Description of Historic Place
Prat House is a two-and-one-half-storey, wood structure located on Main Street, Wolfville, Nova Scotia. Situated very close to the street, along a sharp bend in the road, the house neighbours the cemetery and grounds of St. John’s Anglican Church. Only the building is included in the designation.
Prat House is valued for its architectural features and for its association with its original owner and builder, George Ann Prat.
Originally from Somerset, England, Prat arrived in Nova Scotia as a child with his widowed mother and four brothers. The family settled in Wolfville in 1878.
Prat had many creative talents. He was a skilful and prominent carpenter, farmer, builder and architect. He built a number of homes in Wolfville, including his own, and in 1887, he remodelled St. John’s Anglican Church. He also designed and crafted school and church furniture in his wood shop. Creative flair and an appreciation for the arts were attributes that extended to several other members of his family; an exhibit in 1986-7 at Nova Scotia’s Public Archives displayed works by George’s talented nieces, Annie, Minnie and May Prat, known as the ‘Prat Sisters,’ who were internationally-acclaimed painters and bookbinders in the late 1890s.
Beyond his passion for woodworking and design, Prat was prominent in community life and served as a member of the town council for several years. He was also a passionate supporter of his church and served as a vestry clerk at St. John’s for over 50 years.
Architecturally, Prat House displays Gothic Revival elements such as a gabled, steep-pitched roof and windows with architraves and hood mouldings. The home has undergone several renovations over the years, such as the addition of a front entrance, east wall, west porch and an addition to the north side of the building.
- Town of Wolfville Heritage Property Program files, Prat House file.
Character-defining elements of Prat House include:
- asymmetrical appearance;
- ell-shaped structure;
- gabled, steep-pitched roof;
- clapboard siding with corner boards;
- windows with architraves and hood mouldings;
- Classical-style cornices;
- gabled porch;
- projecting frontispiece.