Description of Historic Place
The Armstrong Farm Site consists of a large brick-clad dwelling and wood barn completed
in ca. 1905, and set in a tree-sheltered yard near Rossburn. The municipal designation applies to the
two buildings and the grounds they occupy.
The Armstrong Farm Site is a good Manitoba example of the transfer of architectural
traditions of nineteenth-century southern Ontario to the newly opened West. The site, which features
a four-square dwelling attractively finished in brick, and a large Southern Ontario-style barn, was established
by pioneer James Armstrong, who began working the property in the late 1880s. The sprawling Rossburn-area
site, with its substantial dwelling set in a mature shelter belt away from the barn and other outbuildings,
was one of three farms developed in the immediate neighbourhood by James and his brothers Walter and
William, all from Ontario.
Source: Rural Municipality of Rossburn By-law No. 12-05, August 8, 2005
Key elements that define the site character of the Armstrong Farm Site include:
the site's location alongside a grid road in the Rossburn area
- the placement of the buildings
within a farmyard sheltered by mature trees, with the house set closest to the road and the barn to the
Key elements that define the four-square dwelling's well-appointed exterior character
- the block-like massing enhanced by a two-storey polygonal bay on the south face
- the large
truncated hip roof broken by gable dormers on the east and west sides and by a hipped roof over the bay
the decorative brick veneer featuring light-coloured accents contrasting with the prevailing red-brown
face brick, including prominent quoin-like detailing at corners and around windows and doors, belt courses,
fanciful flat arches and keystones, etc.
- the abundant fenestration throughout, composed mostly of tall
rectangular windows in wood surrounds
- finishes and details such as the dormers' fish-scale shingles
and intricately cut bargeboards, etc.
Key elements that define the dwelling's interior heritage
- the centre-hall plan incorporating a large farm kitchen and spacious, connected
living and dining rooms on the main floor and private rooms above
- the well-preserved woodwork, including
the main staircase and by details such as the window trim, several doors with applied scrolled trim,
- the narrow fir flooring on the second floor, with portions retaining a faux oak finish
that define the heritage character of the Southern Ontario-style barn include:
- the elongated two-storey
rectangular form under a massive gable roof, with vertical board loft walls and horizontal siding around
- the interior construction used in the loft, of heavy timbers formed into a large open framework
(each unit of the frame called a bent)
- the functional details, including the plank stable and loft
doors, the small square four-pane fixed stable windows on all sides, etc.