Thursday, August 4, 2011

Haslam's 1857 "Stone Cottage" - Demolished 2011

I was by here yesterday and was surprised to see the house demolished.  I didn't have my camera so I went back up this morning to photograph the site - I took these photos from Rte. 2 highway in Springfield - a bit blurry for the distance as my zoom was maxed-out.
Below:  It appears an area was dug-out of the side of the hill to discard materials.  I'm assuming the beams and stones will be salvaged and for sale.  The house had been for sale to be moved since the fall of 2006.
The destruction of this house leaves the number of Island Sandstone houses down to six - they are located in the following communities: Hamilton; Hazel Grove; Harrington; Brackley (rebuilt); Clyde River; Lower Montague.

Below:  A photo of Stone Cottage I took in January 2007 when I photographed and prepared architectural as-found drawings for this house for the Heritage Division of the Department of Community and Cultural Affairs.
Below:  Photos I obtained from the Sinclair family.
“Stone Cottage”
c.f. “The History of Springfield 1825-1985”, Page. 183
            “The next property of 150 acres was bought by Thomas Haslam in 1844 from the Fanning heirs.  He transferred it to his sixth son, Robert, in 1850.  On this property, Robert Haslam built a stone house with blocks hewn from a stone quarry under the hill at the back of the farm.  “Stone Cottage” is now over 130 years old and is still the only stone house built in Springfield.  Robert Haslam beautified his farm property by planting hawthorne and spruces hedges.  At his death his son, Fred W.E., took charge at the early age of seventeen years.  Mrs. Robert Haslam and her daughters lived in “Stone Cottage” and Fred W.E. built a second house previous to his marriage.  Shortly after his death, the Misses Haslam went to Charlottetown to live and sold the farm in 1947 to Samuel G. Gillespie Sr., who moved here from Alberta with his family.  Samuel Jr. and his wife and family occupied Stone Cottage.  Samuel Sr., his wife and mother lived in the other house.  After Samuel Sr. died, the house was sold to Howard and Chrissy (Biggar) Parkman and moved to the corner lot at the junction of Rattenbury and Town roads.  It was later purchased by Vernon Paynter.  Samuel Gillispie Jr. returned to Alberta with his family and settled in Morrin.  The present owner of the “Stone Cottage” property is Eric Sinclair.”
Thomas Haslam was a native of Queen's County, Ireland. 
            In 1826 a new road to Princetown from Charlottetown was completed.  Thomas Haslam moved in January 1828 to establish an inn at a suitable location in Lot 67.  The deed for this property was dated December 22, 1828 and signed by Misses Fanning, co-heirs of Lot 67.  
            In 1834 Thomas Haslam had erected a second house.  The commodious, 12-roomed structure was built by his future son-in-law, Thomas Essery, a native of England.
            A millsite, owned and constructed by Thomas and his sons, was located on the millstream of the Dunk River at County Line, east of Emerald.    In 1809 the river at that point was fifty feet wide.  Huge felled trees were hauled by oxen through solid woods to the millsite to provide lumber for building of the second house on the homestead.  The mill was in operation for many years until it was destroyed by fire sometime after 1863.
            In 1837 Thomas Haslam was appointed Ranger and Inspector of every part of the forest and wilderness of Lot 67.  He had the authority to mark the best pine with the King's Arrow. 
            By 1841, Thomas Haslam had bought nine hundred acres from the Fanning heirs and settled his sons around the homestead.  The seven farms were all within hailing distance, and when one brother needed help he would shout to the nearest, and each would relay the message to the next.  The countryside was so quite that sounds carried far.  In short order all would arrive to help with the job on hand.  It was told that these brothers would be in the woods before dawn, waiting daybreak to start the work of clearing land. 

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