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Born: 3/17/1714, Died: 5/21/1797

Joseph Thornhill was the son of John and Elizabeth Thornhill, elder brother of master builder John Thornhill and uncle of master builder Joseph Thornhill, Jr.. As early as 1756 he was a resident of Philadelphia's Mulberry Ward and continued to live in that district throughout the Revolution. Prior to 1760 he married Martha Hubbs of Philadelphia, and prior to 1763 he had become a member of The Carpenters' Company. In the latter year he was appointed to the important Company committee that set the prices for carpentry work in Philadelphia.

A parishioner of Christ Church, Joseph together with John Thornhill was asked in 1741 if he would undertake the new steeple then to be erected. Christ Church journal records payments to Joseph Thornhill in 1744 and 1745. In 1775, Thornhill was a subscriber to the Philadelphia edition of Abraham Swan, The British Architect, the first book of architecture printed in America.

Written by Roger W. Moss.

Clubs and Membership Organizations

  • Carpenters' Company of Philadelphia

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