167-169 Sydney Street
Links and documents
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
167-169 Sydney Street is a Georgian and Gothic Revival inspired home built in 1868 by the Reverend Alexander Falconer, the father of Sir Robert Falconer, first President of the University of Toronto. It was also once the home of the Province’s first Acadian judge and lawyer, Stanislaus Blanchard. Instead of facing south onto the street, the home faces west onto a yard surrounded by a picket fence. The designation encompasses the building’s exterior and parcel; it does not include the building’s interior.
The heritage value of 167-169 Sydney Street lies in its association with the Reverend Alexander Falconer, father of Sir Robert Falconer, the first President of the University of Toronto, Judge Stanislaus Blanchard (1854-1916), its distinctive architecture, and its importance to the Sydney Street streetscape.
167-169 Sydney Street was built in 1868 by the Reverend Alexander Falconer, the minister of the Queen Square Presbyterian Church. His son, Sir Robert Falconer, would also become a clergyman, being educated at Edinburgh University. He would go on to be Principal of Halifax's Pine Hill Divinity College and in 1907, the first President of the newly federated University of Toronto. A Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada plaque can be found at the Robertson Library, University of Prince Edward Island. Falconer senior sold the home in 1871 to Orwell merchant, William Henry Finley for 780 pounds.
In 1889, Stanislaus Blanchard bought the home for 2500 dollars. The home would remain in the Blanchard family for some time afterward. Stanislaus Blanchard was a successful schoolteacher, lawyer and judge. After teaching for two years, he studied law in the office of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court and Premier, Hon. W.W. Sullivan. When he was admitted to the Bar in November 1882, Blanchard became the first Acadian lawyer on Prince Edward Island. Together with Edward Bayfield, he went on to establish the Charlottetown law firm of Bayfield and Blanchard. After a successful career as a lawyer, in 1905 he was appointed the Judge of the Kings County Court making him the first Acadian judge ever appointed on Prince Edward Island.
In addition to his professional accomplishments, many in Charlottetown celebrated his and his family’s musical abilities. Blanchard, who was choir director at St. Dunstan’s Basilica for over twenty-five years, had a large and very musical family that played and sang for various events in Charlottetown. Irene Rogers, in her book, Charlottetown: The Life In Its Buildings, mentions that a family friend used to attend musical gatherings on Sunday nights at the Blanchard’s home where a variety of music was sung including everything from “the simplest tunes to the glorious Gregorian chants of the Church”.
The Heritage Canada Foundation bought 167-169 Sydney Street in 1979 and renovated it to house three apartments. The entire electrical and plumbing systems were redone and the exterior was restored. The Georgian style elements of the house can be seen in its symmetrical window arrangement, gable roof, and equally spaced chimneys. The Gothic Revival elements of the house are evident in the two over two windows with label mouldings, the bracketed eaves, and the decorative verandah complete with fan bracketed columns. A beautiful home, 167-169 Sydney Street contributes to the Sydney Street streetscape.
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 167-169 Sydney Street:
- The overall massing of the home
- The style and symmetrical placement of the windows, including the large windows of the first floor, the slightly smaller windows of the second floor and the grouped windows of the shed dormer
- The placement and style of the door with its transom and side lights
- The decorative moldings around the windows and doors
- The clapboard siding
- The steep pitch of the gable roof with its decorative roof brackets
- The shed dormers of the roof (not original to the design of the house)
- The placement and style of the chimneys
Other character-defining elements of 167-169 Sydney Street include:
- The beautiful verandah with its decorative columns and brackets
- The location of the building on 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
- Multiple Dwelling
- 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