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George McRae

George McRae was born in Edinburgh in 1858. He arrived in Sydney in 1884 and was appointed Assistant Architect in the City Architect’s office. He became City Architect and City Building Surveyor in 1889, a position he held until 1897 when he was appointed Principal Assistant Architect to Vernon in the Government Architect’s Branch. He succeeded Vernon as Government Architect in 1912 and held the office until his death in 1923.

Works undertaken by McRae during his term as Government Architect include: the Education Dept Building 1912; Parcels Post Office 1913; Taronga Zoo lower entrance, top entrance, and Indian elephant house; additions to the Colonial Treasury Building in Bridge Street, and Cessnock Court House.

From 1912 until 1937 the Government Architect’s Branch was housed in the “Tin Shed”, a temporary building on the site of the first Government House and demolished in 1970.

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