Marcus Burrowes

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Marcus R. Burrowes (1874 – 1953) was a notable Detroit architect. He served one year in the position of president of the Michigan Society of Architects and was a fellow of the American Institute of Architects (AIA). He was widely known in southeast Michigan, especially during the second and third decades of the twentieth century, for his recreation of English Revival style buildings.


Burrowes was born in Tonawanda, N.Y., near Buffalo. Burrowes attended the Denver Art Academy, where he attended lectures and received instruction by architects of note, as well as serving an apprenticeship to a leading architectural firm in Denver. In the 1890s, Burrowes work took him to Canada, where he was employed in the chief architects office of the Dominion at Ottawa, specializing in post office buildings. From Canada, he crossed the Detroit River to Detroit, a place suitable for an entrepreneurial architect like Burrowes.

Initially, Burrowes worked in the offices of Albert Kahn. In 1907, he joined the firm of Stratton and Baldwin for two years, which put him into contact with leading figures in the Arts and Crafts movement in Detroit, including Kahn, William B. Stratton, Frank C. Baldwin, and George Booth. Through Stratton's connections with Mary Chase Perry Stratton of Pewabic Pottery, Burrowes gained exposure to this important Detroit-based firm as well.

However, deciding his future was to be in independent practice, Burrowes formed the firm of Burrowes and Wells with Dalton R. Wells. By 1914, Burrowes was operating under his own name. In 1920 he joined with Frank Eurich, who had received training in the architecture program from Cornell University. Together, Burrowes and Eurich designed many homes in Grosse Pointe and Detroit, as well as several libraries and municipal buildings.

During his lifetime, Burrowes was recognized by his fellow architects. He served as president of the Detroit Chapter of the American Institute of Architects in 1916 and 1917; vice-president of the Detroit Chapter in 1923, and secretary from 1911 to 1915. He served as president of the Michigan Society of Architects in 1923 and 1924. In 1940, he was made a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects and became Emeritus in 1952. He was a member of the Episcopal Church and the Detroit Athletic Club.

Burrowes died at the age of 79 at his home in London, Ontario, which he had retired to eight months previous. His obituary in the Detroit Free Press in 1953, stated how "he designed more than 1,000 structures in and near Detroit during his long career."

Selected commissions

Sortable table
Name City State/Country Year Designed Built Other Information Image
Hiram Walker and Sons, Customs Office Building Walkerville Ontario, Canada 1910 (Burrowes and Wells)
Cranbrook Service Quarters, Garages Bloomfield Hills Michigan 1911
H.R. Dingwell Home Walkerville Ontario, Canada 1912 Devonshire Road
Hiram Walker Home Walkerville Ontario, Canada 1912 Devonshire Road
Cranbrook Greek Theatre Bloomfield Hills Michigan 1915-1916
Warren Booth Home Bloomfield Hills Michigan Lone Pine Road
Grace Booth Wallace Home
Brookside School Bloomfield Hills Michigan Evergreen Road(with Henry Scripps Booth)
W.G. Morley House Bloomfield Hills Michigan Lone Pine Road
David A. Brown House Detroit Michigan East Boston Boulevard
C.B. Tuttle House Detroit Michigan Hamilton Drive
Victor F. Dewey House Detroit Michigan Hamilton Drive
A.L. McCarthy House Detroit Michigan Hamilton Drive
William Locke House Detroit Michigan Hamilton Drive
Percy A. Barnard House Detroit Michigan Fairway Drive
Warren Booth Home Detroit Michigan 1922 2950 Iroquois
Henry L. Pierson, Sr. House Detroit Michigan 1915 2530 Iroquois
Mrs. Walter Jennings' Home Detroit Michigan 2455 Iroquois
Herman Strasburg House Detroit Michigan 1915 5415 Cass
2243 Iroquois Detroit Michigan 1917
Newton Annis Home Detroit Michigan 2168 Burns
1432 Burns Detroit Michigan
Miss Jeannette McMillan Liggett Home Detroit Michigan 2501 Burns
S. Kemp Pittman, Sr. Home Detroit Michigan 1912 1782 Seminole
2454 Seminole Detroit Michigan
Paul Gray House Detroit Michigan 1910 1710 Seminole
Ralph Harmon Booth Home Grosse Pointe Michigan 1924 315 Washington
Berrien C. Eaton Home Grosse Pointe Michigan Bishop Road
Edward S. Caulkins Home Grosse Pointe Michigan Hendrie Lane
H. Robert Stoepel Home Grosse Pointe Michigan
L.T. Bulkley Home Grosse Pointe Michigan Edgemont Park
Charles B. Crouse Home, Cadieux and Maumee Grosse Pointe Michigan
Edward G. Burlage Home Grosse Pointe Michigan Harvard Road
Henry T. Cole Home Grosse Pointe Michigan Lakeland
Addition to Palmer Sherman House Farmington Michigan Farmington Road
Burbrook Farmington Michigan 1924 residence of Marcus R. Burrowes, 24300 Locust Drive
David Gray House Farmington Hills Michigan in present-day Heritage Park
Windy Hill Farmington Michigan Kirby White House, Eleven Mile Road
Cottage, Biddestone Woods estate Farmington Michigan 1937
C.W. Hubbell Milford Michigan 1923 1937
Wayne County Training School Northville Township Michigan 1923
  • Gabriel Richard Library, Stoepel and Grand River, Detroit
  • Redford Village Hall (Redford Library), Six Mile and Grand River, 1928
  • Duffield Branch of the Detroit Public Library, West Grand Boulevard and Lunedin
  • Francis Parkman Branch of the Detroit Public Library, 1726 Oakman, Blvd, Detroit, 1931
  • McGregor Library, Woodward Avenue, Highland Park (Local associated architects. Building designed by Tilton & Githens of New York)
Schools and Civic Complexes
  • Wayne County Training School, near Northville
  • Barber School, Highland Park
  • Highland Park Athletic Fieldhouse, Highland Park
  • Grosse Pointe High School, Grosse Pointe Farms
  • Grosse Pointe Cottage School, Grosse Pointe
  • Grosse Pointe Hunt Club Clubhouse, Grosse Pointe
  • Grosse Pointe Golf Clubhouse, Grosse Pointe
  • Peoples' State Bank, Detroit
  • Remodeling of Greenmeade, Eight Mile Road, Livonia
  • Grand Lawn Cemetery entrance, Grand River just east of Telegraph Road
  • Methodist Children's Village, Six Mile Road, Redford
  • YMCA, Highland Park
  • YWCA, Highland Park
  • Grosse Pointe Municipal Building
  • Springwells Town Hall, later Dearborn City Hall
  • Birmingham Civic Complex, Birmingham, 1921-1922
Starr Commonwealth, outside Albion, Michigan

Design of 11 buildings and campus landscape plan

  • Newton Hall, Starr Commonwealth, 1915
  • Emily Jewell Clark Building, Starr Commonwealth, 1917
  • Wilcox Cottage, Starr Commonwealth
  • Hillside, later Payne Family Cottage, Starr Commonwealth, 1920
  • Webster Hall, Starr Commonwealth, 1934
  • Inglis-Medelssohn Cottage, Starr Commonwealth
  • Chapel in the Woods, Starr Commonwealth, 1949
  • Breuckner Museum and Art Gallery, Starr Commonwealth, 1952
  • Designs for Candler Hall, Kresge Cottage, Norton Family Cottage, Starr Commonwealth - all built after Burrowes death


Fox, Jean M. "Marcus Burrowes, English Revival Architect", Monograph #2, Farmington Hills Historical Commission, 1992.

Wilson, Tim Wayne County Training School

Preserve Detroit, []

External links