Description of Historic Place
290-292 Grafton Street is a one and one half storey wood framed Maritime Vernacular style home. It features a symmetrical facade with a central roof dormer. It is located among a group of homes built in the 1860s and 1870s and stands 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 290-292 Grafton Street lies in its association with its various former residents; its Maritime Vernacular architectural style; and its role in supporting the streetscape.
Local carpenter, Thomas Seller, built the home at 290-292 Grafton Street in 1865. The Seller family remained in the home for many years. According to McAlpine's Prince Edward Island Directory, Miss Elizabeth Seller lived in the 290 Grafton Street side of the building while dressmaker, Miss Nettie Seller, resided at 292 Grafton Street. By 1937, 290 Grafton Street was vacant and postal worker, George W.H. Beers, inhabited 292 Grafton Street.
The building is an example of the Maritime Vernacular Cottage style, which was common in mid-19th Century Charlottetown. A distinctive Maritime style, its features include a rectangular plan, a central doorway and a large centrally placed dormer. These homes were usually unadorned, unless influenced by a later style, in which case some exterior decoration is sometimes present.
A well maintained home among a number of heritage homes built around the same time, 290-292 Grafton Street helps support the Grafton Street streetscape.
Sources: Heritage Office, City of Charlottetown Planning Department, PO Box 98, Charlottetown, PE C1A 7K2
The following Maritime Vernacular cottage character-defining elements contribute to the heritage value of 290-292 Grafton Street:
- The symmetrical facade of the building
- The one and one half storeys
- The mouldings painted in a contrasting colour, particularly the door and window surrounds, the simple cornices and the corner boards
- The gable roof with central roof dormer
- The placement of the windows, particularly the two large windows, with one on either side of the centrally placed door
- The size and centre placement of the door leading into the gable roofed porch and the door of the east side of the house
- The size, shape and centre placement of the porch with its gable roof, decorative pediment, transom and sidelights, and large windows on either side
- The size and placement of the separated brick chimneys
Other character-defining elements of 290-292 Grafton Street include:
- The location of the building on Grafton Street and its physical and visual relationship to its streetscape