Carl R. Fehmer was born on November 10, 1838, in Dargun, Mecklenburg-Schwerin, Germany, the son of Heinrich Fehmer and his wife Maria Zerrahn.
He married on April 30, 1872, to Therese (Wahl) Smallwood (b. 1842-1843 in Kassel, Germany; d. 6May1914 in Boston), daughter of Ferdinand (Frederick) Wahl and his wife, Mary (LNU). She had been married previously.
Carl Fehmer died in 1923 in Kingston, New York.
Carl Fehmer immigrated to Boston in 1852 with his widowed mother and siblings.
In about 1854, he joined the office of George Snell as an apprentice and remained there for about eight years. In 1862, he produced the presentation perspective of City Hall for the firm of Gridley J. F. Bryant and Arthur Gilman, whose design was selected for the building. In 1865, he joined Theodore E. Coburn in an architectural partnership which continued until 1867, when he joined with William R. Emerson in the firm of Emerson and Fehmer. From 1874 to 1888 he was a sole practitioner, and from 1889 he practiced with Samuel F. Page in the firm of Fehmer and Page. The partnership continued until 1908 when he retired.
Among Fehmer’s works were the second MIT building (1883) on Boylston between Berkeley and Clarendon; The Warren (1884-1886) in Roxbury; The Bell Telephone Building on Milk Street (1880s; demolished in 1972); the Worthington Building (1894), at 33 State Street, one of the first steel-framed office buildings in Boston; and the Hotel Beaconsfield (1903-1905) in Brookline
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