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Henry House

1222 Barrington Street, Halifax, Nova Scotia, B3J, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1981/10/27

Barrington Street elevation, Henry House, Halifax, Nova Scotia, 2005.; Heritage Division, NS Dept. of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, 2005
Front Elevation
Barrington Street elevation and side elevation, Henry House, Halifax, Nova Scotia, 2005.; Heritage Division, NS Dept. of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, 2005
Side and Front Elevation
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Other Name(s)


Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1834/01/01 to 1834/12/31

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2005/08/10

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

Henry House is a landmark building in Halifax, Nova Scotia. It is a two-and-a-half storey ironstone building in the Halifax House style located on Barrington Street, between Harvey and South Streets. The heritage designation applies to the building and the surrounding land it occupies.

Heritage Value

Henry House is valued for its association with its early prominent occupant. The house was built for John Metzler, a prominent land and real estate developer, in 1834 and it remained in his possession until 1887. This house is named for its first tenant, politician William Alexander Henry, who lived here for ten years. In the mid 1860s Henry was closely involved in the Confederation negotiations and is now considered a ‘Father of Confederation.’ In 1870, Henry was elected Mayor of Halifax and in 1875 was appointed to the Supreme Court of Canada. Today the house is a well known pub and restaurant.

Architecturally, Henry House is valued as an excellent example of the Halifax House style. This style generally encompasses a deep design with three bays and a side hall plan, which is evident in Henry House. The overall impression is one of solidity and stability which suited the original occupants who were the principle merchants and professionals in the province at the time. Built of ironstone masonry, it has Scottish influences as is common in Halifax Houses. The entrance has a storm porch added in the 1870s. It is a landmark on Barrington Street as most of the buildings that would date from its 1830s construction have since been razed.

Source: HRM Heritage Property File: 1222 Barrington Street, Henry House, found at HRM Planning and Development Services, Heritage Property Program, 6960 Mumford Road, Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Character-Defining Elements

The character-defining elements of Henry House relate to its Halifax House style and include:

- a two-and-a-half storeys;
- ironstone masonry;
- front façade of smooth dressed stone while the other exterior walls are rough surfaced random and coursed rubble walls;
- symmetrical three six-over-six windows on the second floor;
- two six-over-six windows;
- asymmetrical front entrance on the north end of the front façade;
- entrance storm porch;
- delicate window trim;
- drip course above the basement windows;
- corner quoins;
- gable roof.



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
Eating or Drinking Establishment


Single Dwelling

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

HRM Planning and Development Services, 6960 Mumford Road, Halifax, NS B3L 4P1

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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