American architect. After a chequered career in San Francisco he became a gold prospector in northern California and the Klondike, then a dealer in antiques, settling in NYC (1904). He then designed various buildings in sundry styles for rich clients until the 1914–18 war brought about a reduction in commissions. Settling in Palm Beach, FL, he was fortunate enough to meet Paris Singer (c. 1865–1932), heir to some of the Singer Sewing Machine empire, who became his patron. Mizner built the Everglades Club, which was such a success he was then commissioned to design hundreds of houses for rich clients at Palm Beach, mostly erected 1919–26, in a Picturesque and showy Saracenic-Spanish style. He also manufactured terracotta components, artificial stone ornaments, and iron decorations, specifically to suit his architecture. The success of his activities at Palm Beach led Mizner to buy land to the south, at Boca Raton, and there he carried out many developments before the property bubble burst in 1926. Bankrupted, Mizner spent the last few years of his life writing his memoirs.
D. Curl (1996);Mizner (1932);Mizner & Tarbell (1928);Placzek (ed.) (1982)
Subjects: Architecture — Art.