Noffke, Werner Ernest, 1878-1964 : Werner Ernest Noffke (1878-1964). Born April 9, 1878, at Stolp in northeastern Germany, he arrived in Ottawa at the age of five. His father, steelworker Franz J., and his mother Henrietta Shilling had chosen the opportunities promised by life in Canada. He attended St. Paul's Evangelical Lutheran School and received private tuition in mathematics. He wanted to be an architect, and so at the age of 14 he asked for a job from local architect Adam Harvey thus began a four-year apprenticeship. Leaving Harvey, Noffke spent five years with Ottawa architect Moses C. Edey, best known as the architect of the Daly Building. The young student also attended night school. He earned the Ontario School of Arts Mechanical Medal in 1894 and its Architectural Medal a year later.
In 1901 Noffke entered into practice with George W. Northwood of Winnipeg. The firm of Northwood and Noffke lasted for seven years. He attended the first annual assembly of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada in 1997, and served as the president of the Ottawa Chapter of the Ontario Association of Architects in 1910-11.
Noffke married Ida A.A. Jordan in 1904, and built a home for himself and his bride at 209 Wilbrod Street, Ottawa, across the road from St. Paul's Lutheran Church, to which he remained attached all his life. The couple's only child, Wilfrid Edgar, was named after their friend Sir Wilfrid Laurier. Noffke, a lifelong Liberal, served with pride in the Governor General's Foot Guards between 1904-1907. He attained the rank of major, and commanded the armed guard of honour for the first Dominion Parliament at the outbreak of war in 1914.
Noffke practised in Ottawa from 1901 until the 1960s, and his drawings reflect the great breadth of his work both in subject and style. While his early work was typical of Ottawa building of the time, his later undertakings show an appreciation of modern architectural modes and an eagerness to experiment with new styles.
The architectural firms and associates of W.E. Noffke were:
Northwood and Noffke - 1901-08
W.E. Noffke - 1908-21
Noffke, Morin and Sylvester 1922-30
Noffke and Sylvester 1931-35
W.E. Noffke - 1935-54
Noffke and Ingram - 1954-60
Noffke, Ingram and Sherrif 1960-61
Earle Ingram and Associates 1962-64
Earle Ingram 1964
Ingram and Pye 1965-73
Brian E. Pye 1973-
Pye & Richards Architects Inc.