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1242 - 5 Avenue South, Lethbridge, Alberta, T1J, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1987/12/10

W.D.L. Hardie Residence Provincial Historic Resource (2007); Alberta Culture and Community Spirit, Historic Resources Management
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Listed on the Canadian Register: 2008/02/13

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The W.D.L. Hardie Residence is a two-and-a-half storey brick house from the pre-First World War period occupying portions of three city lots in the historic London Road neighbourhood of Lethbridge.

Heritage Value

The W.D.L. Hardie Residence's heritage value resides in its association with William Duncan Livingstone Hardie. Hardie played an important role in the development of Lethbridge as a mines superintendent for the Alberta Coal and Railway Company from 1894 to 1910 and Mayor of Lethbridge from 1912 to 1928. The W.D.L. Hardie Residence also possesses secondary heritage value as a good example of the kind of residential architecture constructed by upper-class Albertans in the pre-First World War period.

The first commercial coal development in Alberta, the Galt Mines and the Alberta Railway and Coal Company (financed by Sir Alexander Galt and his family) was critical to the development of Lethbridge at the turn of the twentieth century. Hardie served as colliery superintendent from 1894 to 1910, a period of revived fortunes and expansion for the Galt Mines. Elected Mayor of Lethbridge in 1913, Hardie ushered in a series of dramatic reforms, including establishing the first Commission government in Canada at the municipal level, imposing stricter financial management, and the extending municipal suffrage to women. He also had the longest tenure of any chief magistrate in Lethbridge's history, serving as mayor until 1928.

Built in 1911, the W.D.L. Hardie Residence was the family home throughout his tenure in office. The home is eclectic in its design and style, featuring a Foursquare style plan with some neo-classical and Arts and Crafts decorative details on the exterior and interior. It is a good example of pre-First World War residential architecture in Alberta

Source: Alberta Culture and Community Spirit, Historic Resources Management Branch (File: Des. 824)

Character-Defining Elements

The exterior character-defining elements of the W.D.L. Hardie Residence include:
- pyramidal roof with cedar shingles and wide, bracketed eaves;
- dormers featuring paired windows and sloping ("battered") walls and hipped roofs;
- fenestration pattern with segmental arch openings, surviving examples of wood frame windows with storm windows, leaded glass parlour windows featuring Arts and Crafts decorative treatments;
- wood verandah with entrance portico, Ionic columns, and enclosed sun room;
- oculus window above main entrance;
- wood front door with sidelights and leaded glass transom windows;
- exterior of locally manufactured brick.

Interior character-defining elements of the W.D.L. Hardie Residence include such features as:

- ground floor plan;
- interior woodwork, including stained wood baseboards and cornice mouldings, panel doors with historic hardware, door and window casings, colonnade at parlour entrance;
- original fireplaces in parlour, dining room and master bedroom featuring decorative stained wood mantels, glazed tile, and brass and cast iron inserts;
- original hardwood floors;
- main stairway balustrade;
- pocket doors separating parlour and dining room;
- built-in bedroom cupboards.




Recognition Authority

Province of Alberta

Recognition Statute

Historical Resources Act

Recognition Type

Provincial Historic Resource

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Developing Economies
Extraction and Production
Governing Canada
Politics and Political Processes

Function - Category and Type



Single Dwelling

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Alberta Culture and Community Spirit, Historic Resources Management Branch, Old St. Stephen's College, 8820 - 112 Street, Edmonton, AB T6G 2P8 (File: Des. 824)

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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