Robert Mosher

Architect | 1920-2016
Photographer Not Known

Robert Mosher was raised in Los Angeles, attended The Art Center School, USC and University of Washington where he completed his degree in Seattle as WWII came to a close. Returning to San Diego, Mosher worked for Myron Hunt & H.C. Chambers as well as Harwell Hamilton Harris. With Roy Drew, he launched Mosher and Drew, Architects in 1948.

Photographer Not Known

Robert Mosher was born on September 17, 1920 and was raised in Los Angeles. He attended The Art Center School, USC and University of Washington where he majored in architecture. Drafted by the US Army and later discharged on medical disability, Mosher completed his degree in Seattle as World War II came to a close.

Returning to San Diego, Bob worked for Myron Hunt & H.C. Chambers on several projects in San Diego for the US Navy and Marine Corps. Having married Chambers' secretary, Ann Hoover, Robert returned to Los Angeles to study for his state architectural exams and an 8-month stint with Harwell Hamilton Harris.

Following the completion of his licensing exam, Bob returned to his family in La Jolla and worked for William Templeton Johnson. Bob's father, Jack Mosher, purchased the Green Dragon Colony in 1944 so following his departure from Templeton Johnson's office the Green Dragon became his first major project. Shortly thereafter commissions for home designs started pouring in for clients like Rosco Hazard, Harry Rollins, George Wick and Richard Compton.

Bob invited Roy Drew to stay in a Green Dragon apartment for 6-months and by 1948, Roy had sold the house he designed for himself in La Canada, moved his family to La Jolla, and established the firm Mosher and Drew, Architects. Early work was primarily commissions in La Jolla - including garage remodels, additions, signage, fences, store fronts, houses and any other work they could secure.

Right away Mosher and Drew, Architects engaged San Diegans in their brand of humanist/modernist architecture. Designs for Gordon Gray, Herbert Kunzel, and James Copley drew attention from several publications including House Beautiful. The magazine's editor, Elizabeth Gordon, after seeing images of his early homes, requested that Bob work for the magazine. Roy agreed on allowing Bob to take a sabbatical from the firm so he could pursue the role of Building Editor for the national magazine. Moving to New York City, Bob lived with his family in Dobb's Ferry, commuting in to Manhattan daily. In preparation for House Beautiful's landmark dedication of an entire issue to architect Frank Lloyd Wright, Bob lived with Wright at Taliesin (in Spring Green, WI) for 2-3 weeks. This period left a lasting impression on Mr. Mosher.

The firm's expansion was enabled by the hiring of Bill Watson and Bill Ferguson. Between 1958-1968, in addition to the residential work which was the basis of their early practice, they were retained to design larger projects. For Bob, projects included the first alterations and additions to the La Jolla Art Center (later to become the La Jolla Museum of Art); the San Diego Children's Home; the Married Students Apartments, the Residential Apartments Phase Two, the Master Plan for John Muir College, and the Applied Physics and Mathematics Building at the University of California, San Diego; the Aztec Center (Student Union) at San Diego State University; the San Diego Fine Arts Gallery, West Wing (now the San Diego Museum of Art); the Bank of La Jolla Building (now the Wall Street Building); All Soul's Episcopal Church in Point Loma; an office building for Coldwell Banker in San Diego; the Kellogg West Conference Center at California Polytechnic University, Pomona; the Golden Valley Office Complex in Mission Valley; the La Jolla Branch of the California First Bank (now the Union Bank of California); and the Sherwood Auditorium, expanded galleries, and a new entrance for the La Jolla Museum of Art (now the Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego); During this period, Robert also served as Design Consultant for the San Diego/Coronado Bridge.

Partial List of Early Projects

All Soul’s Episcopal Church (1965)
1475 Catalina Boulevard, Point Loma

Andrews, Stockton Residence (1954)
6131 Terryhill Drive, La Jolla

Anson Lewis Building
La Jolla

Applied Physics and Mathematics (1966)
Muir College, UC San Diego

Art Center La Jolla Remodel-Additions (1950)
Prospect Street, La Jolla

Art Center La Jolla Remodel-Additions(1960)
Prospect Street, La Jolla

Ascot Shop Interiors
La Jolla

Aztec Center, Student Union Building (1964)
San Diego State University
*Demolished in 2011

Baily, Edward Residence (1949)
1106 Muirlands Drive, La Jolla

Bank of America (1960)
7680 Girard, La Jolla
*Award of Merit, AIA San Diego (1962). Demolished

Bank of La Jolla (1964)
7855 Ivanhoe Street, La Jolla

Borchers, Jack Residence (1952)
3345 Lucinda Street, Point Loma

Borrego Sun Building (ca. 1961)
Borrego Springs

Bowman, John C. Residence (1954)
3529 Hugo Street

Cady Residence
La Jolla
*Photographed by Maynard L. Parker

Carter, Armistead Pool House & Garden Shelter (1955)
Mission Hills
*Addition to a house by Emmor Brooke Weaver

Central Federal Building (ca. 1977)
225 Broadway, San Diego

Compton, Richard Residence (1948)
17077 El Mirador Road, Rancho Santa Fe

Coon, Thurlow Residence (1954)
2522 Horizon Way, La Jolla

Copley Library
La Jolla

Copley Press Building
La Jolla

Dunham Office Building
La Jolla

E.F. Hutton and Co. Office Building (1960)
7620 Girard Avenue, La Jolla

E.F. Hutton and Co. Office Building (1967)
320 B Street, San Diego

First Baptist Church of La Jolla (1957)
627 Genter Street, La Jolla

Geisel, Ted Residence Additions/Alterations (1964)
7301 Encelia Drive, La Jolla

Green Dragon Buildings (1948-49)
1200 Block of Prospect Street, La Jolla
*Multiple buildings housed the following: Ferguson Art Gallery, Mosher & Drew Architects, Fred Norris Architect, Whitsitt's Millinery Shop, Allen Wertz Candies, Allan Adler Handwrought Silver, Holiday House Restaurant, The Caribbean Shop, and Paul F. Scott Stationer, Tweeds and Weeds British Clothiers, Gerard and Sands European Handcrafts Shop. These were published in Progressive Architecture in October, 1950.

Hamilton, Thomas Residence (1967-68)
485 San Gorgonio Street, Point Loma

Hazard, Rosco Residence (1948)
555 Gage Lane, Point Loma

Irwin, James Residence (1954)
300 Sea Lane, La Jolla

Koehler, Otto Residence (1949)
1874 Spindrift Drive, La Jolla

Kunzel, Herbert Residence (1951)
3250 McCall Street, Point Loma

La Jolla Art Center Alterations and Additions (ca. 1950, 1960, 1970)
700 Prospect Street, La Jolla

La Jolla Christian Fellowship Church
La Jolla

La Jolla Federal Savings and Loan (1962)
1100 Wall Street, La Jolla
*Award of Merit, AIA San Diego (1962). Recognized at the 1964 United Masonry Association of San Diego Awards

Lebenhouse Residence (1959)
2451 Ellentown, La Jolla

Lek Residence Restoration
*Restoration after Henry Hester remodeled H.H. Harris' Lek Residence. Demolished.

Lightner & Hillmen Law Offices (ca. 1968)
3104 Fourth Avenue, San Diego
*Photographed by Julius Shulman in 1968

Married Student Apartments (1961)
UC San Diego

Matthews Campus Art Gallery (1965)
UC San Diego

McGrath, Thomas Residence
La Jolla

McNarney, Joseph Residence Interiors (1958)
7730 Sierra Mar Drive, La Jolla

Mosher and Drew Offices (1957)
1255 Coast Boulevard, La Jolla

Mosher, Jack Residence (1946)
1260 Prospect Street, La Jolla
*Jack-O-Lantern House Remodel

Mosher Offices (Jack, Robert) (1947)
1264 Prospect Street, La Jolla

Mosher, Jack Residence (1950)
1258 Prospect Street, La Jolla

Mosher, Robert Residence (1950)
7750 Sierra Mar Drive, La Jolla

Office Building for Robert Golden (1969)
123 Camino de la Reina, San Diego

Reagan, Bruce Residence (1954)
6141 Terry Hill Drive, La Jolla

Retail Building for Anson Lewis (1954)
7521 Fay Avenue, La Jolla

Richards, Trumbull Residence (1961)
La Jolla Farms, La Jolla

Rollins, Harry Residence (1948)
7752 Sierra Mar Drive, La Jolla

San Diego Children’s Home (1958)
3002 Armstrong Street, San Diego

San Diego – Coronado Bridge (1965)
San Diego

San Diego Fine Arts Gallery, West Wing (1964)
Balboa Park

San Diego Trust & Savings Bank
Girard Street, La Jolla

Small, Luciene K. Residence (1959)
305 San Antonio Avenue, Point Loma

Southern California First National Bank

St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, Chancel Window (1958)
334 14th Street, Del Mar

Student Apartments (1965)
UC San Diego

Tasende Art Gallery
Prospect Street, La Jolla

Thiele, John Residence (1960)
7770 Sierra Mar Drive, La Jolla

Tuttle, William Residence (1952)
1835 Spindrift Drive, La Jolla

Tyson, D.R. Residence (1958)
1320 West Muirlands Drive

UCSD Art Gallery (1965)
UC San Diego

Van Dorn, William Residence (1950)
6603 Muirlands Drive, La Jolla

Warwick’s Books Front Façade (1953)
7812 Girard Avenue, La Jolla

Wick, George Residence (1948)
1433 Savoy Circle, La Jolla

Wohlford, Burnet C. Residence Additions (1949)
3355 East Valley Parkway, Escondido

Young, Richard Residence (1959)
2496 Avenida de la Playa, La Jolla

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