Tuesday, January 10, 2012

North Shore Hotel, Malpeque

     I was to the annual winter lecture series by the Architectural Institute and Conservation last evening at Beaconsfield Carriage House in Charlottetown.  The topic was Spotlight on Streetscapes of Malpeque presented by Sally Blake-Hooff, a former resident of Malpeque.   Below is an image of a hotel mentioned in the lecture.  Sorry - I don't have credit for the photo source below - it was from a local history I believe.
     The hotel was abandoned for years - many people wanted to buy it and move it off the Bearisto property but the owner wouldn't hear of it - finally it was torn down in the 1980's.  My friend Arnold Smith recalls walking through the hotel prior to it's demolition and was surprised that it had wooden bathtubs.     
 Detail for fonds Acc4948 
     The Beairsto family lived in Malpeque, Prince Edward Island. George (1786-1864) and his wife Margret Riley Beairsto built North Shore House in 1810. Their son Benjamin Beairsto (1817-1894) married Anne McNutt (1823-1903) and became the second owner of the North Shore House hotel. In 1888, they added the third storey. Benjamin was a Justice of the Peace, and he performed many marriage ceremonies in his home. His son George F. Beairsto (1853-1923) married Emma Ramsay (1865-1962), and they were the third owners of the North Shore Hotel and farm. Their son Ralph Beairsto (1897-1972) married Bertha Buxton (1896-1949) and became the fourth and last of the Beairsto family to own and live at the North Shore Hotel and farm. After Bertie's death, Ralph and his mother moved to Charlottetown.
      This fonds consists of records belonging to the Beairsto family of Malpeque, Prince Edward Island. The records include Benjamin Beairsto's magistrate book (1851-1869) and a North Shore House Hotel ledger (1889-1903), the back section of which was used as a diary by Ralph Beairsto, documenting farm life (1933-1938). A small notebook diary for October 1920 to January 1921 has also been attributed to Ralph Beairso. The fonds also contains a post-1888 photo of North Shore House Hotel and a newspaper article about the hotel (1972). Also, the fonds consists of a book that appears to have been used by at least three individuals as a diary, including a young woman attending college in Charlottetown, an unidentified individual (April 1912), and another individual (April to June 1913, 1938-1940). The handwriting for the 1913 and 1938-1940 entries matches that found in other diaries in the fonds which have been attributed by the donor to Ralph Beairsto. The book also includes loose papers listing names, household and farm item, and prices. The fonds also includes a ledger listing names of individuals hired and method of payment (1893-ca. 1935) and as well as accounts (1935-1949). Finally, there are two crayon portraits [1880-1899] of the second generation to own and operate North Shore House, Benjamin Beairsto and his wife, Ann MacNutt.
     Benjamin Bearisto 1817-1894 married Anne McNutt 1823-1903 - they were the second owners of the North Shore Hotel.  In 1888 they added the third floor to the building.  Benjamin was a Justice of the Peace and performed marriages in his home.  Info cf. http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~mnrrvn/McNutt-Anne-1823.html


  1. Very interesting post, Carter, as a follow-up to a fascinating Streetscape presentation. Our rural roads are losing so much of their historic interest. Too bad this building bit the dust. Sally's talk has inspired me to travel through that area when I have a free day in the summer. I was not even aware of the museum's existence.

  2. What a loss. Why they wouldn't let it be moved instead of meeting the wrecking the ball is beyond me. Lord know it'd be better looking then most of the cookie cutter places dotting the countryside nowadays. Wonder if there's any more pictures of the interior and exterior at all somewhere?

  3. I visited this site with Everett Benjamin Beairsto in late summer of 1980. He had spent time there with his family during summers while growing up in New Jersey. His father, Everett Beairsto, M.D., had been raised there. At the time of our visit, the house had been long abandoned, but we walked through it. Ben recalled that his grandfather raised pigs, and we went out back to the barn and there were still pigs being raised there. I recall photographing the piglets, as well as the house. If I can find them, I can post.

    1. Thanks for your post - I'd love to see any photos you might have.