Description of Historic Place
The historic place is the one-and-one-half-storey, wood-frame Byron McDonald House, built in 1914 in the Arts and Crafts style, and located at 1471 Richter Street in Kelowna's Downtown neighbourhood.
The heritage value of the Byron McDonald House is found primarily in its association with a prominent community member who was active in the fruit-growing industry, auto sales, mining, and civic affairs. It is also valued as a good example of an Arts and Crafts-style residence constructed at the time of the outbreak of the First World War.
This house was built in 1914 for Byron McDonald (1881-1936). He and Jennie McDonald lived there from 1914 to about 1930, when they moved to the Cadder House (see 2124 Pandosy Street), bought from the estate of the late T.W. Stirling. Byron McDonald had long career in various industries of importance to Kelowna, as well as in civic affairs. After working in Ontario and Manitoba in the fruit and produce business, he came to Kelowna in 1907 to manage the Kelowna Farmers' Exchange. McDonald married Jennie Hardie in 1909. In 1913, he established an independent shipping house, B.C. Growers Ltd. He sold it in 1923, when the shipping firms were consolidated, and acted as sales manager for Associated Growers. The next year he established another independent shipper, B.C. Orchards Ltd., and bought the orchard of the Kelowna Land and Orchard Co. Ltd., which was thereafter operated as Keloka Orchards Ltd.
As well as his fruit-growing and shipping interests, McDonald was also one of the earliest auto dealers in Kelowna, starting about 1913. In 1919, he had the Giant Motor Trucks agency. In the 1920s McDonald's Garage was the General Motors dealer, and in 1925 he built a large block at the corner of Bernard Avenue and Pandosy Street to house his dealership. He was also involved in the celebrated mines at Beaverdell, particularly the Highland Lass mine. McDonald was a member of City Council from 1929 to 1932, and was a charter member of the Rotary Club.
The one-and-one-half-storey house has heritage value for its fine Arts and Crafts design, its well-maintained wood cladding, and its attractively landscaped property.
Hugo Loxterkamp, proprietor of Terminal Lunch (1477 Ellis Street), and his wife Lenore owned this house from 1945 to around 1950. By 1954, this house was owned by Sam Pearson, public works superintendent of the municipality of Glenmore, but he does not appear to have lived here. The renters in 1956 were Eric Turner Jr. (wife Agatha), apprentice at Wightman Plumbing, and Morley J. Tolton (wife Eunice E.), a sales representative for Hudson's Bay Company.
Source: City of Kelowna Planning Department
The character-defining elements of the Byron McDonald House include its:
- location on Richter Street in Kelowna's Downtown neighbourhood
- residential form, scale and massing, as expressed by its one-and-one-half-storey height and rectangular plan
- medium-pitched, gabled roof with gentle, bell-cast curved eaves and fascia board
- Arts and Crafts motif of vertical wood decoration in the gables
- double-gabled projecting dormer
- two decorative, corbelled, brick chimneys
- heavy wood structural knees at the dormers and gable ends
- narrow, horizontal, beveled wood siding, with wide boards around the perimeter and wide, vertical wood trim at the corners
- twelve-over-one, double-hung, wood-sash windows in the dormers
- twelve-pane, wood casement windows with wide wood trim
- wood shingles on the dormer walls
- open wood rafters at the dormer eaves
- ground-floor wood-sash windows with a central, fixed pane, flanked by three-over-one, double-hung windows and wide wood trim
- panelled front door
- corner lot with mature plantings throughout the site