(b. 1716, York, d. 1775, New Haven)


American architect, born in England and emigrated to Rhode Island in 1740. Peter Harrison and his brother, Joseph Harrison, came to the American colonies and established themselves as merchants and captains of their own "vessels." Peter Harrison returned to England between 1743 and 1745 and received his formal training as an architect under the direction of one of the English Lords who had dedicated themselves to the training of architects through private studio-schools using pattern books, grand tours of Italy and Greece and through applied skills, teaching their students to become expert draftsmen.

Harrison created his designs after Palladio's patterns in the fourth of his books on architecture, rendering them for the most part in wood. He was also influenced by English Neo-Palladianism. Many buildings are attributed to Peter Harrison, but there are only a few that are solidly documented as being his creations. These buildings are: the Redwood Library (1749-58), the Brick Market Building (1762-72) and the Touro Synagogue (1759) in Newport, Rhode Island and the King's Chapel (1749) in Boston, Massachusetts as well as Christ Church, Cambridge (1759-60).