Joseph Cunard House
Maison Joseph Cunard
Links and documents
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
Built circa 1834, the O’Brien House, considered one of the oldest houses in Bathurst, is a two storey vernacular residence that sits on a wooded lot on St. Patrick Street.
O’Brien House is designated a Local Historic Place for its association with Joseph Cunard and the O’Brien family, as well as for its architecture.
Joseph Cunard (1799-1865) was considered a very influential New Brunswick merchant when he moved to Bathurst in the early 1830’s. A lumber dealer, shipbuilder and politician, Cunard built several homes on St. John and St. Patrick streets to house his employees. The house located at 324 St. Patrick Street has been identified as one of the many residences he built.
O’Brien House is recognized as well for its association with the O’Brien family. For a certain time, this residence was the home of Frank O’Brien, whose ancestors were shipbuilding contractors. One of his ancestors, John E. O’Brien (1827-1907), was considered one of the most important shipbuilders in Bathurst. Between 1830 and 1890, a period when the shipbuilding industry was flourishing, more than sixty vessels were built in the shipyards of John E. O'Brien.
O’Brien House is also considered one of the oldest residences in the city. It was built circa 1834, and despite its numerous transformations and additions, it has retained some of the rustic charm of homes built during the second half of the 19th century. Several architectural features point to the evolution and transformation of the house, such as the front porch and the visible expansions. The various types of dormer windows are testimony to the different periods of transformation through which the building has gone.
Source: Bathurst Heritage Trust Commission Inc., "O'Brien House" file
The character-defining elements that describe O’Brien House include:
- location on St. Patrick Street, in the city centre;
- wooded landscaping;
- two-storey construction;
- various types of dormer windows;
- returned cornices on the main roof;
- stone chimney;
- shingle cladding;
- numerous additions and expansions;
- outdoor access to the cellar;
- glassed-in side porch.
Local Governments (NB)
Local Historic Places Program
Municipal Register of Local Historic Places
Theme - Category and Type
- Developing Economies
- Trade and Commerce
- Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
- Architecture and Design
- Developing Economies
- Communications and Transportation
Function - Category and Type
- Commerce / Commercial Services
- Office or Office Building
- Single Dwelling
Architect / Designer
Location of Supporting Documentation
Bathurst Heritage Trust Commission Inc., 360 Douglas Avenue, Bathurst, NB
Cross-Reference to Collection