John Morris, Architect

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London, England; Ottawa, Canada; Lincoln, Nebraska

An 1869 advertisement in the Nebraska Statesman states: “John Morris, Architect and Superintendent, Lincoln, Nebraska, late of London, England, subsequently Superintendent of Government Buildings in Canada and Architect of new State House in Nebraska.”[2] This, then, is probably the same John Morris who designed the 1841 extension to Trinity Congregational Chapel in London, as well as a number of terraces along East India Dock Road in London from 1851-1859. Those designed from 1854 on were credited to John Morris & Son, including those at 85-87 East India Dock Road, described as “…specimens of the unappealing style of the local architectural firm of John Morris & Son[.]”[5]

Morris was working in Ottawa in 1861, and in Lincoln, Nebraska from 1868-1869, but no further reference to him or his career has been found, including searches of the federal census in Cook County, Illinois in 1860, 1870, and 1880 (see note [a]), and in Nebraska in 1860 and 1870.

This page is a contribution to the publication, Place Makers of Nebraska: The Architects. See the format and contents page for more information on the compilation and page organization.

Compiled Nebraska Directory Listings

Educational & Professional Associations

ca. 1841-1854: architect, London, England.[5]

ca. 1854-1859: architect and partner, John Morris & Son, London, England.[5]

1861: clerk of government works, Ottawa, Canada.[4]

1869: architect, Lincoln, Nebraska.[2]

Buildings & Projects

First State Capitol (1868-1869), 15th & J Sts, Lincoln, Nebraska.[1][2][a][b]


a. Mistakenly attributed to James Morris, Chicago, Illinois; in Oliver Pollak, reference [1].

b. Contractor, Joseph Ward.[3]


1. Pollak, Oliver B., Nebraska Courthouses: Contention, Compromise, and Community [Images of America Series] (Chicago: Arcadia Publishing, 2002), 11. [725.1.P771n]

2. Advertisement, Nebraska Statesman (May 1, 1869).

3. The Nebraska Commonwealth (May 8, 1869).

4. Elizabeth L. Hunter, Head, Reference Department, Ottawa Public Library, to John Q. Magie, II, Nebraska State Historical Society, February 20, 1968. In Nebraska State Historical Society, Museum Files.

5. “East India Dock Road, North side: Nos 1-301 (and Nos 2-50),” Survey of London Vol. 43 and 44 (Poplar, Blackwall and Isle of Dogs, 1994), 127-147, accessed September 5, 2012. URL:

Other Sources

L. E. C. [Louis E. Cropsey], "Removal of the Capital from Omaha to Lincoln--The Old State House," Nebraska State Journal (January 18, 1884): 6.

Page Citation

D. Murphy, “John Morris, Architect,” in David Murphy, Edward F. Zimmer, and Lynn Meyer, comps. Place Makers of Nebraska: The Architects. Lincoln: Nebraska State Historical Society, February 17, 2015. Accessed, April 20, 2021.

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