Links and documents
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
9-11 Sydney Street is a Georgian influenced home situated near the Charlottetown waterfront. Samuel May Williams (1774-1827), a local builder, built the home in 1805. It was home to the William Douse family for a time as well. The designation encompasses the building’s exterior and parcel; it does not include the building’s interior.
The heritage value of 9-11 Sydney Street lies in its Georgian influenced architecture, its association with local builder Samuel May Williams, its association with Member of the Legislative Assembly, shipbuilder and land agent, William Douse (1800-1864) and its importance to the Sydney Street streetscape.
According to a letter written by Thomas Dawson, a resident of Charlottetown in the 1800s, local builder Samuel May Williams built 9-11 Sydney Street in 1805. The home was probably a log home that had been enlarged first with a plank, and later a frame addition. During a renovation all the aforementioned construction materials were found within the home’s walls. The renovation also revealed two cannon balls embedded in the home’s sandstone foundation, likely from its former neighbour, George’s Battery. Williams mortgaged the property in 1815 and the home is specifically mentioned in this document. In 1823, the home was also offered for sale. Samuel May Williams was a multi-talented man. He worked as a builder, an engraver and a merchant. The Georgian house is one of the earliest in the City and is notable for its symmetrical and balanced facade, prominent corner boards, and wooden construction.
Williams built Charlottetown’s first Market House in 1813, which was described as a “framed and picketed” building. Williams passed away in 1827, however his wife, Maria (Allen) Williams, continued to live in the home until she sold it to William Douse in 1835.
William Douse was a prominent shipbuilder, land agent and Member of the Legislative Assembly. He came to Prince Edward Island from England in the early 1820s and soon became involved in farming, shipbuilding, brewing and auctioneering. In 1833, he was named land agent by the 6th Earl of Selkirk and given power of attorney of an estate of over 100 000 acres. Douse was also active politically. He was first elected to the Legislative Assembly for Queens County in 1834 and was successful in all but two elections until his retirement in 1862.
One of the oldest homes in Charlottetown, the Williams Douse House is an important part of the Sydney Street streetscape and the Charlottetown waterfront.
Sources: Heritage Office, City of Charlottetown Planning Department, PO Box 98, Charlottetown, PE C1A 7K2
The following Georgian influenced character-defining elements illustrate the heritage value of 9-11 Sydney Street:
- The overall massing of the home
- The placement and style of the windows, including the rectangular, multi-paned windows of the ground floor, the six over six windows and the arched window of the second floor, as well as the dormer windows
- The placement and style of the doors on either side of the porch
- The porch with its gable roof
- The contrasting white trim around the windows and doors, as well as the corner boards and belt course
- The rounded dormer
- The pitch of the gable roof
- The placement and style of the chimney
Other character-defining elements of 9-11 Sydney Street include:
- The location of the building near the water at the end of Sydney Street
Prince Edward Island
City of Charlottetown
City of Charlottetown Zoning and Development Bylaw
Theme - Category and Type
- Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
- Architecture and Design
Function - Category and Type
- Single Dwelling
Architect / Designer
Location of Supporting Documentation
Heritage Office, City of Charlottetown Planning Department, PO Box 98, Charlottetown, PE C1A 7K2
Cross-Reference to Collection