Robert E. Peterson, architect and contractor, worked not only independently as an architecct, but also for the Bell Telephone Company and later in the decorative glass business. He was born in Philadelphia, the son of Robert E. and Ellen Ridgway Deacon Peterson; and he died in Santa Monica, CA. He entered the University of Pennsylvania in 1882, transferred to the freshman class in 1883 and left during the following year. In 1885 he attended classes at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, and by 1891 was employed as a draftsman for Wilson Bros.. Notices of his first independent work occur in 1895 issues of the Philadelphia Real Estate Record and Builders Guide when Peterson was working from an office in Wayne, PA. By 1896 Peterson was in partnership with John J. Dull, using the name Dull & Peterson. This office then expanded to include Crawford Coates. 1899 found Peterson back in independent practice, in which he continued at least through 1903, only associated with Harry Macomb in 1902. There followed a period duirng which Peterson disappeared from the Philadelphia city directories for several years, reappearing in 1906 as a clerk, in 1908 as an architect, and in 1917 as a representative of C. F. Hubbs & Co., paper merchants. After 1917 Peterson disappeared from the city directories again; however, information from the University of Pennsylvania Archives indicates that by 1926 Peterson had entered the decorative glass business.
Exactly when Peterson moved to California is unknown.
Sandra L. Tatman.
- University of Pennsylvania
- Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts
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