Sunset House
Built 1903
Original Name in 1903 - "Burcotte"
Designed by Philip Coles Palin

1871 - 1957

Reprint from the Biographical Dictionary of ARCHITECTS IN CANADA 1800 - 1950
Robert G. Hill, Architect, FRAIC April 2009

PALIN, Philip Coles (1871-1957) was active in Collingwood, Ont. from 1900 until 1924. Born there on 29 July 1871, he was the son of Richard Palin (1835-1878), a qualified civil engineer who came to Canada from Chester, England. After receiving his early education in Collingwood, he moved to Toronto in 1889 where he is recorded in city directories as a draftsman for Gordon & Helliwell (in 1889-93) and he likely articled with that firm. By 1894 he was employed by the House & Land Investment Co. as a draftsman, but by 1897 he had left Toronto and opened an office in Rat Portage (now Kenora), Ontario (C.A.B., x, April 1897, 73; Rat Portage Miner, 4 Sept. 1897, advert.). He was not successful there; by 1898 he had returned to Toronto and in 1899 he joined the office of Charles J. Gibson as draftsman.
In early 1900 he moved back to his home town and opened an office under his own name, and continued to work there until 1924. He received several commissions for private residences and small institutional works, but his most important commission, obtained through political patronage, was the design of the federal Post Office & Customs House (1914-15), a a classically composed Beaux-Arts landmark that was a departure from the style mandated by Dept. of Public Works in Ottawa, then headed by David Ewart. Palin continued to work in Collingwood until 1924, but only a few works by him have been identified from this period.
By 1925 he was once again living and working in Toronto, this time as a staff architect with the Bell Telephone Co., where he remained until early 1930. The financial collapse of late 1929 may have prompted him to move to Ottawa during the following year, where he was recorded as an architectural draftsman in the Engineering Services Branch of the Dept. of National Defence (Ottawa City Directory, 1935). He retired in 1945 and died in Toronto on 23 February 1957 and was later buried at All Saints Cemetery in Collingwood (obituary Enterprise-Bulletin [Collingwood], 28 February 1957, 5; biog. and port. Collingwood Bulletin, 20 Dec. 1906, Barrie Gazette’s Magazine of Industry, Sept. 1911, 38; inf. Mrs. Ann-Elizabeth Palin, Innisfil, Ont.)

 

 

Works in Collingwood

COLLINGWOOD MEAT CO., major addition to factory, 1900 (C.R., xi, 14 Feb. 1900, 2)
STE. MARIE STREET, residence for T.N. Brown, 1900 (Collingwood Bulletin, 26 Oct. 1900, 8, descrip.)
HURONTARIO STREET, residence and office for Dr. Joseph R. Arthur, 1900 (C.R., xi, 31 Oct. 1900, 2; 7 Nov. 1900, 2, descrip.; Enterprise & Messenger [Collingwood], 1 Nov. 1900, 8, descrip.)
MINNESOTA STREET, at Huron Street, residence for W. Bryan, 1900-01 (C.R., xi, 7 Nov. 1900, 2)
SECOND STREET, residence for Michael P. Byrnes, 1901 (C.R., xii, 3 April 1901, 2)
unnamed street, residence for John Foster, 1901 (C.R., xii, 3 April 1901, 2)
MINNESOTA STREET, 'The Birches', residence for John McGill, 1901 (Enterprise & Messenger [Collingwood], 11 April 1901, 8)
ELGIN STREET, residence for R.E. Fair, 1902 (Collingwood Bulletin, 29 May 1902, 8; C.R., xiii, 4 June 1902, 3)
PINE STREET, at Third Street, 'Thurso', a residence for Dr. Donald McKay, 1902 (C.R., xiii, 20 Aug. 1902, 2, t.c.; Laurel Lane-Moore, Collingwood: Historic Homes and Buildings, 1989, 92-3, illus. & descrip.)
ONTARIO STREET, at St. Paul Street, residence for W.B. Hamilton, 1903 (Collingwood Bulletin, 9 April 1903, 1)
MAPLE STREET, residence for Alex Johnson, 1903 (Collingwood Bulletin, 9 April 1903, 1)
ELGIN STREET, residence for D. Wilkinson, 1903 (Collingwood Bulletin, 9 April 1903, 1; C.R., xiv, 15 April 1903, 4)
BEECH STREET, residence for H.B. McFadzen, 1903 (Collingwood Bulletin, 9 April 1903, 1; C.R., xiv, 15 April 1903, 4)
FIFTH STREET, at Oak Street, residence for Alexander Cooper, 1903 (Collingwood Bulletin, 9 April 1903, 1; C.R., xiv, 15 April 1903, 4)
NIAGARA STREET, 'Kentraw',  residence for Godfrey E. McLean, 1903 (Collingwood Bulletin, 9 April 1903, 1; C.R., xiv, 15 April 1903, 4)
NIAGARA STREET, 'Burcotte', a residence for the architect, 1903 (brick datestone "1903" at front entrance of the residence; Barrie Gazette's Magazine of Industry, Sept. 1911, 38; inf. Carson Wiebe, Collingwood)
Unnamed street, residence for M.M. Todd, 1903 (C.R., xiv, 15 April 1903, 4)
Unnamed street, residence for R.W. Crompton, manager of the Bank of Montreal, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 29 March 1905, 2, t.c.)
Unnamed street, residence for J. Woolner, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 10 May 1905, 6)
PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH, major addition to the Sunday School, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 5 July 1905, 7)
GENERAL & MARINE HOSPITAL, major addition, 1906 (Collingwood Bulletin Industrial Number, 20 Dec. 1906, 10)
AGRICULTURAL HALL, 1909 (C.R., xxiii, 14 July 1909, 21)
ALL SAINTS ANGLICAN CHURCH, a Parish Hall for the church, 1911 (Barrie Gazette's Magazine of Industry, Sept. 1911, 38)
HURONTARIO STREET, Fire Hall, 1911 (C.R., xxv, 17 May 1911, 59)
FEDERAL BUILDING, for the Government of Canada, Hurontario Street, 1914-15 (Enterprise & Messenger [Collingwood], 29 April 1915, 3; Laurel Lane-Moore, Collingwood: Historic Homes and Buildings, 1989, 100-02, illus. & descrip.; signed drawings at Collingwood Museum)
MEMORIAL HALL, for the County Council, 1919 (C.R., xxxiii, 16 April 1919, 50)
IMPERIAL STEEL & WIRE CO., factory, 1920 (C.R., xxxiv, 18 Aug. 1920, 52, t.c.)

Works elsewhere

CREEMORE, ONT., residence for Alex Earl, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 10 May 1905, 6)
PARRY SOUND, ONT., residence for C. Begg, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 10 May 1905, 6)
NOTTAWA, ONT., residence for Walter Bristow, 1905 (C.R., xvi, 5 July 1905, 7)
TORONTO, ONT., Scott Knitting Co., Ryerson Avenue, 1909 (dwgs. at Toronto City Hall, Central Records Div.)
BARRIE, ONT., residence for Daniel J. Quinlan, Mulcaster Street, 1913 (Barrie Northern Advance, 1 May 1913, 8)
BARRIE, ONT., residence for Douglas M. Stewart, Blake Street, 1913 (Barrie Northern Advance, 1 May 1913, 8)
BARRIE, ONT., major alterations to residence for Mrs. Isobelle Laidlaw, Blake Street, 1913 (Barrie Northern Advance, 1 May 1913, 8)
CREEMORE, ONT., Public & Continuation School, 1917-18 (History of Education in Creemore & Surrounding Area, 1979, 25-7, illus.)

 

 

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Last Edited January 22, 2018

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