M. Edmunds Dunlap was born in Philadelphia and educated at the Central Manual Training School, followed by the engineering program at Drexel Institute from 1898 to 1901, and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and the T-Square Club Atelier from 1902 to 1906. In 1906 he received the Cresson Traveling Scholarship, enabling him to study at the American Academy in Rome. During the time that he studied at Drexel and the Pennsylvania Academy, he maintained a day job in various architectural firms, including that of Frederick Mann, David K. Boyd, Wilson Eyre, Rankin & Kellogg, and Brockie & Hastings.
Upon his return from Rome, Dunlap was employed by John T. Windrim, remaining there until 1908, when he moved to the firm owned by the brothers Seymour and Paul A. Davis. When the brothers dissolved their partnership, Dunlap remained with Paul A. Davis and by 1919 had been made a principal, thus revising the firm name to Davis & Dunlap. The partners were joined around 1924 by William Pope Barney, and the firm became Davis, Dunlap & Barney. When Barney resigned from the firm around 1930, the name reverted to Davis & Dunlap and remained in that form even though Davis retired in 1932. In 1945 the name of John S. Carver was added. The firm reverted to Davis & Dunlap in 1953, and was continued until 1958 by Dunlap's son, John F., who had joined the office after completing his architecture degree in 1935.
Dunlap joined the AIA in 1920 and was elected to fellowship status in 1943 and emeritus in 1958. He was an active member of the T-Square Club and the Philadelphia Chapter of the AIA and received a number of awards during his career, including the Gold Medal of the Architectural League of New York in 1929.
Clubs and Membership Organizations
- American Institute of Architects (AIA)
- Philadelphia Chapter, AIA
- T-Square Club
- Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts
- Drexel Institute
- American Academy in Rome
- T-Square Club Atelier
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