The Kelly House
The Harrison House
The (Kelly) Harrison House
Links and documents
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
This two-and-one-half storey red brick house on the west side of Main Street was designed and built around 1910 by Tom Mills and his sons, for the family of his son William. As one of the larger and more elaborate houses in North Gower, the Kelly House is a good example of the vernacular interpretation of the Queen Anne style and is an important component of the main streetscape.
The Kelly House is recognized for its heritage value by the Township of Rideau (now City of Ottawa), By-law number 32/89.
As one of the larger and more elaborate houses in North Gower, the Kelly House is a good example of the vernacular interpretation of the Queen Anne style. It is an important component of the Main Street streetscape with its size demonstrating prominence.
The Kelly House is associated with the formation of the village of North Gower in the early twentieth century. This tall red brick house was designed and built by Tom Mills, who was a busy and accomplished builder in the village, in the early 1900s. A smaller red brick house, across Main Street, beside the old town hall, and the carpentry in the 1905 Anglican Rectory, beside the church on Church Street, are other surviving examples of his work. It has been suggested that the house beside the town hall was built for practice before beginning the Kelly House.
After William Mills and his family moved from the Kelly House, it was rented for a short time until Fred Mills, one of William's brothers, and his family moved in. Fred Mills was originally a carpenter who worked with his father until sometime in the 1900s, when he gave up carpentry to become a mechanic. He acquired the skills for his new profession by taking apart a Model “T” Ford and then putting it back together again. Upon Fred Mill's death in 1953, his son Eldon and his family moved into the house. In 1961 Eldon Mills sold the house to Burton Harrison, who sold it to his son Trevor in 1978, who then sold it to Mark and Denise Kelly in 1986.
The Kelly House is a good example of the Queen Anne Revival style of architecture. This style, popular from the 1880's until 1914, was a revival of architectural features and ideas introduced during the reign of Britain's Queen Anne (1702-1714). The house is a large two-and-a-half storey solid red brick structure with a truncated hip roof sheathed with metal roofing. The basically square mass of the building is broken up by an inset two storey veranda which covers part of the front and side elevations and is adjoined by a two storey bay window, terminating in a gable, with a recessed balcony. There are small gabled dormers, patterned window transoms and decorative treillage on both levels of the verandas. The bricks of the house are stamped with a “T.B” which indicates that they were probably made at the Taylor brick factory on the Rideau River.
Sources: Rideau Township Archives LACAC file; City of Ottawa By-law 32/89.
Character defining elements that reflect the heritage value of The Kelly House includes its:
- two-and-a-half storey red brick construction
- truncated hip roof sheathed with metal roofing
- two storey wrap-around veranda which is adjoined by a two storey bay window terminating in a gable with a recessed balcony
- small gabled dormers
- patterned window transoms
- decorative treillage on both levels of the veranda
- size and massing demonstrating its prominence in the streetscape
- location on Main Street
Local Governments (ON)
Ontario Heritage Act
Municipal Heritage Designation (Part IV)
Theme - Category and Type
Function - Category and Type
- Single Dwelling
Architect / Designer
Location of Supporting Documentation
City of Ottawa
110 Laurier Avenue West
Cross-Reference to Collection