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Annie Macpherson Home

51, Avon Street, City of Stratford, Ontario, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1987/11/09

Of note are the large, detailed bay windows.; Martha Fallis, 2008.
Annie Macpherson Home
Featured is the frontispiece with detailed covered main entrance.; Martha Fallis, 2008.
Annie Macpherson Home
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Other Name(s)

Annie Macpherson Home
51 Avon Street

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2010/03/24

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Annie Macpherson Home is a two storey, buff brick residence constructed in circa 1870. It is located at 51 Avon Street, on the south side of Avon Street, east of John Street North, in the City of Stratford.

The property was designated, by the City of Stratford in 1987, for its heritage value, under Part IV of the Ontario Heritage Act (By-law 209-87).

Heritage Value

The Annie Macpherson Home is associated with Miss Annie Macpherson who founded the Match Box Makers Mission for destitute children in London, England in 1866. Miss Macpherson found many orphaned children in the east end of London whom she arranged to send to Canada. This was one of several such schemes intended to improve the lives of impoverished British children by sending them to work in Canada, Australia and elsewhere in the Commonwealth. They were generally referred to as “home children.” In 1871, a home was established in Galt for these children. The Galt home was closed in 1883, when the operation was transferred to 51 Avon Street, in Stratford. Miss Macpherson attended the official opening of the house in Stratford on October 18, 1883 and gave a short history of the movement. Miss Macpherson interested her nephew W.H. Merry in the program and he became the superintendent in Stratford.

Boys and girls who came to the Stratford home obtained work in local industries, on farms and in homes as domestics. Over 8,100 boys and girls lived there between 1883 and 1919.

Constructed in circa 1870, the Annie Macpherson Home is a good example of the Italianate style of architecture with a Second Empire style mansard roof. Typical of the Italianate style is the detailed frontispiece and the basic rectangular plan of the residence. The residence has two large detailed bay windows on the first floor and three round-arched dormers on the roof.

Sources: City of Stratford By-law 209-87

Character-Defining Elements

Character defining elements that contribute to the heritage value of the Annie Macpherson Home include the:
- two storey, buff brick exterior
- mansard roof
- brick chimney
- basic rectangular plan
- projecting frontispiece
- arched transom and sidelights of the main entrance
- two bay windows
- three round-arched dormers




Recognition Authority

Local Governments (ON)

Recognition Statute

Ontario Heritage Act

Recognition Type

Municipal Heritage Designation (Part IV)

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Building Social and Community Life
Education and Social Well-Being

Function - Category and Type


Single Dwelling


Group Residence

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

City of Stratford Office of the City Clerk Administrator City Hall 1 Wellington Street Stratford, ON N5A 2L3

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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