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Collin Family Home

2396, Centrale Street, Saint-Hilaire, New Brunswick, E3V, Canada

Formally Recognized: 2009/02/18

Angled view taken from Centrale Street; Madawaska Planning Commission
Collin Family Home
Photo of the Canadian-style roof of the house; Madawaska Planning Commission
Collin Family Home
Angled view of the garage taken from Centrale Street; Madawaska Planning Commission
Collin Family Home

Other Name(s)


Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2009/06/01

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Collin Family Home is a two-storey Regency-style vernacular home built around 1865, with a summer kitchen, or annex, added in about 1892. It is located on Centrale Street in the Village of Saint-Hilaire.

Heritage Value

The Collin Family Home is designated a Local Historic Place for its architecture and history.

This residence was built around 1865, and is a colonial-era home in Saint-Hilaire that belonged to the Collin family and was built by Honoré Collin. The main house is an example of a vernacular interpretation of the Regency style. An important aspect of this house is its structure. The kitchen ceiling has rough timber beams and the living room has a coffered ceiling with squared-off plank flooring. On the second floor there are knee braces made of spruce roots used as supports for the roof and floor. They are joined to the floor with wooden and iron pegs so that they can be tightened as required. In the basement, immense cedars with the bark still on them still serve as the main support for the house, on which five-centimetre spruce planks were used for the floor on the first storey. It should be noted that the original façade of the house overlooked the St. John River, the only transportation route when the house was built around 1865.

This house was also the centre of bootlegging during Prohibition in the 1920's and 1930's. It has an unusually high basement, over three metres. At the time, liquor trucks came in to be unloaded without attracting attention. The cargoes were then hidden in the roof space of the front veranda, which was accessed through the low wall from a bedroom on the upper floor.

Source: Madawaska Planning Commission, Saint-Hilaire Register of Local Historic Places, File 1.3 "Maison de la famille Collin"

Character-Defining Elements

The character-defining elements of the Collin Family Home include:
- vernacular Regency-style architecture of the main house;
- summer kitchen, or annex, built around 1892;
- stone foundation built around the 1920's or 1930's;
- whole cedars supporting the house, under the five-centimetre spruce floorboards;
- rough beams on the kitchen ceiling with square nails;
- coffered ceiling in the living room and five-centimetre spruce floorboards;
- on the second floor, braces made of spruce roots used as a support for the roof, connected to the beams on the first floor with wooden and iron pegs;
- dimensions of the main house, 10.90 metres wide and 8.10 metres deep. The summer kitchen is 5.03 metres deep, which brings the house to a depth of 17.65 metres.



New Brunswick

Recognition Authority

Local Governments (NB)

Recognition Statute

Local Historic Places Program

Recognition Type

Municipal Register of Local Historic Places

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

1892/01/01 to 1892/01/01

Theme - Category and Type

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

Function - Category and Type



Single Dwelling

Architect / Designer



Honoré Collin

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Madawaska Planning Commission, Saint-Hilaire Register of Historic Places, File 1.3

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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