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5036 - 51 Street, Lacombe, Alberta, T4L, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1977/06/28

Looking down the sidewalk, the Roland Michener House is the third building, near the powerpole (circa 1910)
; Glenbow Archives, ND-2-57
Streetscape in Lacombe
Roland Michener House Provincial Historic Resource (April 1999); Alberta Culture and Community Spirit, Historic Resources Management Branch, 1999
View looking northwest
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Other Name(s)

Michener Residence
Michener Home

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2006/03/20

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Roland Michener House is a late nineteenth century, one and one-half storey building located on a single lot in a residential area of Lacombe, immediately adjacent to the town's business core. It features wood siding, a front-gabled shingle roof with rear cross-gable, and raised front porch that wraps around two sides of the home and is sheltered by a shingled roof supported by columns.

Heritage Value

The heritage value of the Roland Michener House lies in its association with Roland Michener, the Governor-General of Canada from 1967 until 1974.

In 1899, Reverend Edward Michener accepted a posting as a Methodist minister for the Lacombe circuit. He took up residence in the town's modest parsonage, located just north of the Methodist Church. On April 19, 1900 Daniel Roland Michener was born in this simple frame house that now bears his name. His family resided here for six weeks after his birth before moving to Red Deer. The home has been largely restored to its turn-of-the-century appearance.

Roland Michener gained renown as an accomplished lawyer, politician, and statesman in Canada. He received his undergraduate degree at the University of Alberta before pursuing graduate studies at Oxford on a Rhodes Scholarship. Upon returning to Canada, he worked for many years as a lawyer in Toronto before launching his political career. He was first elected to political office in 1945 when he won a seat in the Legislative Assembly of Ontario. Eight years later he was voted into the Canadian Parliament representing St. Paul's, Toronto. From 1957 until 1962, Michener served as Speaker of the House of Commons and was acclaimed as one of the best Speakers since Confederation. He also held posts as the High Commissioner to India and the first Canadian Ambassador to Nepal.

Michener is best known for his work as Canada's Governor-General, a position he held from 1967 until 1974. During his tenure, he directed several significant developments in the office of the Governor-General. Michener presided over the nation's centennial celebrations, presented the first Order of Canada honours, relaxed some of the formal protocols associated with the Governor-General, and instituted periodic meetings with provincial Lieutenant-Governors. He and his accomplished wife, Norah, were a progressive vice-regal couple who travelled extensively in Canada and abroad. A vigorous sportsman, "Canada's Jogging Governor-General" - as Michener was sometimes called - also championed physical activity for Canadians during his term through his advocacy on behalf of the Participaction Program. In honour of his service, he was presented the Royal Victorian Chain by Queen Elizabeth II in 1973, one of only two Canadians to have received the tribute. The Government of Alberta celebrated Michener's accomplishments by naming a mountain in his honour. Michener passed away in 1991.

Source: Alberta Culture and Community Spirit, Historic Resources Management Branch (File: Des. 302)

Character-Defining Elements

The character-defining elements of the Roland Michener House include such features as:
- original massing, form, and style;
- wood siding;
- shingled front-gabled roof;
- fenestration pattern and style, including wood frames and single-hung windows;
- panelled front door with transom;
- corbelled chimney stack;
- hardwood floors;
- interior mouldings and trims;
- balustraded staircase to second floor.




Recognition Authority

Province of Alberta

Recognition Statute

Historical Resources Act

Recognition Type

Provincial Historic Resource

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

1900/04/19 to 1900/05/30

Theme - Category and Type

Governing Canada
Politics and Political Processes

Function - Category and Type




Single Dwelling

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Alberta Culture and Community Spirit, Historic Resources Management Branch, Old St. Stephen's College, 8820 - 112 Street, Edmonton, AB T6G 2P8 (File: Des. 302)

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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