Home / Accueil

Whitely House

58, Elgin Avenue East, Town of Goderich, Ontario, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1978/02/02

Featured is the bay window on the west elevation.; Kayla Jonas, 2007.
West Elevation, Whitely House, 2007
Featured is the decorative bargeboard on the veranda.; Kayla Jonas, 2007.
Detailed View, Whitely House, 2007
Featured is the symmetrical three bay façade with veranda.; Kayla Jonas, 2007.
Façade, Whitely House, 2007

Other Name(s)

Whitely House
58 Elgin Avenue East

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2009/12/31

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Whitely House, located at 58 Elgin Avenue East, is on the south side of Elgin Avenue East, between Victoria Street and Stanley Street, in the Town of Goderich. The two storey clapboard residence was constructed circa 1855.

The property was designated by the Town of Goderich in 1978 for its architectural value under Part IV of the Ontario Heritage Act (By-law 7 of 1978).

Heritage Value

The Whitely House is representative of one of the many properties in the Town of Goderich originally owned by the Canada Company. The Canada Company was a private British land development company based in Goderich whose primary responsibility was the settlement and population of Upper Canada, specifically the Huron Tract, a large part of which is now the County of Huron.

The property was sold by the Canada Company in 1856 to Joseph Whitely whose son James lived in the house. James was a prominent Goderich citizen and used a portion of the house for his successful surgery practice. The house reflects both the Canada Company's early influence on the town as well as the entrepreneurial spirit of early Goderich.

The Whitely House is a fine example of the Georgian style of architecture. Constructed circa 1855, the rectangular plan, two storey residence's heavy timber frame is sheathed in clapboard. Typical of the Georgian style, the residence displays symmetrical proportions, a gable roof and minimal detailing. The three bay façade features a front entrance with original sidelights and transom, flanked by double hung windows on the first storey. Most notable on the structure is the west elevation's bay window and the façade's veranda which were both additions circa 1880. The veranda features a delicately carved fret as well as decorative bargeboard, both of which are typical of houses from this period in Goderich.

Located on the fringe of downtown Goderich, the Whitely house is a successful conversion of a residence into a commercial structure. The structure blends into the neighbourhood scheme and forms an excellent buffer between the commercial area of downtown Goderich to the north and the residential district to the south and west.

Source: Town of Goderich, By-law 7 of 1978.

Character-Defining Elements

Character defining elements that contribute to the heritage value of the Whitely House include its:
- rectangular plan
- timber frame construction
- clapboard exterior
- gable roof
- symmetrical three bay façade
- double hung windows with peaked headings
- central entrance with original sidelights and transom
- chimneys on each gabled end including decorative brickwork tops
- veranda including fine fretwork and bargeboard
- bay window on the west elevation
- return eaves
- location on the edge of downtown Goderich




Recognition Authority

Local Governments (ON)

Recognition Statute

Ontario Heritage Act

Recognition Type

Municipal Heritage Designation (Part IV)

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

1880/01/01 to 1880/01/01

Theme - Category and Type

Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Architecture and Design
Peopling the Land

Function - Category and Type


Commerce / Commercial Services
Office or Office Building


Single Dwelling

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Town of Goderich Town Hall 57 West Street Goderich, Ontario N7A 2K5

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




Related Places



Advanced SearchAdvanced Search
Nearby Places