David Jerome Spence (1873-1955), was born in Louisville Kentucky. He studied architecture at M.I.T and at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris.He came to Montreal c1900, and became a member of l'Association des Architects de la Province du Quebec in 1901. Spence worked in partnership with S.A Finley between 1901 and 1913, and F.D. Mathias between 1937 and 1952. Between 1940 and 1945, while Mathias was called to war, the firm practised under the name of Spence, Mathias and Burge.
Frederick David Mathias was born in Montreal on March 2, 1913. He attended Selwyn House School, Montreal and Ashbury College, Ottawa. Mathias studied architecture at M.I.T. in Boston from 1931 to 1936, graduating in 1936. His thesis was a Recreational Centre for St. Helen's Island in Montreal. From 1936 to 1937 Mathias worked in the office of Sir Astin Webb in London, England. He joined Montreal architect D.J.Spence in 1937. Between 1940 and 1945 he joined the armed forces and fought in Italy. He returned to the firm (Spence, Mathias & Burge) in 1945. His work includes residential and commercial architecture. “The Well House,” 555 Victoria Ave., Westmount (1954) is included in Montréal’s Little Mountain / La Petite Montagne, a book that draws on the work of Montreal’s greatest architects. Mathias also designed numerous buildings for the Protestant School Board of Greater Montreal, the Phillips Square Building, and the façade of the Seagram’s Building on Peel Street. Fine architectural renderings by David Mathias in competition drawings at MIT and in project drawings, reflect the influence of his studies, and of the British architectural tradition learned in the office of Sir Astin Webb. David Mathias died in December 1997, at the age of 84.


Architctural drawings and paper files were donated to the John Bland Canadian Architecture Collection by Mrs. F. D. Mathias.


Architectural drawings and paper files, Dominion Wire Rope and Cable Company, Lachine, Quebec 1900, 1909, 1913, 1917, 1944, 1946, 1947, 1948, 1949.
2 ink on linen: 1 working drawing, 1 structural drawing. 43 ink and pencil on paper: 43 working drawings. 26 blueprints: 2 working drawings, 2o structural drawings, 4 mechanical / plumbing/ electrical drawings.


D.J. Spence
Finley and Spence
F. D. Mathias
Spence Mathias and Burge