Description of Historic Place
Located on the east side of Central Street just north of the intersection with Church Street, this two storey house is clad in yellow siding with red gable ends. It has white trim and asphalt shingles on the roof. There are hints of Queen Anne style in its overall design. The footprint is T-shaped with single storey additions on the east and south elevations. The registration includes the parcel and the building.
The house at 67 Central Street has heritage value as the former Mawley House, which from 1907 to 1946 operated as a place of hospitality for travellers and lodgers. It was open to the public from 1946 to 1952 as the Bonnie Brae Inn, but its association with the Mawley name is still strong in the minds of many Summerside residents. Over the years several prominent Summerside citizens have been associated with the "Mawley House".
The large building was constructed in 1907 as a hotel to be operated by its owners, Jane and Caroline Mawley. The Mawley sisters had purchased an earlier structure in 1900, but lost it in the Great Fire of 1906. They were daughters of Edmund Mawley and Sarah Bagg who moved to Summerside in 1866 to operate the Clifton House which served the travelling public for close to a century. In 1900, Jane and Caroline went into the hospitality trade on their own accord and the Clifton Hotel was taken over by two other sisters, Margaret and Georgie.
In February 1907, Jane and Caroline Mawley awarded the contract for their new hotel to John M. Clark and Company. A newspaper reported: "The new building will be a two and a half story house 31 by 28 with an L 28 by 26 feet." The building was ready for occupancy in October of 1907. The newspaper stated: "The Misses Mawley are now prepared to accommodate permanent and transient boarders. The new Mawley House occupies the site of the one destroyed in the disastrous fire a year ago and is in every way a handsomer, more commodious and more modern building. Commercial and other travellers desiring all the conveniences of the best modern hotels, the comforts of a well kept home and catering by the best of cooks cannot get better suited anywhere than at the Mawley House."
In 1913, Caroline Mawley passed away after a long illness and Jane carried on alone with the help of several live-in staff persons. When she decided to retire in 1919, the hotel property was advertised for sale, but no one came forward until 1922 when Miss Emma Bearisto, the former housekeeper of the Prince County Hospital, leased the Mawley House. When Jane Mawley died in 1927 the property was willed to her nephew, Ethelbert Clifton Mawley, who arrived in Summerside from New York. Within two weeks the hotel was renamed The Silver Fox Inn but the venture was short-lived. In the fall of 1928, the house with its fourteen bedrooms was put on the market and sold.
The new owner was Frank A. Johnston, a son of local businessman Thomas Johnston, who had returned to Summerside from Moncton, New Brunswick to become manager of the town's electrical plant. He and his wife, the former Eudavilla Lefurgey, continued the tradition of serving guests. When Mr. Johnston acquired a position as engineer of the new CNR Hotel in Charlottetown in 1932, the couple arranged for Mrs. Johnston's sister, Mrs. Bruce Davison, to operate the hotel.
Henrietta Davison was the operator of the business until around 1940. It was then taken over by Mrs. Pearl A. Stavert for several years. Mrs. Johnston sold the property in June 1946 to Lloyd Anderson. The name was changed to the Bonnie Brae Inn and it operated under this identity until the mortgage holder sold it in 1952.
The new owner was John Mungall who had come to PEI from Scotland in 1945 to train as a navigator at RCAF Station Summerside. After serving with the RCAF as an accounting officer until December 1947, he returned to Summerside and married Edith Dye in 1948. That same year, he was hired as an accountant at the Journal Publishing Company. He later advanced to the position of manager and publisher of the newspaper. He retired in 1972 and began renting the house as apartments. The ground floor remained the home of Mr. and Mrs. Mungall until 1991. The large structure was sold that year and again in 1995 as an apartment house and currently has four units.
Source: City of Summerside, Heritage Property Profile
The heritage value of the Mawley House at 67 Central Street is expressed through these character-defining elements:
- the two-storey massing of the house with wood frame and large steeply pitched gable roof all on a T-shaped footprint
- the pedimented gable ends and dentilation on the entablature of the main section, and dentilation extends along the north and south elevations of the T extension to the east
- the many windows located in original locations and sizing, symmetrical on west and south elevations, asymmetrically placed elsewhere
- the concrete foundation and the three brick chimneys, a large one on the main section, one at the east end of the T and one on the 1 storey gable extension of the T
- the small one storey gable extension off the east elevation of the T and it has a hipped roof porch or vestibule off its east elevation
- the one storey hipped roofed extension off the south elevation of the main section
- the hipped roof dormers on the west elevation of the main section and the north elevation of the T extension
- the contribution of the house to the heritage character of the streetscape