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Crowell-Smith House

3271 No. 3 Highway, Barrington Passage, Nova Scotia, B0W, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1989/10/02

Front elevation, Crowell-Smith House, Barrington Passage, 2004; Heritage Division, Nova Scotia Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, 2004
Front Elevation
Side elevation showing bay window, Crowell-Smith House, Barrington Passage, 2004; Heritage Division, Nova Scotia Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, 2004
Side Elevation
Rear rerspective showing ell, Crowell-Smith House, Barrington Passage, 2004.; Heritage Division, Nova Scotia Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, 2004
Rear Perspective

Other Name(s)


Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1815/01/01 to 1815/12/31

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2005/12/29

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Crowell-Smith House is a one-and-one-half storey, Maritime Vernacular style house with an entry porch and distinctive three-pane knee windows in the upper storey, below the eaves. The one-and-one-half storey barn next to the house has recently been restored and has both shingle and vertical clapboard cladding. Located in Barrington Passage, Nova Scotia, the house was built circa 1815, and the barn was reconstructed in 1885. The house, barn and surrounding property are all included in the provincial designation.

Heritage Value

The Crowell-Smith House is valued for its close and long association with the Crowell family, among the earliest settlers of Barrington Township. The family of Thomas Crowell Jr. was among the original New England Planter grantees that came from Cape Cod and Nantucket, Massachusetts in the eighteenth century. They chose to settle in Barrington Township for its proximity to the fishing banks off Nova Scotia. Built circa 1815 by Thomas Crowell’s son Ebenezer, a fisherman, it remained in the Crowell family throughout the nineteenth century. The ell addition at the rear of the house served as one of the earliest post offices for the district. Leah Crowell, wife of Ebenezer Crowell’s grandson Israel, was postmistress from 1868-1913. She also operated a small store on the edge of the property.

The Crowell-Smith House is also valued because it is a fine example of a Samuel Osborne Doane building; Doane was a well-known early nineteenth century carpenter. The Crowell-Smith House is a one-and-one-half storey, wood frame building of the Maritime Vernacular style. There is an ell addition to the rear and a bay window to the north side of the main section of the house. Doane’s trademark was knee windows in the upper storey under the eaves, as seen in the Crowell-Smith House. The three-pane windows are at a height that requires someone to kneel in order to see outside. They also provide light and ventilation to the upper storey rooms. Windows of this style are somewhat uncommon in Nova Scotia and most likely are a trend that was brought from New England with the Planter and Loyalist settlers.

Source: Notice of Registration of Property as a Provincial Heritage Property, Provincial Property Heritage File no. 110.

Character-Defining Elements

Character-defining elements of the Crowell-Smith House relate to its Vernacular style and include:

- three-pane knee windows in the upper storey, under the eaves;
- gable roof;
- wooden cladding;
- entry porch with sidelights;
- return eaves and corner boards;
- double chimney in main section, one chimney in the ell;
- side bay window addition at north side of the house;
- large rectangular windows contain six-over-six panes of glass;
- one-and-one-half storey barn with wood shingles and vertical clapboard.



Nova Scotia

Recognition Authority

Province of Nova Scotia

Recognition Statute

Heritage Property Act

Recognition Type

Provincially Registered Property

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Architecture and Design
Peopling the Land

Function - Category and Type



Single Dwelling

Architect / Designer



Samuel Osborne Doane

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Provincial Registry found at Heritage Property Program, 1747 Summer Street, Halifax NS, B3H 3A6

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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