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Whale Cove Cottages

26 Whale Cottage Road, Grand Manan, New Brunswick, Canada

Formally Recognized: 2010/01/11

This image shows the main house of the Whale Cove Cottages where the dining hall is operated seasonally.  ; Whale Cove Cottages
Whale Cove Cottages - Main house - 2009
In 2009, two of the cottages at Whale Cove were renovated from farm buildings in the early 1900's to make summer accommodations.  ; Whale Cove Cottages
Whale Cove Cottages - Orchard and cooper shop
This image shows one of the cottages at Whale Cove in its peaceful setting.; Linda L'Aventure
Whale Cove Cottages - Cottage

Other Name(s)

Whale Cove Cottages
Inn at Whale Cove Cottages
Auberge aux chalets Whale Cove

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2010/03/30

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

Whale Cove Cottages are located overlooking Whale Cove Harbour in the community of North Head, Grand Manan. The entrance to the cottages is as mystical as the setting. Hidden on Whistle Road there is the side road called the Whale Cove Cottage Road marked by a sign decorated with many fisherman buoys. Down a tree lined drive you come to an open area overlooking the cove with the cottages nestled in the centre of a small clearing. The designation includes a main farmhouse and three cottages.

Heritage Value

Whale Cove Cottages on Grand Manan Island are designated a Local Historic Place for being a unique place that is open for the public to escape by stepping back into history in this gentle rustic setting. Each Cottage was originally used as a farm building. The main house was built in 1816. The other cottages were built in 1840. These cottages, originally a cooper settler’s farmstead, were rescued from deterioration in 1900-1902 by four industrious ladies from Boston. Miss Sarah Jacobus, Barbara Adams, Miss Marie Felix, and Miss Alice Coney purchased the property and worked at renovating the existing buildings into the Whale Cove Cottages. The original buildings were a barn, cooper shop, main house, and guest house. At first there were no plumbing of any sort, no electric lights, no radio and no telephone. These names have stayed with the buildings except for the guest house which became known as Orchardside Cottage due to the apple orchard in its front yard. Today, the main house has a public dining hall. The barn was replaced by a cottage built in 1920. It was to this location that the famous author Willa Cather would escape in her early years of spending summers on Grand Manan. She later had her own cottage a short distance from Whale Cove Cottages. Although Whale Cove Cottages have most modern conveniences, their interiors have not lost their simple appeal and their exteriors remain in cedar shingles.

Source: Grand Manan Archives - Local Historic Places file and Willa Cather file

Character-Defining Elements

The character-defining elements that describe the overall complex of Whale Cove Cottages include:
- sightlines to Whale Cove Harbour, where fishing boats and the occasional whale is visible;
- main farmhouse dating back to 1816;
- two farm buildings converted into cottages at the turn of the 20th century;
- small cottage built in 1920 located in front of the main house;
- all buildings sheathed in cedar shingles with painted doors;
- Georgian/Cape Cod architecture intact for all buildings.

The character-defining elements relating to the interior of the main house include:
- original elements of the large living room or sitting room including a large built-in fireplace and a window seat looking out over the front lawn and apple orchard;
- combined hand-hewn and modern beams;
- dining room located off the sitting room with the kitchen at the back of the building;
- wide floor boards;
- low ceiling;
- walls decorated with ‘Blue Willow’ china.



New Brunswick

Recognition Authority

Local Governments (NB)

Recognition Statute

Local Historic Places Program

Recognition Type

Municipal Register of Local Historic Places

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

1900/01/01 to 1902/01/01

Theme - Category and Type

Developing Economies
Trade and Commerce
Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Architecture and Design
Peopling the Land
People and the Environment

Function - Category and Type



Commerce / Commercial Services
Hotel, Motel or Inn
Commerce / Commercial Services
Shop or Wholesale Establishment
Single Dwelling
Food Supply
Barn, Stable or Other Animal Housing

Architect / Designer



Mr. Kendrick

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Grand Manan Archives, 1141 Route 776, Grand Manan, NB

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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