Home / Accueil

Ashford Cottage

1494 Freetown Road, Freetown, Prince Edward Island, C0B, Canada

Formally Recognized: 2008/05/15

Showing front elevation; Ashford Cottage, 2007
Showing front elevation
Showing east elevation; Ashford Cottage, 2007
Showing east elevation
Showing west elevation; Ashford Cottage, 2007
Showing west elevation

Other Name(s)

Ashford Cottage
The Scales' House

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2008/07/17

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

Ashford Cottage is a well preserved house built in the Queen Anne Revival style. Its architectural features include a corner tower, verandah, bay windows, and protruding beltcourses. It is located on landscaped grounds fronting the highway in the community of Freetown.

Heritage Value

Ashford Cottage is valued for its association with prominient members of the community of Freetown; for its Queen Anne Revival architectural elements; and for its contribution to the streetscape of the area.

The house was constructed around the year 1890 for local merchant, Albert Craig, for the sum of $1400. It was one of several houses in the Freetown area built by carpenter, John T. White, who was also a resident of the community. White also designed the St. James Roman Catholic Church and parochial house in Summerfield, PEI. Craig later sold the property to Charles and Mary (Bearisto) Taylor. Other owners included J. Stafford Walker and Davis Baker. In 1928, it was purchased by Austin A. Scales.

Austin A. Scales (1886-1989) was a prominient Island farmer, fox rancher, businessman and produce dealer. Scales had grown up on a farm in St. Eleanor's before attending the Nova Scotia Agricultural College in 1910 and the University of Guelph in 1918. His property in Freetown was part of over 400 acres of land he had in production in the community. He grew potatoes, generated electricity from a small plant he established along the Dunk River, and extended his business interests to capitalize on the agricultural potential of his land. In 1943, he established the PEI potato dehydration plant which packed tins of chipped and dryed potatoes for allied troops during World War II. In 1946, he restarted the Island Fertilizers Company. He would go on to become a director of the Bank of Canada and was a member of both the Atlantic Agricultural Hall of Fame and the Prince Edward Island Business Hall of Fame. Scales would reside in the house until 1957. In 1972, he received an honorary doctorate from the University of Prince Edward Island.

In recent years, the house has been named "Ashford Cottage" and has undergone extensive renovations including reshingling, replacing the roof, as well as the millwork of the verandah. The Queen Anne Revival style of the home has been maintained. This was a popular building style in the Maritimes from 1880-1915. It usually features a corner tower with an attached verandah and pedimented gables on either side of the house. This home also features bay windows and protruding beltcourses which delineate the storeys of the house.

The property remains a well preserved example of its type and contributes greatly to the community of Freetown.

Source: Culture and Heritage Division, PEI Department of Community and Cultural Affairs, Charlottetown, PE C1A 7N8
File #: 4320-20/A5

Character-Defining Elements

The following character-defining elements illustrate the Queen Anne Revival heritage value:

- The overall asymetrical massing of the building
- The building's wood framed construction with its wood shingle cladding
- The tower with stacked bay windows topped by a conical roof
- The style and placement of the original windows, particularly the bay windows, the rectangular and round arch windows
- The verandah with its turned posts and balustrade
- The gable asphalt shingle roof
- The decorative protruding beltcourses defining the storeys of the house
- The steeply pitched roof punctuated by distinctive dormer windows
- Gingerbread components on the house and verandah
- The brick foundation

Other character-defining elements of Ashford Cottage include:
- The location of the house in the community of Freetown



Prince Edward Island

Recognition Authority

Province of Prince Edward Island

Recognition Statute

Heritage Places Protection Act

Recognition Type

Designated Historic Place

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Architecture and Design

Function - Category and Type



Single Dwelling

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Source: Culture and Heritage Division, PEI Department of Community and Cultural Affairs, Charlottetown, PE C1A 7N8 File #: 4320-20/A5

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




Related Places



Advanced SearchAdvanced Search
Nearby Places