Description of Historic Place
This two-and-one-half storey Classical Revival influenced residence at 177 Summer Street is believed to have been built for George Green, the son of Summerside's Loyalist settler, Daniel Green and is one of the town's oldest dwellings. It is located on the east side of Summer Street at Green Street and features a symmetrical facade with projecting front entrance. The projection is topped by a pediment. The gable roof also features wide eave returns on the north and south elevations.
The house is valued for its well preserved Classical Revival style; for its association with the history of the Green family and the Anglican Church in Summerside; and for its contribution to the streetscape.
Daniel Green and his wife Martha Oat fled to Canada during the American Revolution and were granted land on Lot 17 in Prince Edward Island. The couple eventually had eleven children and the property was divided among their sons. The eldest, George, was given a strip of land running back from Bedeque Bay and bordered by the future streets known as Summer and Eustane.
George Green married Caroline Ann Campbell of Park Corner and the first of their nine children was born in 1809. It seems likely that this building at 177 Summer was built around 1840. Their son, John Green (b. 1815) known as John Junior in deference to his father's brother, inherited the family home. The community in the early 1800s was basically a series of farms owned by the Green descendants and was known as Green's Shore.
In 1890, the property was bought by Arthur C. Rogers who was married to John Green's youngest daughter, Ella Ann. The couple took her parents to live with them in St. Eleanors and the house on Green Street was sold to local businessman, Robert C. MacLeod.
Mr. MacLeod rented the property to John Hacker Henry, who was engaged in various enterprises, including the shipment of lambs, the cutting and hauling of ice from his pond at the west end of town, and the sale of McLaughlin "Gear Buggies." He lived in the house until he left the Island to settle in Alberta.
In 1899, Robert S. Bowness, a successful photographer purchased the property. He hired Patrick Ryan, who was in the business of moving buildings. According to a local newspaper: "Mr. R.S. Bowness has moved his residence on the John Green property, near the High School, to the south western part of the grounds, where he will make many improvements in the dwelling. He intends putting a frost proof cellar under the house, and putting in a hot water heating apparatus and a system of sewerage, and making some attractive external changes in the house itself."
Nearing retirement, R.S. Bowness decided to sell his home to Alfred W.P. Gourlie and build a new one on Central Street. When Gourlie died at age 32 in February 1912, his widow, Olive, was left with five young children. In March, she sold the property to the Wardens of St. Mary's Anglican Church.
The residence was a replacement for the Rectory that had stood next door to the original St. Mary's Church, both buildings having been destroyed in the Great Fire of 1906. The first Anglican rector to live in the house was Rev. Charles DeWolfe White, who had come to PEI in 1911. He brought his wife, along with nine children from their previous home in Kentville, Nova Scotia to his new home on Summer Street where he remained until 1938.
His replacement as rector was George R. Harrison who had served the Anglican Church in Springhill, Nova Scotia. It was during his time as rector that some major changes were made to the property. In 1931, the section of land running along Spring Street was sold to William S. Muttart and in 1944 it was decided to remodel the existing structure. According to the local press: "The Anglican Rectory in Summerside is being extensively remodelled and the building has been moved from its former site to the outer corner of Summer and Green Streets."
The firm of R.T. Holman Limited made substantial structural improvements including a new foundation, new chimney and fireplace, new plumbing and wiring, and a new heating system. An existing kitchen wing was removed and a new kitchen was configured into the layout of the first floor. The church annual report noted "the effort and money spent was worthwhile as we now have a Rectory in keeping with our other church property."
Source: City of Summerside, Heritage Property Profile
The heritage value of the house is shown in the following character-defining elements:
- the two-and-one-half storey massing with rectangular footprint
- the steeply pitched gable roof with asphalt shingles
- the double brick chimney
- the eave returns on the north and south elevations
- the moulded entablature
- the symmetrical arrangement of windows on the west, south, and north elevations
- the central projection with entrance and pedimented gable roof on the west elevation