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The United Counties of Prescott and Russell owns these buildings, having purchased them from Claude Brabant in 2015. At left is the County Registry Office building. Photo: Louise Sproule

City of Clarence-Rockland is tops when it comes to municipal heritage designations

Municipal heritage designations are listed on the Ontario Heritage Trust website and create a level of protection for historical properties. While such designations do not control interior renovations, they do mean that building permits made in connection with these properties usually require a higher level of approval. Applications for demolition also go before council when they are connected to properties with a municipal heritage designation.

With eight designated heritage sites, the City of Clarence-Rockland leads the way when it comes to the number of properties designated as having a cultural heritage.

In Clarence-Rockland, the former Edwards sawmill at 101 Edwards Street is on the list of municipal heritage properties. It was built in 1868. Also on the list of municipally-designated heritage properties are: the former Baptist Church (built in 1890) at 1587 Laurier Street; the Municipal Library at 2085 Laurier Street (built in 1927); the Rockland Town Hall at 1560 Laurier Street (built in 1905); the Très Sainte-Trinité Church at 2184 Laurier Street (built in 1917); the rectory of the Très Sainte-Trinité Church at 2178 Laurier Street (built in 1917); the St. Andrews Community Centre (formerly the English Public School) at 1595 Laurier Street (built in 1880) and the Dr. Annie Powers Tree (a Colorado Spruce was designated a Tree of the Millennium in 2000 — at that time, about 80 years old).

The Township of Russell has two municipally-designated heritage properties listed on the Ontario Heritage Trust website. The Land Registry Office, located at 1122 Concession Street in Russell was built in 1874-1875. The Warner building (92 Mill Street), which is described as a late 19th-century commercial block typical for the historic character of Russell, is also a municipally-designated property.

In The Nation Municipality, St-Bernard Parish Church at 5142 County Road 10 in Fournier has been designated as a heritage building (built 1885-1886) and the Proulx Cheese Factory on part of Lot 7, concession 5 of the former Township of Caledonia has also been designated a municipal heritage site. It is said to have been built in the Township of West Hawkesbury in 1890 by Samuel Fraser, but was moved to Proulx Corner in 1918 by Alexander McDonald. It operated until 1960.

The Town of Hawkesbury has one municipally-designated heritage building; the Maison de l’Ile at Le Chenail has been designated a heritage building. It is described as one of the rare buildings in Hawkesbury from the 19th century, thought to be constructed circa 1862.

Within Champlain Township, there are a few municipally-designated heritage buildings. Five of the seven properties are located in L’Orignal, including: 36 Court Street (the County Registry Office), 52 Wharf Street, 1008 King Street, 996 King Street, the Courthouse and the Old L’Orignal Jail (59 Court Street), and Duldraeggan Hall at 37 Front Road (built in 1821). In Vankleek Hill, the Higginson Tower has been designated as a municipal heritage property (built circa 1830).

In the Township of East Hawkesbury, the Macdonell-Williamson House at 25 Rue des Outaouais in Chute-à-Blondeau/Pointe-Fortune, Ontario is a National Historic Site owned by Ontario Heritage Trust, which acquired it in 1978 to save it from demolition, and conducted extensive architectural and archaeological investigations on the property. The site is supported today by volunteers, who raise funds for ongoing repairs and restoration and organize events.

The Parks Canada website notes that: ”Macdonell House was designated a national historic site of Canada in 1969 because: this house is one of the finest of several built in the area by retired North West Company fur trading partners; an elegant local adaptation of the Palladian style, its impressive stone exterior and exquisitely detailed interior proclaimed Macdonell’s position as a major business and political figure along the Ottawa River.

The heritage value of Macdonell House resides in its early origins and compelling architectural presence as well as in its association with John Macdonell and, through him, major commercial and settlement phenomena. Value lies in the fine design, materials, and craftsmanship of the residence, both interior and exterior, as well as its location.

Macdonell House was built in 1817-1819 for former North West Company partner John Macdonell and his Métis wife, Magdeleine Poitras. Macdonell was one of several former North West Company officials who built retirement homes on the Ottawa River west of Montreal early in the 19th century. Macdonell died in 1850. In 1882, the house was purchased by the Williamson family who were residents until 1961, when it was expropriated for the construction of the Quebec Hydro Dam at Carillon, which then passed ownership to the Ontario Heritage Foundation in 1978.”

In Alfred-Plantagenet, there are no municipally-designated heritage properties.

In Casselman, the railway station located at 66 St. Joseph Street is listed as a designated heritage railway in an Ontario directory of Heritage Railway Stations. The designation is dated 1994. The railway station is owned by VIA Rail Canada and is leased to the City of Casselman for one dollar per year as part of a 50-year lease which is in effect until June 2059. The municipality covers property taxes and other expenses related to the property connected to the rental and use of the space.

Tip of the Hat: Visit the Town of East Hawkesbury website for a photo gallery of buildings from the municipality’s past.

 

 

 

 

 

Louise Sproule

Louise Sproule has been the publisher of The Review since 1992. A part-time job after high school at The Review got Sproule hooked on community newspapers and all that they represent. She loves to write, has covered every kind of event you can think of, loves to organize community events and loves her small town and taking photographs across the region. She dreams of writing a book one day so she can finally tell all of the town's secrets! She must be stopped! Keep subscribing to The Review . . . or else!

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