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Male, US, born 1871-07-16, died 1955-09-04

Associated with the firms network

Marsh and Russell, Architects; Marsh, Norman Foote, Architect; Marsh, Smith and Powell, Architects

Professional History


Lucical Engineer, American Luxfer Prism Company, Chicago, IL, c. 1897-1900; he worked for American Luxfer in Chicago, New York, NY, and Philadelphia, PA.

Secretary, Mojave River Irrigation District, Victor Valley, San Bernardino, CA, c. 1907. See Foote Family Comprising the Genealogy and History of Nathaniel Foote of Wethersfield, Conn. and His Descendants, Vol. I, (Rutland, VT: Marble City Press--The Tuttle Company, 1907), p. 807.

Partner, [J.N.] Preston and Marsh, Architects, Los Angeles, CA, 1900-1901.

Partner, Marsh and Russell, Architects, Los Angeles, CA, 1902-1907. One of Marsh and Russell's most important early clients was Abbot Kinney, the original developer of Venice, CA. In 1904, the firm assisted Kinney in laying out his masterplan for this Italian-influenced development.

Marsh and Russell dissolved in 1907,

Principal, Norman F. Marsh, Architect, Los Angeles, CA, 1917. In 1917, Marsh occupied Rooms #212-214 in the Broadway Central Building, 424 Broadway, Los Angeles. ("See "Directory of Architects," Southwest Builder and Contractor, vol. 50, no. 1, [whole no. 1267], 07/06/1917, p. 3.) During the economic slump just following World War I, in 1921, he occupied Room #211 of the Broadway Central Building. (See Los Angeles, California, City Directory, 1921, p. 2721.)

Professional Activities

Member, American Institute of Architects (AIA), Southern CA Chapter.

Professional Awards

Marsh was listed as an Honorary Member of Alpha Rho Chi, the architectural honor society, in the 1918 and 1919 University of Illinois Yearbooks, Illio, p. 264 and p. 324.


High School/College

Marsh attended public secondary schools in Upper Alton, IL.

Coursework in art, literature and science, Shurtleff College, Upper Alton, IL, three years, 1889-1891. Shurtleff was founded as a Baptist college in 1827. It closed in 1957.

B.S.,Arch., University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, IL, 1892-1897.



Marsh was born in Upper Alton, IL, and attended secondary schools and three years of college at Shurtleff College, before relocating in 1892 to Champaign-Urbana, IL, to attend the state university. He moved to Chicago, IL, to work for the still-extent Luxfer Prism Glass Company, where he worked as a "lucical engineer." Prism glass cylinders embedded in sidewalks helped to magnify solar energy, illuminating basement storage areas in many urban contexts. According to a timeline of Luxfer corporate history: in 1898, "Luxfer even offer[ed] the services of '1ucical engineers' who travel[ed] to job sites to help optimize prism tile usage." (See "Luxfer Gas, "Company History," accessed 12/12/2013.) During this job, he traveled to other cities including New York, NY, and Philadelphia, PA.

After three years, Marsh left Luxfer and relocated to Los Angeles, CA in 07/1900, where he entered into an architectural partnership, Preston and Marsh, with Jasper Newton Preston (1832-1922). Preston and Marsh lasted only one year, leading, in 1902, to a more durable partnership with Clarence H. Russell, that lasted until about 09/1907.

Marsh, unlike many contemporary architects, did not change his residences frequently. He had enough financial stability to remain in the same house during the Depression, and did not move to larger quarters when times were good. When he first moved to Los Angeles, he lived alone in a rooming house at 811 South Hill Street. (See Source Citation Year: 1900; Census Place: Los Angeles Ward 4, Los Angeles, California; Roll: 89; Page: 15A; Enumeration District: 0035; FHL microfilm: 1240089, accessed 04/20/2017.)

He resided in two houses during his 55 years in Southern CA. In 1910, he lived at 911 Fair Oaks Avenue In South Pasadena. At this time, he lived with his mother-iin-law, Rebecca Cairns, (born c. 1844 in IL), a servant, Ellen Madley, (born c. 1880 in England), and her daughter, Lillian, (born c. 1901 in England). He and Cora resided at 1934 Milan Avenue in South Pasadena from at least 1920 until 1952. (See (See Source Citation Year: 1920; Census Place: South Pasadena, Los Angeles, California; Roll: T625_119; Page: 9A; Enumeration District: 614; Image: 985, accessed 04/20/2017, and South Pasadena, California, City Directory, 1952,p. 139.)

He died in Los Angeles County, CA, at the age of 84. He was laid to rest in the mausoleum of the Mountain View Cemetery and Mausoleum, Altadena, CA.


His parents were Ebenezer Marsh and Kate Prevost Foote Marsh; they married in Alton, IL, in 1860. According to the 1880 US Census, Ebeneezer was a chemist, a common word of the time for a pharmacist. His parents had nine children, eight sons and a daughter. Norman was the second youngest boy. His siblings, all born in Upper Alton, included George Edmunds Marsh (09/23/1861-1939), who also became a pharmacist, Henry Arthur Marsh (born 07/20/1863) Alfred Eben Marsh (born 11/09/1864), William Holton March (born 10/17/1866), Joseph Van Eaton Marsh (born 04/06/1868), Benjamin Dodge Marsh (03/08/1870-08/26/1870), Alice Ellen Marsh (born 02/16/1874), and Charles Mason Marsh (born 02/11/1884). (See, Source Citation Year: 1880; Census Place: Upper Alton, Madison, Illinois; Roll: 233; Family History Film: 1254233; Page: 195D; Enumeration District: 014; Image: 0393, accessed 04/20/2017.)


Marsh married Cora Mae Cairns (1874-1957) at Polo, IL, 01/23/1901. (See, Source Information: Illinois, County Marriage Records, 1800-1940 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2016, accessed 05/14/2020.)


He and Cora had two children, Norman LeRoy Marsh (1902-1978) and Marian Elizabeth Marsh (1906-2001).

Biographical Notes

Marsh became a 32nd-degree Mason, Pasadena Consistory, Pasadena, CA, c. 1909.

Member, Modern Woodmen, Pacific Camp, Los Angeles, CA, c. 1909.

Member, 1st Baptist Church, Los Angeles, CA, c. 1909.

Member, Southern California Baptist Assembly, Board of Directors, c. 1909.

Chairman, Memorial Baptist Church, Board of Trustees, c. 1909-1913. Marsh was active in the Baptist Church, and designed several in Southern CA and in the Pacific Northwest. He also made professional connections with Methodist congregations in the Los Angeles area.

Associated Locations

  • South Pasadena, CA (Architect's Death)
    South Pasadena, CA 91030

  • Upper Alton, IL (Architect's Birth)
    Upper Alton, IL

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PCAD id: 332

1st Baptist Church #1, Alhambra, CAAlhambraCA
1st Baptist Church #2, Pomona, CA 1910PomonaCA
1st Baptist Church #2, South Pasadena, CASouth PasadenaCA
1st Baptist Church Project, Seattle, WA1907SeattleWA
1st Baptist Church Project, Vancouver, BC1906VancouverBC
1st Methodist Church #2, Azusa, CA1910AzusaCA
1st Methodist Church #2, Upland, CA1930UplandCA
1st Methodist Church of Oakland #4, CA 1911-1912OaklandCA
1st Methodist Church, Covina, CA1909-1910CovinaCA
1st Methodist Church, Long Beach, CA1907Long BeachCA
1st Methodist Church, Santa Ana, CA1928Santa AnaCA
1st Presbyterian Church #1, Azusa, CAAzusaCA
1st Presbyterian Church, Long Beach, CA1907Long BeachCA
2111 East Woodlyn Road House, Pasadena, CA1951PasadenaCA
2nd Baptist Church #2, Los Angeles, CALos AngelesCA
American Legion, Lodge, South Pasadena, CA1921South PasadenaCA
Azusa Woman's Club, Azusa, CA1912-1913AzusaCA
Bush, George, Memorial Garden, South Pasadena, CA1942South PasadenaCA
Calvary Presbyterian Church #2, Wilmington, Los Angeles, CA1927Los AngelesCA
City of Azusa, Public Library #1, Azusa, CA 1908-1910AzusaCA
Columbia Hospital, Los Angeles, CALos AngelesCA
Corona Baptist Church, Corona, CACoronaCA
Friendship Baptist Church, Pasadena, CA1921PasadenaCA
Glendale Unified School District, Union High School #2, Glendale, CA 1908-1909GlendaleCA
Glendale Unified School District, Union High School #2, Household Arts Building, Glendale, CA 1915GlendaleCA
Glendale Unified School District, Union High School #2, Mechanics Building, Glendale, CAGlendaleCA
Griffith, A.P., Block, Azusa, CA1894AzusaCA
Hollywood Hotel Project, Hollywood, Los Angeles, CA1907Los AngelesCA
Huntington Beach Pavilion, Huntington Beach, CA1905
Inglewood Unified School District, Fairview Heights School, Inglewood, CAInglewoodCA
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Jewell Memorial Methodist Episcopal Church #2, Colton, CA1913-1914ColtonCA
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Methodist Auditorium, Huntington Beach, CA1905-1906Huntington BeachCA
Montebello Unified School District, Suva Street School, Bell Gardens, CA1946Bell GardensCA
Newport-Mesa Unified School District, Corona del Mar Elementary School, Corona del Mar, CA1944Corona del MarCA
Nordhoff Union High School District, Nordhoff Union High School #1, Nordhoff, CA1911-1912OjaiCA
Novak House, Franklin Hills, Los Angeles, CA1937Franklin Hills, Los AngelesCA
Parkhurst Building, Ocean Park, Santa Monica, CA1926-1927Santa MonicaCA
Pomona Unified School District (PUSD), Polytechnic High School, Pomona, CA1909PomonaCA
Porter, F.C., House, South Pasadena, CA1904South PasadenaCA
Santa Ana 1st Methodist Church, Santa Ana, CA
Santa Monica School District, Roosevelt School, Santa Monica, CA1935Santa MonicaCA
South Pasadena Unified School District, South Pasadena High School, Fine Arts Building, South Pasadena, CASouth PasadenaCA
South Pasadena Unified School District, South Pasadena High School, Main Building, South Pasadena, CA 1906-1907South PasadenaCA
South Pasadena Unified School District, South Pasadena High School, Science Building, South Pasadena, CASouth PasadenaCA
Swedish Baptist Church, Los Angeles, CA1906Los AngelesCA
Tropico Methodist Church, Tropico, Glendale, CA1913
University of Redlands, Administration Building, Redlands, CA1909-1910RedlandsCA
University of Redlands, Bekins Hall, Redlands, CARedlandsCA
University of Southern California (USC), Taper Hall for the Humanities, Exposition Park, Los Angeles, CA
Upland Unified School District, Upland Elementary School #2, Upland, CA1938UplandCA
Woman's Club of South Pasadena, South Pasadena, CA1913South PasadenaCA
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