Description of Historic Place
275 Kent Street is a two storey, wood framed former private residence with Classical Revival style influences. These features include its symmetrical facade, paired stacked square bays, corner pilasters, and palladian window. For most of its history, the building was a rental property; it now houses offices. It is located among a number of former homes from the early to mid 19th Century and stands directly across the street from Holland College. The designation encompasses the building's exterior and parcel; it does not include the building's interior.
The heritage value of 275 Kent Street lies in its Classical Revival influenced architectural details; its association with various Charlottetown residents; and its role in supporting the streetscape.
Local carpenter, Jabez Barnard owned the lot on which 275 Kent Street is situated. In the early 1840s, Barnard divided his lot equally between his sons, Jabez junior and Silas. Like their father, each son was a carpenter and they soon built a home on their portion from the same pattern, and put them up for sale. The home on the western lot, the current 275 Kent Street, was partly finished in 1846, when it was sold to commission merchant, Albert H. Yates. He kept the property only four years before selling it to merchants from Boston, Massachusetts. Throughout the years, it was rented to number of people including William MacIntosh, a captain in the Royal Navy.
In 1860, the house was sold to lawyer, politician and officeholder, Frederick de St Croix Brecken who also rented the property. Local directories reveal that H.R. Lordly, superintendent of the Charlottetown Light and Power Company, was a resident in 1900. Later in 1914, until at least 1928, Charles Leigh, a commission merchant, lived at 275 Kent Street however in 1937, Colonel U.G. Dawson, Manager of Charlottetown Fur Sales is listed as residing there. By the 1970s, Holland College owned the home and like those before, rented it. It now houses office space.
275 Kent Street appears to have been influenced by the Classical Revival style of architecture. The Classical Revival style was the result of further study of Greek original forms. Pattern books, such as those by architect and writer, Asher Benjamin, made the architectural vocabulary available to all builders. The style influenced Canadian architecture the most of any of the architectural styles and is often found in public buildings, but was also used in private dwellings in a more subdued fashion. Features of the style include symmetrical massing, heavy trim, a gable end that often faces the street and Palladian windows. Together, the gable end, stacked gable roofed bay windows and corner pilasters combine to form a Greek temple effect. 275 Kent Street helps support the Kent Street streetscape.
Sources: Heritage Office, City of Charlottetown Planning Department, PO Box 98, Charlottetown, PE C1A 7K2
The following Classical Revival character-defining elements contribute to the heritage value of 275 Kent Street:
- The overall symmetrical massing of the building
- The wood shingle cladding
- The heavy mouldings painted in a contrasting colour, particularly the door and window surrounds, the corner pilasters, the pedimented gables of the facade and the cornices
- The cross gable roof with a gable end facing the street
- The size and placement of the windows, particularly the Palladian window in the centre of the front gable, the stacked square bay windows with pedimented gable roofs atop and the sash windows
- The size and centre placement of the two doors located on the facade, one of which leads onto a balcony on the second floor and the other main door which features a transom light above
- The small balcony above the main door
- The size and placement of the brick chimney
Other character-defining elements of 275 Kent Street include:
- The location of the building on Kent Street and its physical and visual relationship to its streetscape