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John W. Stewart House

85 Stratford Road, Stratford, Prince Edward Island, C1B, Canada

Formally Recognized: 2008/11/10

Showing front and side elevations; Images East Photography, 2008
Showing front and side elevations
Showing side elevation; Images East Photography, 2008
Showing side elevation
Residence and tannery of J.W. Stewart; Meacham's Illustrated Historical Atlas of PEI, 1880
Residence and tannery of J.W. Stewart

Other Name(s)


Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2008/11/21

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

This Maritime Vernacular style cottage is located close to the street on Stratford Road. It features a symmetrical facade with central entrance. The gable roof has a large gabled dormer centred above the entrance.

Heritage Value

The house is valued for its Maritime Vernacular style and for its association with an early industry in the Town of Stratford.

John W. Stewart built the home as his residence in the 1850s. He operated a tannery adjacent to the house. This was featured in an engraving of the property in Meacham's Atlas in 1880.

Stewart learned his trade from John Rendle, an English immigrant who worked as a tanner in the area in the 1860s.

Operating a tannery involved a great deal of labour. Hides were first purchased from local farmers usually after they had butchered livestock. These were then marked with the owner's initials and washed several times until softened. They were then placed in a lime pit for several days - then removed and stacked to dry. This process was repeated until the hair on the hides could be scrapped off. When the hair was gone, the hides were placed in a tanning pit with tannin or tanic acid.

The tannin could be extracted from the bark of hemlock trees. This was harvested from the Island's forests and often taken by boat to Stewart's tannery. Stewart later sold the business to his brother-in-law, George Forbes of Vernon River. A later owner was a seacaptain, Garret Hubley. The current owners have resided there since 1962. The tannery was eventually torn down and no evidence of it remains today.

The house retains many of its original elements and the property remains an important link to the history of an early industry in the town.

Source: Culture and Heritage Division, PEI Department of Communities, Cultural Affairs and Labour, Charlottetown, PE C1A 7N8
File #: 4310-20/S18

Character-Defining Elements

The heritage value of the house is shown in the following character-defining elements:

- the original sandstone foundation
- the one-and-one-half storey wood frame construction
- the symmetrical facade
- the gable roof
- the brick chimney
- the centred gabled dormer
- the fenestration of the windows and doors



Prince Edward Island

Recognition Authority

Province of Prince Edward Island

Recognition Statute

Heritage Places Protection Act

Recognition Type

Registered Historic Place

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Architecture and Design

Function - Category and Type



Single Dwelling

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Culture and Heritage Division, PEI Department of Communities, Cultural Affairs and Labour, Charlottetown, PE C1A 7N8 File #: 4310-20/S18

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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