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McLachlan House

306 Lincoln Street, Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, B0J, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1983/09/29

Front elevation, McLachlan House, Lunenburg, NS, ca. 1910; Courtesy of the Heritage Division, Province of Nova Scotia
Historic View
Front façade, McLachlan House, Lunenburg, NS, 2004.; Heritage Division, Province of Nova Scotia, 2004
Front Façade
East and south façades, McLachlan House, Lunenburg, NS, 2004.; Heritage Division, Province of Nova Scotia, 2004
East and South Façades

Other Name(s)


Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2009/06/10

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

McLachlan House is a large two-storey house on the southwest corner of Prince and Lincoln Streets in Old Town Lunenburg, a heritage conservation district. The house dates to early in the twentieth century, and has an octagonal tower and a wide veranda on the west end of the house, and drops down to include a full basement on the lower level in the rear. Municipal designation includes both the building and surrounding property.

Heritage Value

McLachlan House is valued for its late Victorian architecture and contribution to the surrounding streetscape. Built circa 1905 for dry goods merchant John McLachlan and his family, the house has a prominent location on Lincoln Street in Old Town Lunenburg. It sits on a steep slope overlooking the business district of Lunenburg and Lunenburg Harbour, and it is one of many large homes built for prominent families along Lincoln Street.

McLachlan House has many architectural features derived from the Eclectic Victorian style that was popular across North America at the turn of the twentieth century. The most noticeable of these are the tower with its conical roof, and the veranda with its decorative balustrades and fretwork. The current veranda was reconstructed in 1993 from earlier photographs of the house. The two-storey bays, tall octagonal tower and hipped roof also give the building height and distinction, and also give it contrast with the smaller, symmetrical appearance of the traditional vernacular architecture in Old Town Lunenburg.

Source: Notice of Recommendation to Register as a Town Heritage Property, Heritage Designation File 66400-40-02, Town of Lunenburg.

Character-Defining Elements

Character-defining elements of the McLachlan House relate to its late Victorian architectural style and significance within the surrounding streetscape, including:

- elements that speak to the Eclectic Victorian architectural style including such structural elements as the asymmetrical front façade, octagonal tower, deep veranda extending along the front and the western side of the building;
- decorative elements popular in Victorian architecture at the turn of the twentieth century, such as finials, highly decorative balustrades and trim on the veranda, bracketry and decorative panels on the tower under the eaves;
- elements that accentuate the height of the building, including the two-storey bay on the front façade, conical roof on the tower and sloping roof on the front veranda, hipped roof on the front elevation and steep gable roof in the rear, two tall chimneys, and extension down a full storey in the rear with the west end of the veranda accompanied by a second storey balcony;
- size and location of the house in a wealthy area of Lincoln Street.



Nova Scotia

Recognition Authority

Local Governments (NS)

Recognition Statute

Heritage Property Act

Recognition Type

Municipally Registered Property

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Peopling the Land

Function - Category and Type


Commerce / Commercial Services
Hotel, Motel or Inn


Single Dwelling

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Town of Lunenburg, 119 Cumberland Street, Box 129, Lunenburg, NS, B0J 2C0, File 66400-4-02

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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