Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Prince County Hospital, Summerside - 1951

    A while back when a family member was a patient at Prince County Hospital I was interested to study this large architectural rendering displayed in one of the Unit corridors.  
     This was the second Prince County Hospital built in 1951 on Beattie Avenue - it replaced the first Prince County Hospital, opened in 1912, was located on St. Stephen Street.
    It's evident as you move through Prince County Hospital that they take pride in their history and display it in many different ways throughout the facility.
    A very good history of the hospital and nurse's residence was written in 2012 by Katherine Dewar and Wayne Wright - This Caring Place: The History of the Prince County Hospital and the School of Nursing.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Warren Farm, Mill River East

     This old farmstead in Hills River (between Alberton and Bloomfield) at 1152 Mill River East Road (Rte. 145) is not long in existence.  The property has recently changed hands and one of the old farm buildings has already been destroyed.
     This was the old Benjamin Warren farmstead.  Benjamin was married to Jane Hewitt and they had two sons, Chester *Chet*, a bachelor; and Thomas who married Isabelle *Belle* Hardy - they had four son: 
1) Gordon m. Blanche Gamble, he farmed this family farm and did carpentry and plumbing on the side; 
2) Walter, he died of appendicitis at 9 years old; 
3) William, m. Marion Hall and lived in Mass., USA; and 
4) Norman m. Wilna Gordon and lived at the end of the Hardy Road in Montrose.  
     By the look of the house I would say it was built in the mid 1800's .  Note above the warehouse door the farm was once called "Norwood Farm".
     The view southeast from this property is looking over the Hills and Mill Rivers.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Sharkey House, Corraville - 1923

    I came across this great photo of a rural farm in Corraville on the Facebook page of the "Cardigan Heritage Centre".  Corraville is bordered by the communities of Martinvale, Cardross, Primrose, Southampton, Milburn, Stratcona - more easily described as between Cardigan and St. Peter's on Route 313 in Kings County.

Friday, August 4, 2017

William Hyde Sr.'s Octagonal House, Meadowbank

     I recently picked-up a copy of "Our West River Heritage" by Violet MacEachern & Arlene MacDougall (January 1993) and was interested to read about an octagonal house built here on Prince Edward Island.  The following is from page 20.
     "It is interesting to learn that William Hyde, Sr., built a large, two-storied, eight sided house which contained a ballroom on the second floor.  This house was a social centre where Members of Parliament were often entertained.  (He was an M.P. for two terms (1812, 1818 & 1825?)).  This fine home was destroyed by fire, about the year 1857, when two Hyde sisters were the only occupants.  Two valuable pieces of furniture were saved from the flames: an antique grandfather's clock, and a sixteen-legged table made of black birch.  All the correspondence with relatives in the old country, England and Ireland, was destroyed severing family connections."  
     William Hyde Sr. was born in 1763 in County Clare, Ireland.  His occupation was listed as militia, farmer and politician.  In 1787 he married Christina Simpson of Cavendish - they had ten children.  William was a member of the Prince Edward Island Provincial Legislature.  William died on October 23, 1831.  ( Info cf. )
Will of William Hyde the Elder of Elliott River Settlement On Township Number 32, Esquire. /// Liber 2 Folio 187 /// To my dearly beloved wife Christiana for life, the House I now reside in with the furniture and 90 acres or therabouts adjoining, with the Barn, and one half of the Stock, Crop, etc., she to allow her daughters, Ellen, Jannett, Mary, and Sarah to live with her as heretofore until they may be married, then to receive one milk cow and six breeding ewes. They may remain on said land after mother's land if unmarried or widows; lands to go eventually to sons James and John equally. / To son William, Freehold farm he now occupies of 110 acres "and forming a point or peninsula fronting on Elliott River and Mill Creek". / Freehold Farm of 110 acres occupied by late son, Thomas (description given), to his widow, Caroline, and children "born and to be born," till the eldest son is 21, he then to take a double portion and to give his brothers and sisters an equal portion (etc.). / To my son, James the remainder of the freehold whereon I at present reside, etc. of 110 acres. / To son John, the leasehold farm called the Mill Farm, on 100 acres, with Mills, etc, but sons James and John to have equal shares in the Mills, etc. (Plan of farms, all on Lot 32, attached.) John to have one half of the upland hay. To James, lot No. 31 in 2nd Hundred in Charlotte Town. To son, John, Lot No. 32, in 2nd hundred of lots, in Ch'Town. To son John and James the other half of the Stock, Crop, and Farming Utensils in my possession, equally, and all other Personal estate not before mentioned, they to pay just debts, and Funeral expenses. / All children directed to continue dutiful and obedient to their mother. / Having equal regard for all my children, I do not omit to notice my daughters Margaret, the wife of Mr. Thomas Tod, and Anne, the wife of Mr. John Cameron (who received portions at marriage). / Sons James and John Executors. Dated 25 Aug. 1831. / William Hyde, L.S. / Witnesses:  John Crosby, James Crosby, Chas. Binns. / Probate granted 9 Jan., 1832. (Reg of Probate, #18).  Above cf.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
     The 8-sided house was a phenomenon created in the mid-nineteenth century by Orson S. Fowler, an American, who published "The Octagonal House: A Home for All" in 1848. Fowler was an amateur architect and lifestyle pundit and a proponent of the octagonal house (cf. wikipedia).  This would not apply to the  Hyde House as it was built prior to the death of Mr. Hyde in 1831. 
     I do not know of any 8-sided houses built on Prince Edward Island, however, there have been a few barns.  Below is the Capt. George Anderson's 2-storey octagonal house in Sackville, New Brunswick - built in 1855.  In the mid twenthieth-century the house was used for many years by the Enterprise Foundry Company.  In 1989 the Town of Sackville purchased, moved and restored the house - today it's a Visitor Information Center.  ( )

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Prince Edward Island Farmhouse 1970s

     My 85-year-old first cousin once removed in Massachusetts has been sending me alot of photos he took on visits to Prince Edward Island in the late 1960's / early 1970's.  Here's an unidentified photo he just sent me - possibly in the Evangeline Region?

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Bayview School House 1914

     I came across this image of the Bayview School House on Earles Picture Restoration PEI Facebook page
     The school was located on the north side of Simpson's Mills on the Simpson Mill Road in Bayview (near to Cavendish).  Arnold Smith recalls accompanying his father George to deliver the winter's firewood here around 1961.  
     The school was closed in the early 1970's then bought by the Ellis family who moved it Cavendish behind the Cavendish Tourist Mart - the Ellis' built on an addition use it as a cottage today.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

West Cape School

     This school is one of the oldest in western Prince Edward Island.  It's located at the end west end of the O'Leary Road ( Route 142 ) beyond where it intersects with the shore road ( Rte. 14) on what is now called "School Road" and sits on a small parcel of privately owned land.  
      The school number was 39 and predates the Knutsford and Springfield West Schools as in the history of the Sillikers, who were amoung the first to arrive in Knutsford in 1855, it states: "The family travelled seven miles to West Cape School in an ox cart."
 I took these photos on Mother's Day, 2017

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Knutsford School

     Our family met on Mother's Day last Sunday at Knutsford School.  Our grandmother Empress (MacNevin) McDowell, our matriarch (pictured below) was pleased to have her three daughters and their families to celebrate the occasion.   Empress came to Knutsford 81 years ago when she married our grandfather Roy McDowell on March 2, 1936.  They were always community-minded people.  Empress continues to be an active member of the Knutsford Women's Institute.
    Over the past winter the Knutsford W.I. have been doing upgrades to the 140+ year old schoolhouse which today is used as a community hall. 
   A couple of years ago history panels are prepared to tell the story of's photos I took of them last Sunday. Another panel is being prepared to tell the story of our great-great-grandfather Capt. John Silliker, who along with his bother and others cut the O'Leary Road through to Knutsford about 1855 and were amount the earlier settlers of the area.  The Sillikers had 600-acres and donated the lumber and land to build the Methodist Church, with cemetery, and the School.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Ross' Mill, Bridgetown

     I bought this 20"x16" photo of Ross' Sawmill from Moe's Auctioneering Service yesterday.
     I took these up-close images of the photo - appears to have just had a new board-n-batten roof.
     More than twenty years ago I was contacted by a family member ( who was born and raised in Boston ) about re-building a house to match the family home that was still standing at Ross's Mill - it was not restorable.   We documented the house and produced drawings. Below are photos I took that day of the house and barn - both have long since disappeared.
     The following information comes from
A history of the north side of the Boughton River. 
Page 68.  

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Glenwood Farmstead for Sale, 1896

    Perry Batten of Royal LePage has this old Glenwood property listed for sale - check out his website.  Located at 2690 Glenwood Rd (Rte. 14).  The listing notes the house was built in 1896.
Below are photos from his listing. 

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Egmont Bay Rectory

     Below is the c.1886 Rectory of Eglise de Saint-Philippe et Saint-Jacque Parish, Egmont Bay.   I took these photos on March 25, 2010 just before they tour down the grand old church.  To get the rear views of the rectory and church I took the little short road behind the church called, Rennes Road.
View of the church and rectory from Rennes Road