Description of Historic Place
Kennedy House is located on the corner of Esplanade and York Streets in Sydney, Nova Scotia. Facing the Sydney Harbour, this one-and-a-half storey wood-frame house was built around 1786 and is one of the oldest houses in Sydney. The building and property are included in the provincial designation.
As a surviving eighteenth-century structure, Kennedy House is valued for its association with the founding and early development of Sydney.
The Kennedy House was built around 1786, a year after the founding of the community. As with many early houses in the town, it seemed to have been largely a rental property, serving a transient community. In 1795, the building was owned by John Meloney, one of Sydney's first residents, but it was occupied by a sailor named Tutty and his family. Between 1824 and 1853, the building was owned by the Reverend Charles Inglis, rector of Saint George's Anglican Church. It is not certain, however, if Inglis actually lived in the house or used it as a rental property, as he owned several other properties in the town. In 1856, a mariner named Michael Kennedy purchased the property, and rented it to F.T. Carman. Carman opened Sydney's first drugstore in this building.
The Kennedy House is a one-and-a-half storey, wood-frame structure with a simple gable roof. The rear elevation best demonstrates the original eighteenth-century design. There is a central doorway, with two windows on either side of it, and a narrow, gable dormer over the entrance. A large chimney, slightly inset, and rebuilt, is also evident from this elevation.
Kennedy House is one of a very few examples of documented eighteenth-century buildings remaining in Sydney. The house sits in a prominent location, adjacent to St. Patrick's Museum and across the street from Sydney Harbour and Governor DesBarres' original landing site.
Source: Provincial Heritage Program property files, no. 217, 1747 Summer Street, Halifax, NS.
Character-defining elements of Kennedy House include:
- one-and-a-half storey wood construction;
- gable roof;
- a central doorway in the rear elevation, with two windows on either side and a narrow, gable dormer over the rear entrance;
- slightly inset large chimney;
- two gable dormers on the front elevation.