The domestic architecture of William Street-Wilson, 1889-1913.
Castle, Jenette Perree.
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The topic of this thesis is the Domestic Architecture of the Natal Architect, William Street-Wilson (1856-1928) and spans the period from 1889 to 1913. It is based on the original drawing collection which can be found in the Barrie Bierman Architectural Library, University of Natal. Street-Wilson carried out his architectural training in England, and the study sets out to identify the stylistic changes which took place within the Arts and Crafts Movement in England, to establish any English precedent in Street-Wilson domestic architecture in Natal. In order to contexturalise Street-Wilson's domestic architecture in Natal, an overview of the political, social, economic and architectural background is given prior to, and during the year of Street-Wilson's arrival in 1887. The drawing collection is set chronologically during the period of 1889-1913, against the political, social and economic background, in order to study the effect of such influences on the Street-Wilson's houses. The study defines and identifies the different components which compose the plan and then carries out an analysis of the plan, form and style of the different categories of house types, namely the typical single storey, villa/double storey and semi-detached house, to highlight the evolution of the house type from the late nineteenth century to the early twentieth century. Since the verandah is the common thread throughout the drawing collection, a special study explores its possible origin and application in a colonial context. Examples of detail drawings have been extracted from the drawing collection to illustrate construction techniques and typical detailing employed by Street-Wilson and his partners, accompanied by a brief history of building materials to contexturalise materials within the studied period. The evolution of services, pertaining to comfort and sanitation, have been examined and applied to the houses designed by Street-Wilson.