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Zwicker House

13-15 King Street, Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, B0J, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1989/07/27

Zwicker House, Old Town Lunenburg, front façade, 2004; Heritage Division, Nova Scotia Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, 2004
Front façade detail
Zwicker House, Old Town Lunenburg, south façade, 2004; Heritage Division, Nova Scotia Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, 2004
South façade
Zwicker House, Old Town Lunenburg, front façade, 2004; Heritage Division, Nova Scotia Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, 2004
Front façade

Other Name(s)

Zwicker House
Compass Rose Inn
Mariner King Bed & Breakfast

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1829/01/01 to 1836/01/01

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2005/01/19

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

Zwicker House is located at the corner of King and Pelham Streets in the centre of Old Town, a Heritage Conservation District in Lunenburg, NS. Built between 1829 and 1836, the building is two-and-a-half storey wooden home with Italianate features, built across the streetline. Designation covers the building and surrounding property.

Heritage Value

Zwicker House is valued as a typical example of early nineteenth century Lunenburg houses. Originally Georgian in design, the roof and front elevation were renovated to reflect Victorian tastes sometime before 1879. The interior, particularly the main floor, remains Georgian in character. The building has a central 'Lunenburg Bump', a local derivation of the five-sided Scottish dormer, which has been integrated with a projecting frontispiece to suggest Italianate design. The detailing on the front of the wood shingled building is original, and includes ornamentation around the front door and windows. The building has recently been repainted in charcoal grey to reflect the common practice of nineteenth century mariners to paint their homes the colour of their ships.

The house is also valued for its associations with the Zwicker family of Lunenburg. It was purchased from the original owner in 1836 by Lunenburg merchant and ship owner, John Zwicker, and remained in the Zwicker family until the 1950s. A notable member of that family who lived in this house was Sherman Zwicker, a former mayor of Lunenburg.

Source: Heritage Designation File 66400-40-08, Town of Lunenburg.

Character-Defining Elements

Character-defining elements of Zwicker House include:

- all original Georgian details, such as: hipped roof with a central dormer; interior features, such as archways and fireplace surrounds; wide cornerboards on all corners; balanced three bay façade; large bracketed canopy over the front door.
- all original Victorian details such as: prominent 'Lunenburg Bump' dormer joined with a projecting central frontispiece to form an Italianate front; detailing around door and windows, and under the door canopy; bracketing over windows and doors; tall two-over-two windows.



Nova Scotia

Recognition Authority

Local Governments (NS)

Recognition Statute

Heritage Property Act

Recognition Type

Municipally Registered Property

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Peopling the Land

Function - Category and Type


Commerce / Commercial Services
Hotel, Motel or Inn


Single Dwelling

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

W. Plaskett, "Lunenburg: An Inventory of Historic Buildings" (Lunenburg: Lighthouse Press, 1984)

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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Lunenburg Old Town Heritage Conservation District

Lunenburg is located on the southwest coast of Nova Scotia. The Old Town Heritage Conservation District is located on a hilly peninsula between Lunenburg (Front) Harbour and the…


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