATION, John Street North at King William Street, 1912 (C.R., xxvi, 13 March 1912, 66)
EMPIRE THEATRE, Barton Street East at Leeming Street, 1912 (C.R., xxvi, 27 March 1912, 66)
ST. GILES PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH, Main Street East at Holton Avenue South, 1912-13 (C.R., xxvi, 17 Jan. 1912, 72; Const., ix, Dec. 1916, 418-20, illus. & descrip.)
HESS STREET PUBLIC SCHOOL, addition, 1913 (inf. from Hamilton Public School Board)
TURNBULL BLOCK, Barton Street East near Earl Street, a 3 storey block of stores and apartments for William K. Turnbull, 1913-14 (C.R., xxviii, 12 March 1913, 71-72; inf. Robert Hamilton, of Hamilton, Ont.)
EARL KITCHENER PUBLIC SCHOOL, Dundurn Street South at Homewood Avenue, 1914-15 (inf. from Hamilton Public School Board)
HERKIMER APARTMENTS, Bay Street South at Herkimer Street, 1914 (C.R., xxviii, 1 April 1914, 81)
MOUNTAIN SANATORIUM, Scenic Drive, a Tuberculosis Infirmary for the Hamilton Health Association, 1914-15 (Const., x, June 1917, 203-05, illus. & descrip.)
HAMPTON COURT APARTMENTS, East Avenue North at King William Street, 1914-15 (C.R., xxviii, 21 Oct. 1914, 63, t.c.)
MOUNT HAMILTON HOSPITAL, Mountain Park Avenue at Sherman Avenue, 1915-16 (Const., x, June 1917, 196-202, illus. & descrip.; dwgs. at OA, Souter & Lenz Coll., 697; Mark Osbaldeston, Unbuilt Hamilton, 2016, 85, illus.)
TECHNICAL SCHOOL, Wentworth Street North, near Cannon Street East, 1917 (Const., xii, Nov. 1919, 336-9, 361, illus. & descrip.)
LLOYD GEORGE SCHOOL, Beach Road at Agincourt Avenue, 1917-18; addition 1924-25 (inf. from Hamilton Public School Board)

(works outside Hamilton)

GALT, ONT., Collegiate Institute, Water Street North, 1905 (C.R., xv, 15 Feb. 1905, 1, t.c.; dwgs. at Waterloo County Board of Education, Kitchener)
KINCARDINE, ONT., additions and alterations to High School, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 15 March 1905, 2, t.c.)
OWEN SOUND, ONT., Sunday School for Knox Presbyterian Church, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 26 April 1905, 2)
TORONTO, ONT., residence for Fred W.H. Coles, Oaklands Avenue at Cottingham Street, 1907 (Toronto b.p. 7163, 25 April 1907)
ST. CATHARINES, ONT., Alexandra Public School, Henry Street, 1909 (E. Julian et al, St. Catharines: Our Built Heritage, 2005, 128, illus.)
GRIMSBY, ONT., Parish Hall for St. Andrew's Anglican Church, Main Street West, 1910-12 (The Independent [Grimsby], 6 Feb. 1922, 1 & 7, historical article on the church; History of St. Andrew's Church 1794-1969, illus.; inf. Robert Hamilton, Hamilton, Ont)
GALT, ONT., The Galt Club, Dickson Street, 1911 (C.R., xxv, 3 May 1911, 60, t.c.)
BARRIE, ONT., major addition to Barrie Collegiate Institute, 1911-12 (Engineering & Contracting [Chicago], xxxvi, 18 Oct. 1911, 43)


HAMILTON, ONT., The Hamilton Club, Main Street East at James Street, rebuilding of the original 1882 building, with new facade, 1906. Stewart & Witton were one of three architects invited to submit plans for major additions and rebuilding of the existing structure. The winner was John M. Lyle (Mark Osbaldeston, Unbuilt Hamilton, 2016, 104-05, illus. & descrip.)
HAMILTON, ONT., Public Library, 1910. Stewart & Witton submitted a classically inspired Beaux Arts design for which they received the Third Prize (Const., iii, Sept. 1910, 52, illus.; Mark Osbaldeston, Unbuilt Hamilton, 2016, 106-10, illus. & descrip.). Walter Pavey was declared winner, but the commission later went to A.W. Peene