Monday, July 9, 2012

WC Albrant I, Biography...

We are working on the biography of William C. Albrant I, who was a well-known architect in the Fargo, ND area in the early 1900's. This is a work in progress, and additional information will be added as it becomes available. 


William Colston Albrant
Born: June 24, 1871
Died: August 3, 1905

            Father: Azasiah Albrant. Born: 1834. Origin: German. Occupation: Farmer.
            Mother: Susanna Albrant. Born 1843. Origin: Scottish

            Anne E; born 1861
            James; born 1863 (twin)
            Mary; born 1863 (twin)
            Kattie; born 1865
            Charles E; born 1869
            Robert D; born 1875
            Richard J; born 1876
            Jessie A; born 1879

ALBRANT, William C. (1871-1905), an architect of Fargo, North Dakota, was born in Winchester, Ontario on 24 June 1871 and moved west after 1895 to briefly engage in farming activity before registering at North Dakota State University in the Division of Mechanical Arts (a forerunner of the School of Architecture at that institution). He opened his own office in Fargo, North Dakota in 1900, and obtained his first important commission in Canada in 1904 for the City Hall, MOOSE JAW, SASK. (Moose Jaw Times, 5 Jan. 1905). This imposing but somewhat eclectic work, with its domed tower, remained a distinctive civic landmark in that city for nearly a decade until the completion of the Post Office in 1913. Albrant also designed N.J. Porter's Photographic Studio, MOOSE JAW, SASK., (1905; altered), and was responsible for several major designs in Fargo including First Baptist Church (1904), the Normal School at Maryville State College (1904), and the Carnegie Library buildings at Fargo, Valley City and at Grandin, North Dakota. He died suddenly on 3 August 1905 at Fargo, N.D. (obituary in Fargo Forum, 3 & 4 Aug. l905; inf. from Ronald L.M. Ramsay, Fargo, N.D.).

            Additional Links:

Carnegie Library (now known as Putnam Hall):

            Northern School Supply (NDSU downtown campus):

Three buildings designed by him are currently listed on the National Register of Historic Places:

Mayville Public Library (see page 4 of document):

            Union Block (see page 3 of document):

            Laura Building (see page 3 of document):

In 1890, William C. and his mother, Susanna, immigrated to the USA, followed in 1893 by his brother, Richard J. Albrant.

In 1904 he married Francis Ellen Gillespie. She was born in 1874 in Ireland and immigrated to this country in 1887 with her parents, Huburt (born 1838) and Fannie E. Gillespie (born 1838). Huburt and Fannie, both born in Ireland, had 10 children -- only 4 were still living in 1900.