Thomas Rowe

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For other people named Thomas Rowe, see Thomas Rowe (disambiguation).
Thomas Rowe - Architect
Thomas Rowe.jpg
Born (1829-07-20)20 July 1829
Penzance, Cornwall, England
Died 14 July 1899(1899-07-14) (aged 69)
Darling Point, New South Wales, Australia
Nationality British
Occupation Architect
Buildings Great Synagogue, Elizabeth Street, Sydney
Newington College, Stanmore
Sydney Hospital, Macquarie Street, Sydney
Projects Numerous Methodist churches

Thomas Rowe (20 July 1829 – 14 January 1899) was one of Australia's leading architects of the Victorian era.[1]


Thomas Rowe was born in Penzance, Cornwall, United Kingdom, the eldest son of Richard Rowe and Ursula Mumford, and attended Barnes Academy. At 15 he became a draftsman in his father's building business before the family emigrated to Australia in 1848. From 1857 he practised as an architect in Sydney, Bathurst, Orange, Newcastle and Goulburn. He was often successful in competitions and his firms built commercial premises, large houses and many Methodist churches. Rowe Street in Sydney is named after him. He died in 1899 in Mona, a heritage-listed[2] house in Darling Point, New South Wales. Rowe's son Harry Ruskin Rowe was also successful as an architect. One of his most significant achievements was the creaton in 1950 of Ruskin Rowe, an estate in Avalon, New South Wales. The estate still exists and is heritage-listed.[3]

Key works[edit]

(Many of the following buildings are heritage-listed):[4]

Architectural Partners[edit]

  • W.B.Field
  • Sydney Green
  • Alfred Spain[7]


  1. ^ M Freeland, Thomas Rowe, pp 68–69, Volume 6, Australian Dictionary of Biography (MUP, 1976)
  2. ^ State Heritage Website
  3. ^ State Heritage Website
  4. ^ The Heritage of Australia, Macmillan Company, 1981, pp. 2/34,38,60,61,81,95,99,174,252,260
  5. ^ Hawaii for visitors
  6. ^ M Berry, A History of Colonel Thomas Rowe (B Arch thesis, UNSW, 1969)
  7. ^ J M Freeland, The Making of a Profession (Syd, 1971)