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Allison Peck House

2832 Main Street, Hillsborough, New Brunswick, E4H, Canada

Formally Recognized: 2010/02/01

This image shows the southwest corner of the house. This home appears to be just a picket fence and rambling rose type of house. However it was home to one of the most properous businesses in the  village. ; Village of Hillsborough
Allison Peck House
View from the northeast corner. Allison Peck's drug store was attached to the facing wall.; Village of Hillsborough
Allison Peck House
C. Allison Peck's house and store viewed from the west, 1968. The million dollar pump was in the backyard.; Village of Hillsborough, William Henry Steeves House archives
Allison Peck House

Other Name(s)


Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2011/04/20

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Allison Peck House is a two-storey Queen Anne Revival dwelling with a large two-storey bay window. Built in 1870, this residence is located on Main Street in the centre of the Village of Hillsborough.

Heritage Value

The Allison Peck House was designated a Local Historic Place for its architecture, for its association with the people who have lived there and for the charm it has lent to the center of the village since 1870.

A store has stood on this corner since 1820; however, it was not until 1870 that John A. Beatty added this attached house as his residence. This residence is an excellent example of rural Queen Anne Revival architecture in New Brunswick.

Mr. Beatty converted the store to an apothecary from which he dispensed drugs until 1895. John A. Beatty was the son of John Beatty Sr., who owned the Bay View Hotel across the street on the northeast corner of Mill and Main Streets. John A. apprenticed to become an apothecary and opened the second drug store in the village in 1870.

In 1894 Mr. C. Allison Peck, the son of Hopewell lawyer and member of the Provincial Legislature, Charles A. Peck, finished his training as a druggist and decided to set up shop in Hillsborough. He bought Mr. Beatty’s house and store and also won the hand of his daughter, Mary Beatty. Before the turn of the century, Mr. Peck had completed three years of correspondence courses and passed the exam to become an optometrist. Although he dispensed drugs for sixty years, retiring in 1955, his career as an optometrist spanned sixty-seven years ending with his passing in 1964 when he was 92 years of age, and the oldest practicing optometrist in North America. He and his wife introduced the first ice cream parlour to the village and the "toyland” they featured on the second floor of their store each Christmas rivalled the displays of their much larger competitors in nearby Moncton. In addition to his professional pursuits, Mr. Peck was a noted geologist, naturalist and gardener.

Mr. Peck’s career as a druggist spanned many of the years during which the sale of liquor was prohibited in New Brunswick between 1884 and 1927. During prohibition possession of liquor in the home was not illegal; however, its sale, or public consumption was a criminal offence. The one exception was the sale of liquor for medicinal purposes. After his visit to the doctor the next stop was to a drug store to have the prescription filled. Behind C. Allison Peck’s house and drug store was a hand water pump. The wags of the community christened this, ‘the million dollar pump’, maliciously reasoning this to be the value of the water Mr. Peck had used from the pump to dilute liquor before selling it as medicine.

Source: Heritage Hillsborough, William Henry Steeves House Museum, Local Historic Places files

Character-Defining Elements

The character-defining elements relating to the exterior elements of the Allison Peck House include:
- two-storey irregular massing;
- moderately-pitched lateral gable roof;
- return eaves at gable ends;
- gable roofed dormer with fan and torch ornamenting;
- multi-paned two-storey bay window;
- portico with single square support pillars and balustrades;
- wooden steps;
- double-hung windows with entablatures;
- brackets with spooled drops under eaves;
- mainly clapboard sheathing;
- partial sheathing of painted decorative wooden shingles;
- large entablature over the main entrance door;
- inset red brick chimney.



New Brunswick

Recognition Authority

Local Governments (NB)

Recognition Statute

Heritage Conservation Act

Recognition Type

Local Historic Place (municipal)

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Developing Economies
Trade and Commerce
Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Architecture and Design
Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life

Function - Category and Type



Single Dwelling

Architect / Designer



Richard Gross

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Heritage Hillsborough Inc., William Henry Steeves House Museum, 40 Mill Street, Hillsborough, NB, E4H 1Z9

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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