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Male, born 1908-06-18, died 1996-12-23

Associated with the firms network

Harmon, Pray and Detrich, Architects; Naramore, Bain, Brady, and Johanson, (NBBJ)

Professional History


Civil Works Administration, Keosauqua, IA, 1933-1934.

Architect, United States Bureau of Reclamation, Guernsey, WY, 1934-1937.

Architectural Foreman, National Park Service, Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), Yellowstone, WY, 1937-1940. He worked as an "architectural foreman" at Yellowstone National Park according to the 1940 US Census. (See, Source Citation Year: 1940; Census Place: Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming; Roll: m-t0627-04577; Page: 4A; Enumeration District: 24-1, accessed 04/21/2018.)

Architect, Gates Rubber Company, Denver, CO, 1940-1941.

Architect, Sanderson and Porter, Charlotte, NC, 1941-1942.

Architect, Wyatt Cephus Hedrick, Architect, Fort Worth, TX, 1943. Both Roland Pray and his later business partner, Craig A. Harmon (1911- 1976) worked in the Office of Wyatt C. Hedrick (1888-1964) in Fort Worth, TX, in 1943.

Architect, Boeing Company, Seattle, WA, 1944.

Architect, Naramore, Brady, Bain and Johanson (NBBJ), Seattle, WA, 1945-1946.

Partner, Harmon, Pray and Detrich, Architects, Seattle, WA, 1948-1975.

Professional Activities

Member, American Institute of Architects (AIA). Pray joined the AIA in 1945.



B.S.Arch. Engineering, Iowa State College, Ames, IA, 1928-1932. At Iowa State, Pray joined the Delta Tau Delta (ΔΤΔ) Fraternity.



Born in Des Moines, IA, Roland G. Pray, Sr., spent his formative years in the town of Lake City, but he moved many times during early adulthood, particularly during the financially precarious years of the Depression. In the late 1930s, Roland worked for the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) in camps at Yellowstone National Park and other places in the West. The obituary of Roland Gilbert Pray, Jr., said of his early years: "The young family returned to their two-room cabin on the edge of Yellowstone Park where Roland's father served as a Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Architectural Forman. The family moved to several CCC outposts before settling in Seattle's Laurelhurst neighborhood." (See Seattle, "Roland Gilbert Pray," published 05/01/2022, accessed 05/02/2022.)

Following the tumult of World War II, he settled in Seattle, WA, where he stayed for the rest of his life.

The 1910 US Census recorded that Roland G. Pray lived with his family in Lake City, IA, where his father worked as a physician. The Prays lived on Main Street in Lake City. (See, Source Citation Year: 1910; Census Place: Lake Ward 4, Calhoun, Iowa; Roll: T624_394; Page: 17A; Enumeration District: 0031; FHL microfilm: 1374407, accessed 04/21/2018.) The family continued to live in Lake City a decade later. (See, Source Citation Year: 1920; Census Place: Lake, Calhoun, Iowa; Roll: T625_480; Page: 20B; Enumeration District: 37, accessed 04/21/2018.) He continued to live in Lake City with his family as enumerated in the 1925 Iowa State Census. (See, Source Information Iowa, State Census Collection, 1836-1925 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2007, accessed 04/21/2018.)

In 1938, while he worked at Yellowstone National Park, his son, Roland, Jr., was born in in Livingston, MT. The US Census recorded that the Pray Family lived at 85 Mammoth Street in Yellowstone National Park in 1940. (See, Source Citation Year: 1940; Census Place: Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming; Roll: m-t0627-04577; Page: 4A; Enumeration District: 24-1, accessed 04/21/2018.)

From at least 1951 until 1958, Roland and Bernice Pray lived at 3396 46th Avenue NE in Seattle. (See Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1953, p. 1047 and Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1958, p. 1238.) Bernice and Roland lived at this address until the ends of their lives in 1993 and 1996, respectively.


His father was Gilbert Leroy Pray (born 12/08/1875 in IA-d. 08/19/1939 in Lake City, IA), his mother, Frances Ellen Moseley, (born 10/05/1886 in IA-d. 04/05/1948 in Los Angeles, CA). They married on 10/05/1904 in Lake City, IA. (See, Source Information Iowa, Select Marriages Index, 1758-1996 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2014, accessed 04/21/2018.) Gilbert's father was from IN, his mother, IA. Francis's parents also came from the Midwest, her father being from IL, her mother from MI.

Both the 1900 and 1910 US Censuses listed Gilbert's occupation as a physician. (See, Source Citation Year: 1900; Census Place: Lake, Calhoun, Iowa; Page: 25; Enumeration District: 0035, accessed 04/21/2018.) He seems to have had a change of career sometime between 1910 and 1918. His World War I draft registration card stated his occupation as a farmer, and the US Census of 1920 corroborated that.

Frances maintained the household. By 1910, she had had two children, although only Roland survived. A daughter passed away in infancy in 1905. Another daughter, Marion Frances Pray Peterson was born in 1911 (09/30/1911-05/09/2006).


He married Bernice Petersen (born 09/29/1910 in IA-d. 05/25/1993 in Seattle, WA).


He and Bernice had a daughter, Mary B. Pray (born c. 1935 in WY) and a son, Roland Gilbert Pray, Jr., (born 01/09/1938 in Livingston, MT-d. 04/15/2022).

Roland, Jr., attended Roosevelt High School in Seattle, Everett Junior College and the University of Washington. He studied architecture at the UW and would later work for the school's Physical Plant for 35 years. Roland, Jr., married Marilynn Newburn in 1966 and together they two sons, Mark Pray and Matt Pray. (See Seattle, "Roland Gilbert Pray," published 05/01/2022, accessed 05/02/2022.)

Biographical Notes

His World War II draft registration card listed Roland Pray as standing 5-feet, 10-inches tall, weighing 150 pounds, with gray eyes and brown hair. (See, Source Citation The National Archives in St. Louis, Missouri; St. Louis, Missouri; Record Group: Records of the Selective Service System, 147; Box: 193, accessed 04/21/2018.)

SSN: 524-18-9599.

PCAD id: 3077