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RIVERVIEW C.A. MAGRATH HOUSE

109 - 7 Avenue South, Lethbridge, Alberta, T1J, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1982/01/05

"Riverview" C.A. Magrath House Provincial Historic Resource, Lethbridge (April 2004); Alberta Community Development, Heritage Resource Management Branch, 2004
Three quarter view, looking south
"Riverview" C.A. Magrath House Provincial Historic Resource, Lethbridge (circa 1892); Sir Alexander Galt Museum and Archives, 19841005002
Three quarter view, looking west
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Other Name(s)

Magrath House
Riverview
RIVERVIEW C.A. MAGRATH HOUSE
C. A. Magrath House
Magrath Residence
C. A. Magrath Residence
C. A. Magrath 'Riverside' Residence

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1892/01/01

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2006/09/06

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

C.A. Magrath's 'Riverview' is a two and one-half storey, late Victorian red brick house that sits on one city lot on 7th Avenue South in Lethbridge, overlooking the Oldman River valley in the established London Road neighbourhood.

Heritage Value

The heritage value of the 'Riverview' lies in its association with its original owner, Charles Alexander Magrath, who played an important role in the early history of Lethbridge and the settlement of southern Alberta.

Magrath arrived in Lethbridge from Ontario in 1885 to work as a surveyor and land agent for the Northwest Coal and Navigation Company in the new community. Magrath quickly became established among the elite of the town as a prominent figure in local politics, as the first president of the Board of Trade in 1889 and first mayor of Lethbridge when the town was incorporated in 1891. In addition to local politics, Magrath played a major role in the effort to recruit settlers to southern Alberta. He negotiated with the Mormon community in Utah, who later agreed to construct irrigation canals in exchange for cash and land. These irrigation projects helped to entice settlement by creating potential farmland out of the prairie grassland. Built in 1892, 'Riverview' was his primary residence for four years, before being sold to Lethbridge's first lawyer, A.F. Coneybeare.

'Riverview' is a slightly unusual example of late Victorian domestic architecture. While the high verticality of the house is typical of similar residences of the periods, such eccentric features as its massing, hipped roof and small projecting wings capped by gables that abut the building suggest that Magrath himself may have been involved in its design.

Source: Alberta Community Development, Heritage Resource Management Branch (File: Des. 1019)

Character-Defining Elements

Character-defining elements of 'Riverview' include such features as:
- form, mass, and scale of the building;
- small projecting towers with decorative shingled and bellcast treatment of the gables, characteristic of the Victorian period;
- two original corbelled brick chimneys;
- remaining original millwork, crown moulding, and ornate radiators in some of the interior spaces;
- use of locally manufactured bricks, including soft orange bricks employed throughout the building envelope;
- voussoirs over the original window openings on the main and second storeys;
- soffit bracket detail on the south side;
- landmark status in Lethbridge's historic London Road district;
- unobstructed views of the house from the Oldman River valley.


Recognition

Jurisdiction

Alberta

Recognition Authority

Province of Alberta

Recognition Statute

Historical Resources Act

Recognition Type

Provincial Historic Resource

Recognition Date

1982/01/05

Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

n/a

Theme - Category and Type

Peopling the Land
Settlement
Governing Canada
Politics and Political Processes

Function - Category and Type

Current

Historic

Residence
Single Dwelling

Architect / Designer

n/a

Builder

n/a

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Alberta Community Development, Heritage Resource Management Branch, Old St. Stephen's College, 8820 - 112 Street, Edmonton, AB T6G 2P8 (File: Des. 1019)

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier

4665-0188

Status

Published

Related Places

n/a

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