George Snell

Personal Data

George Snell was born in 1820 in London, England.

He died on February 23, 1893, in Boston.

George Snell was unmarried.


George Snell graduated from the Institute of Civil Engineering in London.  He immigrated to Boston in 1849 and began practice as an architect almost immediately.  In 1852, he designed the 2,000 seat Music Hall (later the Orpheum) Theater near the corner of Tremont and Winter Streets.  Also in that year, he enlarged Christ Church in Cambridge.  In 1858-1860 he designed the Chapel of St. Paul (the “Old Chapel”) at St. Paul’s School in Concord, New Hampshire.

In about 1862, he joined in partnership with James R. Gregerson in the firm of Snell and Gregerson. The firm  continued until Snell’s death in 1893.

Bainbridge Bunting (Houses of Boston’s Back Bay) comments that the “work of Snell and Gregerson…possesses a stylistic consistency too strong to pass unnoticed. … While many of their contemporaries merely manipulated Classical forms, Snell and Gregerson, more perhaps than any other contemporary Boston firm, demonstrated a sympathy and understanding of orderly, Academic design.  Although disciplined, their designs are not the rigid mechanical exercises which less gifted academicians so often produced in the name of Classicism.  Usually they demonstrate a good deal of freedom and originality in handling Classical detail but these decorative variations never obscure the architectonic clarity of the composition.  In their hands the French Academic formula is both dignified and adaptable.”

Snell also was associated with Henry Greenough (brother of the sculptor, Horatio Greenough), with whom he designed University Museum at Harvard in 1865, and added to it in 1871 (“plain and clean-cut, factory-like in its design,” according to Douglas Shand-Tucci in Built in Boston).

Back Bay Work

1860 126 Beacon
1860 128 Beacon
1860 144 Beacon
1861 130 Beacon
1861 132 Beacon
1862 146 Beacon (?)
1864 188 Beacon [Snell and Gregerson]
1864 190 Beacon [Snell and Gregerson]
1864 8 Commonwealth (Demolished) [Snell and Gregerson]
1864 10 Commonwealth (Demolished) [Snell and Gregerson]
1865 301 Berkeley (43 Marlborough) (Demolished) [Snell and Gregerson]
1865 41 Marlborough (Demolished) [Snell and Gregerson]
1866 182 Beacon [Snell and Gregerson]
1866 184 Beacon [Snell and Gregerson]
1866 15 Commonwealth [Snell and Gregerson]
1866 54 Commonwealth (Demolished) [Snell and Gregerson]
1866 56 Commonwealth (Demolished) [Snell and Gregerson]
1866 58 Commonwealth [Snell and Gregerson]
1866 60 Commonwealth [Snell and Gregerson]
1867 179 Beacon [Snell and Gregerson]
1867 401 Beacon (Demolished) [Snell and Gregerson]
1867 403 Beacon [Snell and Gregerson]
1867 405 Beacon [Snell and Gregerson]
1867 407 Beacon [Snell and Gregerson]
1867 409 Beacon [Snell and Gregerson]
1869 236 Beacon [Snell and Gregerson]
1869 68 Commonwealth [Snell and Gregerson]
1871 163 Marlborough [Snell and Gregerson]
1872 326 Dartmouth [Snell and Gregerson]
1872 328 Dartmouth [Snell and Gregerson]
1877 322 Beacon [Snell and Gregerson]
1877 63 Commonwealth [Snell and Gregerson]
1877 65 Commonwealth (Demolished) [Snell and Gregerson]
1878 135 Commonwealth [Snell and Gregerson]
1878 183 Commonwealth [Snell and Gregerson]
1879 90 Commonwealth (Demolished) [Snell and Gregerson]
1879 133 Commonwealth [Snell and Gregerson]
1879 171 Commonwealth [Snell and Gregerson]
1880 340 Beacon [Snell and Gregerson]
1880 263 Commonwealth [Snell and Gregerson]
1880 267 Commonwealth [Snell and Gregerson]
1882 177 Commonwealth [Snell and Gregerson]
1885 18 Exeter [Snell and Gregerson]
1887 406 Beacon [Snell and Gregerson]
1888 501 Beacon [Snell and Gregerson]
1888 404 Marlborough [Snell and Gregerson]
1889 27½-29 Massachusetts [Snell and Gregerson