Home / Accueil

3 Oakland Drive / Wright's Mills

3 Oakland Drive, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, C1C, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1999/07/01

Showing view of Wright's Creek from the west; City of Charlottetown, Natalie Munn, 2005
3 Oakland Drive
Showing north west view adjacent to Wright's Creek where mills once were; City of Charlottetown, Natalie Munn, 2005
3 Oakland Drive
Engraving of mill buildings and view of creek; Meacham's Illustrated Historical Atlas of PEI, 1880
Wright's Mills

Other Name(s)

3 Oakland Drive / Wright's Mills
Bird Island Creek

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2005/10/17

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Wright’s Mill site is a large parcel of land with Wright’s Creek running through it. It is located along one of the Island’s oldest roads, the St. Peters Road, in what used to be the community of East Royalty. The property is the site of the former Bird Island Creek complex, which was a small industrial area which included a mill and the Island’s first brewery. Later, the Wright’s Mill would be located on the creek, which was later renamed Wright’s Creek. All buildings associated with the Bird Island complex and the Wright’s Mill are now demolished but the site has been designated because of its association with the industrial operations that once took place there. The designation includes the site only; it does not include the building on the site.

Heritage Value

The heritage value of the Wright's Mill site lies in its association with the Bird Island Creek complex, the Wright's Mill operation and the property's value as a beautiful natural area along the St. Peter's Road.

Land agent and businessman, John Cambridge (1748-1831) and his wife, Mary Cambridge (d.1832) came to Prince Edward Island in 1784. They would go on to build successful businesses, which included a brewery, mills and a shipbuilding operation. Their son in law, Hon. George Wright (1779-1842) went into business with the Cambridge family in 1808 and was put in charge of the brewery at Bird Island Creek. The brewery was the first on Prince Edward Island. According to letters written by Mary Cambridge, Wright did not appear to have the business sense of the Cambridge family and the brewery was plagued with difficulties. Finally, in 1813, the Cambridge and Wright business partnership was formally dissolved and the complex was given to Wright and his wife, Phoebe (1780-1851).

Unfortunately, fire struck the buildings at Bird Island Creek on 12 November 1827. A fire had started in a drying kiln and destroyed the entire operation that by this time included a gristmill, barley mill, sawmill and distillery. The business was uninsured and Wright lost an estimated £1500. He would rebuild only some of his business. The land stayed in the Wright family for many years afterward and they ran a carding and gristmill from the property. A mill operated there until the 1940s when the owner, who was concerned over liability, demolished the buildings. Today, the creek that runs through the area is named Wright’s Creek in honour of the family that lived there for so many years.

Hon. George Wright was not only involved in business but was a farmer, a colonel in the Militia, and served in a number of important offices. Some of the offices he held included: Administrator of Prince Edward Island, Member of the Legislative Council, Surveyor General, Judge and High Sheriff. His nearby family home, Belmont, which was part of his large farm, remains a fine example of early Regency architecture.

The area at 3 Oakland Drive was originally within the boundaries of the Charlottetown Royalty and later the community of East Royalty, however it became part of the City of Charlottetown in 1995 when the surrounding communities amalgamated with the City. The site is well known for its beauty and at one time was a popular fishing place. The tree lined former millpond is still visible from the St. Peters Road. An important historic site; it calls to mind the Island’s industrial past.

Heritage Office, City of Charlottetown Planning Department, PO Box 98, Charlottetown, PE C1A 7K2

Character-Defining Elements

The following character-defining elements illustrate the heritage value of 3 Oakland Drive:

- Wright’s Creek running through the landscape
- The trees that line three sides of the creek
- The unobstructed view of the mill pond from the St. Peters Road
- The undeveloped landscape



Prince Edward Island

Recognition Authority

City of Charlottetown

Recognition Statute

City of Charlottetown Zoning and Development Bylaw

Recognition Type

Heritage Resource

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Developing Economies
Extraction and Production

Function - Category and Type


Nature Element


Food and Beverage Manufacturing Facility

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Heritage Office, City of Charlottetown Planning Department, PO Box 98, Charlottetown, PE C1A 7K2 #1215

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




Related Places



Advanced SearchAdvanced Search
Nearby Places