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CPR Telegraph Office

102-108 Prince William Street, Saint John, New Brunswick, E2L, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1982/03/18

This photograph shows the contextual view of the building, 2005; City of Saint John
CPR Telegraph Office
This photograph shows the five entrances in the storefront, 2005; City of Saint John
CPR Telegraph Office
This photograph shows the bracketed roof-line cornice, the dentils and the detailed frieze, 2005; City of Saint John
CPR Telegraph Office

Other Name(s)

CPR Telegraph Office
Lockhart's Art Rooms
Lockhart's Art Rooms
Hawker & Sons
Hawker & Sons
L. King Kelly Law Office
Cabinet d'avocats de L. King Kelley

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2009/05/05

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

Built circa 1878, the CPR Telegraph Office is a four-storey brick Italianate commercial building. It is located on Prince William Street within the boundaries of the Trinity Royal Heritage Conservation Area of the City of Saint John.

Heritage Value

The CPR Telegraph Office is designated a Local Historic Place for its architecture and for its association with its former occupants.

The CPR Telegraph Office is recognized as an expression of the significance of a Saint John commercial district. It is one of a collection of government, commercial and residential buildings that were built between 1877 and 1881 after two-thirds of the City of Saint John were destroyed by the Great Saint John Fire of 1877. This building serves as a reminder of that fire and the strong will of the residents of Saint John to rebuild the city. The brick architecture sent a message that the city would be more fire resistant in the future and the elements and design in this building as well as the rest of the collection demonstrate that the city was going to be rebuilt as well or better than the city that was lost. The CPR Telegraph Office is an example of commercial Italianate architecture from Saint John’s rebuilding period. The building is located within the Trinity Royal Heritage Conservation Area, officially recognized by the City of Saint John in 1982.

The CPR Telegraph Office is also recognized for its association with the Walker family. This building was built for James Walker shortly after the fire in 1877. In 1915 the building was obtained by his son, John Douglas Walker, and the building remained in the Walker family until 1954.

The CPR Telegraph Office is also recognized through its association with the occupants who have conducted business here. One of the original occupants of this building was William Lockhart. He was known as the leading auctioneer in Saint John for many years. He conducted his business here until 1893.

William Hawker occupied space in CPR Telegraph Office. In 1895, he moved into this building for want of more space and he began to manufacture the Hawker remedies. He later sold his line of remedies to the Canadian Drug Company. Hawker's three sons all became druggists. Hawker died in 1937.

One influential lawyer that conducted business here was James King Kelley. He moved into this building in 1899. In 1912, he was named King's Council. He was a member of the Saint John City Council and later secretary. He was one of the leading workers in having erected the Saint John County Hospital, and for child welfare, he was one of the first in the community to advocate the "Cottage Home", each cottage with its "mother", to give the children the benefit of a real home atmosphere, as he claimed this was a much better atmosphere than living in a large institutional building. Mr. Kelley was also an advocate of a prison farm.

The Canadian Pacific Telegraph Company used this building from 1899 until 1912. The McAlpine City Directory was published here from 1924 until 1939.

Source: Planning and Development Department - City of Saint John

Character-Defining Elements

The character defining elements that describe CPR Telegraph Office include:
- rectangular four-storey massing filling width of the lot;
- brick exterior walls;
- symetrical placement of rectangular windows;
- corbel bands at the roof-line;
- bracketed roof-line cornice;
- continuous sandstone lintels and projecting sills;
- decorative brick work under fourth-storey windows;
- sandstone pediment entablatures over second-storey windows.

The character defining elements that describe the storefront include:
- recessed wooden door with glass panel in centre bay;
- transom windows and sidelights;
- broad cornice;
- pilasters;
- wooden bulkheads.



New Brunswick

Recognition Authority

Local Governments (NB)

Recognition Statute

Municipal Heritage Preservation Act, s.5(1)

Recognition Type

Municipal Heritage Preservation Act

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

1877/01/01 to 1877/01/01

Theme - Category and Type

Developing Economies
Trade and Commerce
Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Architecture and Design
Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Developing Economies
Extraction and Production

Function - Category and Type


Commerce / Commercial Services
Shop or Wholesale Establishment


Commerce / Commercial Services
Office or Office Building

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Planning and Development Department - City of Saint John

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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