Stewarts and Lloyds Building
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John Dowell Ellis, the Manager of the Johannesburg branch of Stewarts & LLoyds (S.A. Ltd) in 1909, signed the municipal submission drawings for the building. Ellis was born in Herefordshire, England and educated at Allesley College in Warwickshire. After completing his Mechanical Engineering apprenticeship with Messrs Robey & Co in Lincoln in 1886, he came to the Transvaal, where he was for a time the Mechanical Engineer at the Willows Silver Mine, near Pretoria. Ellis was an active member of the Johannesburg Town Council in 1909. Ref: South African Who's Who 1909: South African Who's Who Publishing Co, Durban: pg 143.
A contemporary photograph album, compiled by a representative of Stewarts and Lloyds South Africa Limited - possibly J D Ellis himself - includes a photograph (on the rear of page 5 of the album) of the "Johannesburg New Office in construction March 1909." Ref: Stewarts and Lloyds South Africa Limited, Photograph album covering the years c1905 to c1921, unpublished. Collection: W Martinson.
By 1919 the building was known as 'The Dowell Building.' Ref: SA Who's Who Social, Business & Farming 1919/20: pg 653.
By 1927 the Stewarts and LLoyds building was known as GENERAL MOTORS HOUSE and one of the main Tenants was Siemens. Ref: Portion of a scanned advertisement for Siemens (SA) Ltd from the South African Who's Who (Social & Business) 1927-28; Ken Donaldson, Cape Town, 1927: pg 589.
Only the circular corner, surmounted by a handsome dome, survives intact - unfortunately both side wings have been demolished - albeit with the proviso they be reconstructed when the development of the city block proceeds. The balance of the city block is currently used as a car park.
[William MARTINSON, October 2010]
All truncated references not fully cited below are those of Joanna Walker's original text and cited in full in the 'Bibliography' entry of the Lexicon.