Historic Pelham

Presenting the rich history of Pelham, NY in Westchester County: current historical research, descriptions of how to research Pelham history online and genealogy discussions of Pelham families.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Obituary of Architect Frederick Carles Merry

Frederick Carles Merry was a well-known architect and civil engineer in New York City during the late 19th century. For a number of years he lived in Pelham Manor. While there he designed the original clubhouse of the Manor Club, Pelham Hall, the Pelhamville School that replaced the little red school house in 1888, the Nanette Bolton Memorial Chapel at Christ Church and many private residences. He laid out the property at Pelham Heights including engineering the roads and planning and building the first five homes of that lovely neighborhood. Merry also designed the Parish House of Trinity Church, the National Bank building and the Lambden Store in New-Rochelle.

He died in New York City on March 4, 1900. Below is his obituary that appeared in the New-York Tribune the following day.


Frederick Carles Merry, a well known architect of this city, after a lingering illness, expired at his home, at No. 219 West One-hundred-and-thirty-fifth-st., last evening at 6 o'clock. He was born at Edgbarton, Birmingham, England, on June 16, 1837. He came with his father, Anthony T. Merry, to this country when he was about ten years old, and was reared near Camden, N. J., where his father became proprietor of the chemical works. He studied in Philadelphia, and took up the professions of architecture and civil engineering. His first important work was the laying out of a portion of Fairmount Park. After the fire at St. John's, N. B., he did considerable work in restoring the public and private buildings of that city.

He afterward returned to New-York, and purchased property in Pelham Manor and established his home there. The clubhouse, Pelham Hall and many private residences are the fruit of his architectural skill, while the fine roads in that vicinity also bear the marks of his work. He built the parish house of Trinity Church, the National Bank and the Lambden store at New-Rochelle. He also laid out the property at Pelham Heights, engineering the roads, planning and building the first five dwellings of that picturesque hamlet.

In the city a number of public buildings are monuments to his work, among them Chickering Hall, the New-York Hospital, St. Michael's Protestant Episcopal Parish House and the Williamsburg Fire Insurance Building.

At Milton, Penn., he built a fine private house, a firehouse at City Island, and at the time of his death was engaged in building a hospital at Englewood, N. J.

He was for many years one of the vestrymen of Christ Church, Pelham Manor. He belonged to the Masonic order, New-Rochelle Lodge.

Mr. Merry leaves a widow, who is a daughter of the Rev. D. N. Freeland, with a daughter and two sons and one sister at Merchantvile, N. J."

Source: Frederick Carles Merry, New-York Tribune, Mar. 5, 1900, p. 7, col. 4.

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