Maude Darling Parlin was born into a family of architects from Westport, MA. After graduating in 1907 from the M.I.T. architecture program, she went to the Pratt Institute in NYC. In 1910 she married an M.I.T. classmate, Raymond W. Parlin, and had three children. Raymond died in 1924. In 1921 Maude joined her family firm in Fall River. She was an ardent preservationist who was innovative in the use of straightforward classical, classical revival, colonial revival and art deco designs. She made many interesting contributions to the “new downtown” after the devastating 1928 fire.
Her design of The Eagle Restaurant to resemble the great and elegant dining rooms of the famous Fall River Line Steamships is as great and marvelous 80 years ago as it is today. She also designed the Durfee Theater with a dramatic lobby based on Alhambra. Both the Eagle and the Durfee had their grand opening night on November 29, 1929. One complimented the other. (The Durfee was demolished in 1973).
Other local buildings she designed are: Welcome Home Arch (WWI), Baptist Temple, Mills Building (R.A. McWhirr Co), 1916 Buffington Building, Temple Beth El, the Women’s Club, and many more. In addition to designing civic and commercial buildings she designed over 100 homes. She was a pioneer as a woman architect. She retired at the age of 91 and died at the age of 94.
Maude Darling-Parlin (1885-1979), Architect
Image from the collection of the Fall River Historical Society