Dictionary of Irish Architects 1720 - 1940

Architect, of Dublin. Frank Sparrow, elder son of Edward and Annie Sparrow of Dublin, was born on 9 November 1878.(1) After a year at the Royal College of Science, he became RICHARD CAULFIELD ORPEN' RICHARD CAULFIELD ORPEN' s first pupil(2) in 1897. From 1900 until 1907 he was an assistant first to Orpen and then to LAURENCE ALOYSIUS MCDONNELL LAURENCE ALOYSIUS MCDONNELL . When the architectural department of the Local Government Board was established in 1907 under RICHARD O'BRIEN SMYTH RICHARD O'BRIEN SMYTH , Sparrow was appointed an inspector, a post which entailed visiting labourers' cottage schemes throughout the country. Soon after the outbreak of World War I - and despite his Quaker background - he joined the Trinity College Officers Training Corps and later obtained a lieutenancy in the Royal Engineers. After a period of training in Wales, he was sent to the front, where died on 13 August 1916.(3) He was buried in the Dive Copse British Cemetery.(4)

Sparrow was a keen member of the AAI and an active participant in the Association's social events. His obituarist in the Irish Builder recalled 'his happy vein of humour, his skill and talent with the banjo, and his ability to improvise at the shortest notice a topical comic song relative to Institute or Association affairs, sung in capital style by himself, or in conjunction with Mr Page Dickinson as a duet'.(5) In 1912 he won the the Architects' Golfing Society's O'Brien Smyth Trophy .(6)

Arthur John Sparrow, ARIBA, an architect working from a London address who was a member of the RIAI from 1917 until circa 1925, was possibly a relation.

AAI: elected member, 1896; awarded first prize in class of construction, 1898;(7) wins travelling studentship with measured drawings of St Patrick's Cathedral; delivers paper on 'The Education of the Ideal Architect' to Design Club, 1907;(8) hon. treasurer, 1908-9;(9) vice-president, 1912-13.(10)

RIAI: elected member, 19 Dec 1907, having been proposed by Richard Caulfield Orpen, seconded by LOUIS EDWARD HALL DEANE LOUIS EDWARD HALL DEANE , seconded by RICHARD O'BRIEN SMYTH.  RICHARD O'BRIEN SMYTH. (11)
ICEI: elected associate, 5 February 1908.(12)

Addresses: (13) Work: 9 Hume Street, 1907;(14) Local Government Board, 1908-1914.
Home: 6 Warrenpoint, Clontarf, 1903; 29 Kenilworth Road, Rathgar, <=1906->=1908; County Club, Limerick, 1915.



All information in this entry not otherwise attributed is from ICEI admissions applications, IV, 47, and the obituaries of Sparrow in IB 18, 2 Sep 1916, 435, and AAI Green Book (1917), 10-11, which are both accompanied by the same portrait photograph. Another brief obituary is in JRIAI 23 (1915-16), 327.

www.cwgc.org (website of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission); his family was connected with the men's outfitting firm of Sparrow & Son of Sackville Street Lower and later of South Great George's Street. The directories suggest that he lived in Clontarf with his widowed mother, who was involved in the family business in South Great George's St.
JRIAI (1917), 12.
See note 1, above.
See note 1, above.
One of these songs appears in IB 47, 2 Dec 1905, 862.
IB 54, 9 Nov 1912, 635.
IB 40, 15 May 1898, 74.
IB 49, 30 Nov 1907, 817-8.
Lists of past office bearers in AAI Green Books; he does not appear in these as hon. secretary as stated in IB obituary.
See note 10, above.
RIAI minutes, 19 Dec 1907, 433,435;  IAA, RIAI office archives (Acc. 93/136), membership forms 1878- 1909 (extremely fragile).
TICEI 34 (1907-8), ?.
From lists of AAI members in AAI Green Books, unless othewise indicated.
See note 3, above.

2 work entries listed in chronological order for SPARROW, FRANK EDWARD

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Date: 1907
Nature: New tea room and increased lavatory premises bing built for Johnston, Mooney & O'Brien. Contractor: H. & J. Martin.
Refs: IB 49, 24 Aug 1907, 593

Date: 1907-8
Nature: Block of dwellings & shops, for 'Mr O'Brien, 81 Camden Street'. (i.e. of Johnston, Mooney & O'Brien, 87 Camden St.?) Builder: P. Shortall.
Refs: IB 49, 24 Aug 1907, 593; 50, 27 Jun 1908, 406

Author Title Date Details
Sparrow, Frank Edward 'The Education of the Ideal Architect' 1907 IB 49, 30 Nov 1907, 817-8. (Paper read to AAI Design Club, 1907.)