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Showing posts from September, 2018

Bit of a Mystery, Solved -- Part 2

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The breakthrough to this mystery building came when I found it on Google Street View.    On my iPad, I navigated around the building to the Bethune Street side where I saw an entrance door with a house number (hidden here by a tree).  Eureka.  It was in fact a house on Bethune Street, not a mystery building on Edinburgh!


This house is another case of an unusual placement, with the property not facing the street.  Placing the house in this direction gave it the best vantage point for a magnificent view of Peterborough from this hill.  The house was built in the 1880s by James R. Donnell Jr., partner in the construction firm Donnell and Stabler.  The house backs on to Edinburgh.  Originally there was a good sized front garden that overlooked a Donnell Family compound, comprised of a modest 1870s brick house also built by James Junior, and his father James Donnell Senior's 1840s family homestead cottage to the south.  Both these houses are still standing, but the family homes have b…

Bit of a Mystery -- Part 1

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Back in May I took this photo of a building I couldn't identify.  Quite sizeable, it sits perched on the south east hillside corner of Edinburgh and Bethune.

I always approached it from the east, which shows a walkout basement made of stone.


It reminded me of nineteenth century French country houses, but it reminded me even more of 1860s era schools.  The 1875 Romaine map shows an empty lot, one of two lots owned by James Donnell that comprised the east side of Bethune Street from Dublin to Edinburgh.  I wondered if it was some special private school.  I couldn't find any reference to such a place on Edinburgh, but kept it on the back burner in case I came across something.

Mystery solved in Part 2...please read on!

Ashburnham - Part 3

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Beside each other on Robinson Street, two large red brick, two and a half storey houses were built twenty years apart.  Both were owned by wealthy Ashburnham business families.  It's interesting to see how the popular architectural styles changed in just a few decades.  One hundred years later, houses built in the 1960s were much smaller than those built in the 1980s.  Not so different from Victorian times!
The Henry Calcutt House, 1866

Victorian gothic with gingerbread style wood trim.  The house remained in the Calcutt family from 1869 until the late 1940s.  Calcutt owned a brewery on the Otonabee River, just west of his house.  Calcutt also owned a steamship line which ran along the river to Rice Lake.  His vessels provided a necessary waterway link for railway passengers, and also ran recreational excursions.
Lakeview, the John C. Sullivan House, 1886

This Italianate style Victorian mansion originally also had iron cresting on the roof, and the long thin windows had shutters. …