Description of Historic Place
61 Rochford Street is a wood framed, Second Empire style home set close to the street. The home was constructed by carpenter William H. Fraser who worked on a number of projects throughout Charlottetown including Charlottetown City Hall, the Kirk of St. James and a strikingly similar Second Empire style home on Grafton Street. The designation encompasses the building's exterior and parcel; it does not include the building's interior.
The heritage value of 61 Rochford Street lies in its association with various Charlottetown citizens; its beautiful Second Empire style influenced architecture; and its role in supporting the Rochford Street streetscape.
Carpenter, William H. Fraser, built 61 Rochford Street in 1879. The home was sold ten years later to Mary Ann Scott, the wife of the Rev. William Scott. Hector MacLeod held the deed in trust for Ms. Scott, as it was quite common at the time for men to hold property for married women. The home could only be sold with Ms. Scott's written permission or through her will. Interestingly, a similar home built by Fraser located on Grafton Street, had an arrangement much like that of Ms. Scott. The married woman owned the home through a trustee. 61 Rochford Street remained in the family until 1916. According to Prince Edward Island Telephone Directories, J.P. Nicholson lived at the address from 1922 until 1928 and later, in 1935, Miss Roberta Nicholson is listed as residing there.
61 Rochford Street is a fine example of Second Empire style architecture in the City. The style is readily identified through its Mansard roof, which was named after François Mansart (1598-1666), and popularized by his son, Jules Hardoin Mansart, an architect who worked for France's King Louis XIV around 1700. The Mansard roof is almost flat on the top section and has deeply sloping, often curved, lower sections that generally contain dormers. The Second Empire referred to in the style is that of Napoleon III (1852-1870). The style reached Canada through Britain and the United States and was used extensively throughout Charlottetown from approximately 1860 until 1880.
61 Rochford Street is a well preserved example of the Second Empire style in Charlottetown. A striking, well kept home; it helps support the Rochford Street streetscape.
Sources: Heritage Office, City of Charlottetown Planning Department, PO Box 98, Charlottetown, PE C1A 7K2
The following Second Empire influenced character-defining elements illustrate the heritage value of 61 Rochford Street:
- The asymmetrical massing of the home
- The Mansard roof
- The various sizes and placement of the windows, including the tall windows, the stacked bay windows, the decorative windows of the porch and the dormer windows
- The style and off centre placement of the door
- The flat roofed porch with its decorative cornice and columns
- The bay projection that runs the full height of the building
- The various decorative details in contrasting colours, including the belt course, mouldings, cornice and corner boards
- The small verandah of the south side of the home, with its turned posts and balustrade
Other character-defining elements include:
- The location of the home set close to the street on Rochford Street