Five homes in Halifax were added to HRM’s registry of heritage properties.
The heritage designation restricts what kind of alterations can be made to the house, and in return, the property owner becomes eligible for up to $15,000 in grants for “exterior conservation work” on the house.
HRM planners and the owners of three of the newly registered homes were at Halifax regional council on Tuesday to make presentations during four hearings regarding the designations.
First up, was a presentation on the home at 6484 Jubilee Rd, otherwise known as The Jubilee House. The home is currently owned by TV producer John Wesley Chisholm, who started a petition earlier this month for support for heritage designation for the home. To date, that petition has more than 5,000 signatures.
The home’s first owner was Harry Isaac Mathers, whose father, Isaac Henry Mathers, founded I. H. Mathers Ltd. Shipping Agents, which is still active today. Harry Mathers served as the company’s president.
The home was designed by architect Allison Graham Creighton and built by St. Clair Alexander Hiltz. Mathers named the home “Red Gables” and lived there from 1921 until his death in 1945.
Heritage planning researcher Carter Beaupre-McPhee made the presentation on The Jubilee House. Some of the home’s characteristics include its Tudor-revival style with steeply pitched roof and intersecting gables, stucco and wood faux half-timbering, which is rare in Nova Scotia, and a unique rear bay window, second-storey balcony, and flanking sunrooms.
The home still has much of its original character, although the roof was replaced with asphalt shingles, and the original porches were enclosed as sunrooms.
Chisholm attended council to speak about his home and said a previous owner, Boofie Chisholm (no relation to John Wesley), used the home for special events, including fundraisers for community groups, and also hosted a “steady stream” of boarders at the home.
“We’ve seen so many people who’ve been part of the house’s story,” Chisholm told council. “If I counted up everybody who said they had a part of the story of The Jubilee House, we would have hundreds of people who lived there.”
Jubilee House scored 70 out of 100 on the Heritage Advisory Committee’s (HAC) registration evaluation criteria.
1741-1743 and 1745 Henry St.
Three of the homes added to the registry are located on Henry Street in Halifax’s west end. HRM heritage planner Elizabeth Cushing made presentations on the homes at 1741 to 1743 Henry St. and 1745 Henry St.
Halifax contractor and mason Edward Maxwell started construction on the homes at 1741 and 1743 Henry St. in 1917. Maxwell is also known for his work with S.P. Dumaresq on the
Infant’s Home on Tower Road.
The homes are a Edwardian Classicism and made from concrete blocks, a style that was popular between 1900 and 1930. Some of the homes defining characteristics include two-storey rounded bay, rock-faced stone cladding laid in even courses, and a flat roof with bracketed extended cornice.
The homes scored a 74 out of 100 on the HAC evalution.
Marcia Connolly, the current owner who’s lived at the home for nine and a half years, said she took her role as “steward” of her home “very seriously,” telling council she’s done many repairs and restoration to the home.
“I’m very grateful to Elizabeth and her research because many times when I’m outside of the property, people ask me about the property,” Connelly said.
“Two of the previous owners, one of whom was a child when she lived there, knock on the door, ask about the property, ask me how I feel about it. So, I now have a lot more information to share with anybody who wants to engage in conversation about the property.”
Meanwhile, 1745 Henry St. is the same style and history as the homes at 1741 to 1743 Henry St., and is located across the street, but as Cushing noted, had to be presented separately because it has a different property identification number.
The current owner of 1745 Henry St. has owned the home since 2020, but his parents purchased the house in 1989.
“I know the home was a bit overbudget, but my mother insisted that we own it,” said the owner who didn’t share his name.
“Something drew her to it. I don’t know exactly what it is, but obviously it’s a unique and very special building… I think it’s something that makes Halifax a special city is our heritage architecture.”
6038 Charles St.
The final presentation was on a home at 6038 Charles St. in Halifax. This “Halifax Box” style home was built in 1899, and its design elements include features borrowed from Second Empire, Queen Anne, and Italianate styles. The home has had minor modifications, and an addition was built on the home sometime before 1911.
The home was built by contractors Frederick C. Campbell and Thomas D. Shand. Shand once owned and operated a mill on Edward Street, which is a block over from Henry Street.
Homes at 6032 to 6034 Charles St. were recently added to the heritage registry.
The Charles Street home scored a 58 on the heritage advisory committee evaluation. The current owner of the home wasn’t at council on Tuesday to make a presentation.
Council voted to approve all homes for the registry.