William Raymond Yelland (1890-1966)


Yelland, William Raymond

Personal Information

Birth/Death:    AIA notified of decease Oct. 1966
Occupation:    American architect
Location (state):    CA

This record has not been verified for accuracy.

AIA Affiliation

Member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) 1927-decease

Biographical Sources

American Architects Directories:
Address listed in 1956 American Architects Directory
Address listed in 1962 American Architects Directory
Biographical information:
Contributed by the Environmental Design Archives, University of California, Berkeley:
William Raymond Yelland was born in Saratoga, California in 1890. His father was a prune rancher, and the family lived on the prune ranch. His mother was a physician who received her degree from the University of California in 1886. Yelland trained at UC Berkeley, graduating with a B.S. in Architecture in 1913 when John Galen Howard was the program's director. He then spent a year at the University of Pennsylvania. During World War I, Yelland was stationed in France, and his time spent there influenced his architectural esthetic. He is believed to have worked in the offices of Bernard Maybeck and Walter Ratcliff after graduation. Licensed in California in 1916, Yelland joined the Oakland office of Miller and Warnecke in 1920. By 1924 he had set up an independent practice at 1404 Franklin Street in Oakland, where he remained for his career.
In 1930, Yelland married Edna Holroyd, a poet and librarian, and traveled to Europe and Asia. Afterwards, he exhibited his sketches in local galleries and published them in the San Francisco Chronicle. He and his wife collaborated on Christmas cards and booklets—he did the illustration and she wrote the poetry.
Yelland's architectural style has been characterized as Medieval Revival, particularly the French Norman Mode. He described his style as vaguely "rural." Examples of this style can be seen in the Richards House of 1926 (in the Claremont section of Berkeley) and the Thornburg (or Normandy) Village of 1926-28 (also in Berkeley). After World War II, however, his style broadened to include California ranch houses and modernism.
In the early 1950s Yelland moved to Milan, and died there in 1966.
Source: Winter, Robert, ed. Toward a Simpler Way of Life: The Arts & Crafts Architects of California, Berkeley: University of California Press, 1997.

Related Records

Archival Holdings

The American Institute of Architects Archives
      Membership file may contain membership application, related correspondence. Contact the AIA Archives at archives@aia.org for further information.

Environmental Design Archives, University of California, Berkeley

Collection Number: 1982-1. Extent: 1 half box, 6 flat file drawers. The William Raymond Yelland collection consists primarily of project records, arranged alphabetically by project. These include specifications, drawings, correspondence, notes, and a clipping. Drawings, which form the bulk of the collection, largely relate to residential work, although some commercial and apartment buildings, including Normandy Village, are also included. The collection also includes an attendance book and other materials from a technical drawing class that Yelland taught at night for adults through the Oakland Public Schools in 1933. Link to online finding aid: http://www.oac.cdlib.org/findaid/ark:/13030/tf538nb14j