Heritage Haldimand

About Heritage Haldimand

Our inheritance of architecture, cultural landscapes, and material culture is an irreplaceable asset and resource. In Ontario, the task of conserving our inheritance of historically and architecturally significant properties is primarily a municipal matter.

The Ontario Heritage Act provides a framework within which municipalities can act to ensure the conservation of properties of historical and/or architectural significance. It also encourages citizen participation in heritage conservation locally. Under section 28 of the Act, the Council of a Municipality is authorized to establish, by bylaw, a Municipal Heritage Committee, a local advisory committee made up of five or more people. The function of the committee is to advise Council on matters pertaining to parts IV and V of the Ontario Heritage Act and assist Council in carrying out its heritage conservation program.

The qualifications of Municipal Heritage Committee members vary; a successful committee will have within their membership a breadth of skills in architectural and historical research, education and promotion, rehabilitation and restoration techniques and business development. Representation from neighbourhood groups and individuals familiar with the community’s heritage, including representatives from Council or its Staff, proves to be a valuable tool.

Haldimand Heritage meets once a month for a few hours to discuss community heritage and designation issues. Would you be interested in giving a few hours per month to preserve our local heritage structures?

For more information or questions call (905) 318-5932 or email us at heritage@haldimandcounty.on.ca

What Does a Municipal Heritage Committee Do?

  • Advises Council on matters pertaining to Parts IV and V of the Ontario Heritage Act
  • Examines all the properties and areas that may deserve protection now or in the future
  • Facilitates the community’s interest and involvement in heritage conservation through a recognized forum
  • Promotes heritage conservation within the community
  • Advise property owners of appropriate conservation and maintenance practices
  • Determines the value of heritage resources for protection
  • Provides council with reliable advice to assist them in making decisions on complex issues
  • Educates the community to encourage a conservation ethic and a climate of responsible stewardship of the community’s built heritage.

Heritage Haldimand educates the community to encourage a conservation ethic and a climate of responsible stewardship of the community’s heritage building and landscape assets.

Contact committee liaison at 905-318-5932 ext. 6516

Heritage Haldimand Designated Properties

Edinburgh Square Heritage & Cultural Centre

80 Caithness Street East, Caledonia, ON

The former Caledonia Town Hall, built in 1857, is recommended for designation for architectural and historical reasons.  The building is of Victorian design and has been an integral part of the community – originally serving as a public meeting hall, the public lock-up, with the lower area used for a farmers’ market.  It later became the Town Municipal Offices until the inception of Regional Government in April of 1974.

Caledonia Town Hall

4104 Highway 3,  Cayuga, ON

This c. 1895 two-storey limestone house is a representative example of a large, late 19th century farmhouse in an Ontario vernacular interpretation of the bracketed or Italianate style.

In addition, a large portion of Donald Campbell’s c.1847 stone cottage, which is illustrated on the border of Tremaine’s 1863 Map of Haldimand County, is incorporated into the walls of the house as it now stands. Donald Campbell, one of the earliest settlers of North Cayuga Township, operated a steam sawmill on the premises c.1861, thus making a major contribution to the early development of the area.

Campbell Pine House

601 Haldimand Rd. 12, Fisherville, ON

The Charles Reicheld House is one of the finest and best-preserved bracketed style farmhouses in Haldimand County. It is an outstanding example of the rich and finely crafted architectural detail created by traditional German carpenters. Therefore, it should be preserved for the enjoyment and inspiration of future generations.

Charles Reicheld House

136 Rainham Road, Nanticoke, ON

The first Anglican services were held in John Banfield’s tannery.  In 1848 and 1860 frame churches were built, the latter having a square tower and was consecrated by Bishop Strachan.  In 1886, Mr. Stroud of Lynn Valley built the new brick church.  In 1931 the Parish Hall was added.  The Church of England introduced the Gothic style pointed windows, spires, polychromatic bricks, and other denominations adopted it.  Christ Church today has two aisles, the baptismal font is typically located near the entry and the alter is raised and centrally located below the beautiful three part gothic window.  The memorial windows each depict a full figure in stained glass.

Christ Church

3355 River Road, Caledonia, ON

Built in the 1830’s by Nicholas Cook on land granted him by. Joseph Brant, it is a fine example of the two-storey Georgian style house, which was popular with the early settlers in Upper Canada.

Cook Peart House

27 Erie St. S., Selkirk, ON

James Cooper first purchased this land in 1847, but did not build this house until 1870.  In 1878, he sold it to George Hoover.  The present owners purchased the house in 1947.

Cooper Fess Residence

740 Haldimand Road 53, Selkirk, ON.

Built by William Holmes approximately 1860 on the farm originally established by Jakob Huber in the 1790’s. It is one of the few remaining examples of rural mansions of the period. It contains 16 rooms, including five bedrooms, a music room, and a widow’s walk.

Cottonwood Mansion

915 4th Line, Caledonia, ON

The house known as the Cranston Post Office was built in two parts.  The older, rear part, is a rare surviving example of an early settler’s three-room plank cottage.  It retains most of its original features including plain board-and-batten siding and plain sash windows and plank doors.  The newer, front part of the house was built in a Victorian gothic style with patterned brickwork, four gables, arched and shuttered windows, elaborate barge board, and ornate front bay window and verandah, both with bracketed cornices.  Both parts of the house are excellent examples of their respective styles and periods, and both are unusually well preserved.


The Cranston Post Office was also an essential link between the backwoods settlers of Oneida and the rest of the world.  This is where they received letters from the old country and gathered to discuss news from near and far.  They also came here to obtain the services of a blacksmith.  At least two of the postmasters were also blacksmiths and their smithy stood next to the post office.  All of the other public and commercial buildings that once stood in the hamlet of Cranston are now gone; the Post Office alone survives to remind us of this once thriving rural hamlet and the 19th century lives that revolved around it.

Cranston Post Office

3220 River Road, Cayuga, ON.

Built in 1853, it is probably the last remaining building of the early and active settlement of Mount Healy.  It was once the center of social activity of the area.  It is a fine example of a riverside hotel.

Dochstader Hotel

5 Mohawk Street East, Cayuga, ON

This house is a replica of a 17th century New England Garrison Style house.  It was meticulously constructed by Gerrond Somerville and Mary Duff using old building materials and architectural antiques.  The 1851 log house on the property originally stood at the fork on the Kohler Road in Cayuga.  It was originally owned by, the Toohey family.  George and Florence Lint, and their three daughters lived in it until 1949.  Clarence Bacher was bequeathed the Lint farm in 1955 and sold the log house to Mr. and Mrs. Duff in 1964.  The Duff’s had the log house dismantled and reconstructed at its present location.

Duff House

1610 Concession 13, Townsend, ON.

This lot was part of the holdings of the Canada Company, founded by Scottish novelist John Galt to relocate the poor of Britain and Europe after the Napoleonic War and growing industrialism.  John Edmondson, from Ireland, bought the land in 1867 (he had previously spent some time in Quebec).  Son Andrew farmed here after his father’s death.  In 1909 the property sold to Wm Jeffrey and remained in the family until 1946.  In 1974 the land became part of the Townsend Town Site, but it was not developed as such.

Edmondson Weaver House

39 Front St., York, ON.

Enniskillen Lodge

2511 North Shore Drive, Lowbanks, ON

The Furry Tavern is a large structure built in 1821 of sawn lumber before there were local saw mills in the immediate vicinity, at a time when others were assembling log homes personally hewn out of the bush during the earliest settlement of Moulton and Sherbrooke Townships.  It is representative of the homes of the financially secure citizens of colonial Pennsylvania, and strands as a testament to their architectural capabilities.  It still displays some decorative stenciling on the original walls as a sample of early beautification of the home.

Furry Tavern

4830 Highway 6, Caledonia, ON

Historical – A fine example of a large family farm home built circa 1889. Situated on one of the century farms in Oneida, it was at one time the home of 24 descendants of Mary Sinclair Gibson (including Sir John Gibson). It is a two-storey brick construction of semi-Gothic design with full height bay windows on the front and south sides.

Gibson-Alderson House

19 Cayuga Street North, Cayuga, ON

Although there is no exact record of when the building was constructed, from records of mortgages, we can limit the time frame from 1868 to 1880.  This building is an integrate part of the commercial section on the west side of Cayuga Street, which still mostly contains the nineteenth century small town architecture and is integral to the vista of Main Street, Cayuga.  It served as a grocery and liquor store; bookstore as well as publishing the Haldimand Advocate.  It was also the Union Bank, telephone central, Baird’s Hardware, Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit, and Avestal Credit Union.

Gibson-Bunn Building

699 2nd Line, Hagersville, ON.

The Gore Cemetery is an example of a rural 19th century cemetery design characterized by a idyllic and attractive landscape.

Aboriginal Lands in Oneida Township were surrendered to the Crown in 1832 to be used for a church, a school and a burial ground. This area, where the 1st Line joins the 2nd Line, is known as the “Gore” at Clanbrassil. The Gore Cemetery, Clanbrassil is one of Haldimand County’s earliest cemeteries and is historically associated with the Presbyterian Church of Canada in Oneida (ca. 1868) and the United Church.

Records show the sale of plots began March 26, 1860. The pioneer section is separated from the “new section” by a driveway; the new section was developed in 1994. This cemetery has many of the founding families of the area interred within its boundaries. Surnames noted on the monuments can be associated with the development of the Village of Indiana, for example: Cranston, McConachie, Nelles, Stark and Smith.

The first death documented on a tombstone is June 11, 1843 for Margaret Elder, age 17 months, daughter of Peter & Jane Elder and, while there are several markers indicating deaths before 1860, it is believed that these burials were initially made near family homes and bodies later exhumed for re-internment to the Gore Cemetery.

The Gore Cemetery contains the graves of many of Haldimand’s founding families and their descendants. It’s design value is derived from the collection of monuments dating from 1843 to present day, and range from modest grave markers to more elaborate monuments with intricate shapes and decorative carvings.

In 1929, The Gore Cemetery Commission was established by the plot holders to own and manage the cemetery.

In 1949, an iron gate and two stone pillars were erected. In 1992, a plaque was placed at the east driveway; the inscription reads “Gore Cemetery. Est. 1843. This cemetery honours the pioneers of Oneida and their descendants.”

The Gore Cemetery remains active and has approximately 800 interments (as of 2015). Grave markers are made of soft granite, marble and limestone and display carved motifs and epitaphs to the more modern design.

1956 Haldimand Road 17, Cayuga, ON

This small brick schoolhouse was built circa 1874. It is one of two remaining buildings of the Gypsum Mines hamlet, which was a thriving, busy community when gypsum was mined locally from 1842 to 1910.

Gypsum Mines School

95 Concession 4 Road, Fisherville, ON

This is one of the oldest homes in Haldimand.  The family of Daniel Hoover built it, in 1793.  According to the Haldimand Historical Atlas, “The first white inhabitants of Rainham were Jacob Hoover, with his sons Abraham, David, Benjamin and Daniel, who came from Pennsylvania in 1791, and…purchased from the Government about 2500 acres of land.”  The Atlas says they were “Swiss or of Swiss descent.”  It describes them as “a thrifty and industrious family [who] soon effected large clearings, and became wealthy, as they were the first who had any surplus produce to sell to the settlers who took up land a few years after their own farms began to produce.”  The family was Mennonites, and it is believed that because they were neutral during the War of 1812, both American and British soldiers took refuge in the Hoover House.  There is a family tradition that William Lyon Mackenzie stayed at the house while serving as Haldimand’s Member of the Legislative Assembly.  At the time of the Atlas (about 1877), the Hoovers are described as “a numerous and wealthy family, and…among the most respectable and substantial yeomen of Haldimand.”

The larger house, which was damaged beyond restoration by the 1994 fire, was added in the 1820’s.  It was a substantial two-storey house of frame and brick, with clapboard siding.  In 1868 it passed to the Effinger family, and was last lived in by Jesse Burford in the early 1990s.

The Hoover Log House is an artifact of the earliest white settlement in the area.  It is a genuine pioneer log house.  Its early date, and its connection with the Hoover family, qualifies it for a special place among the heritage landmarks of Haldimand County.

Hoover Log House

1615 Concession 13, Townsend, ON

Exterior Significance

The Jeffrey residence, built in the mid 1870’s, is a polychrome masonry structure with a duel façade.  The one-and-one half storey west portion has elements of the Gothic Revival Style of architecture; and the two-storey end portion exhibits features typical of the Italianate of Bracketed Style of architecture.

The west façade is three bays, a central doorway flanked by two windows.  These are large double-hung segmental arched windows (2/2).  A simply decorated verandah with square posts and delicate brackets run the width of this façade.  A gabled peak containing a round-headed window breaks the roofline above the door.

The façade of the east portion of the building is much more impressive and ornate.  The central doorway contains a four-panel door with sidelights and an etched blue glass transom.  The square porch is very ornate with square twinned post, elaborate panels and brackets and intricate fretwork.  Single round headed double-hung windows (1/1) are on either side of the doorway.  Three identical windows on the second floor correspond to the ground floor openings.  These windows all have brackets to accommodate shutters.  The wide eaves of the hipped roof have ornate wooden brackets.

Interior Significance

Dominating and highlighting the entrance hall is a spiral staircase with marbleized plaster on the circular stairway walls.  The large paneled newel post has circular glass insets.  The east parlor has an elaborately paneled by window reveal, and also an ornate ceiling medallion intricately carved with birds, fruit and foliage.

Jeffrey Residence

5915 Rainham Road, South Cayuga, ON

John Fry, a blacksmith and carpenter, was one of the founders of the Plain Folk settlement along the Rainham Road in South Cayuga Township. His house is one of the oldest still standing in South Cayuga. Its three parts (c. 1835, c. 1855, c. 1885) exemplify many of the characteristics of the 19th century Plain Folk architecture.

John Fry House

53 Talbot St. E., Jarvis, ON

The Canada Company held the first patent of this property in 1835.  In 1842 John Jones, from Woodstock, purchased the land.  Jones and his sons donated land and helped build the St. Paul’s Anglican Church, the annual Jarvis Fall Fair, and a community skating rink.  Resident son Edward was postmaster for many years and retired as the oldest postmaster in Canada.

This polychromatic brick house displays Italianate styling as seen in the hip roof, round-headed windows, paired brackets, and window arches.  Decorative brick patterning is found in the entry porch, at the wall corners and cornice, and above and below the windows.  In the entry doorway the arched sidelights flank both the door and transom.  The inner door has a large glass panel, sidelights and transom.  Iron rods pass through the house to help stabilize it.

3062 River Road, Cayuga, ON

James Kirkland, a Scottish immigrant, was an early Haldimand entrepreneur.  His whisky distillery at Indiana provided a major market for local grain.

His house built c. 1861, commands a spectacular view of the Grand River and is one of the finest and most substantial Italianate mansions in the town.

Kirkland House

57 Erie Street North, Selkirk, ON

This two-storey house is the only known surviving building of Norfolk County constructed on sun-dried mud blocks made from pea straw and clay, trampled by oxen.  Lt. John Dochstader sold this property to the Hoover family in 1800.  In  1817 Elizabeth (Hoover) Knisley received the land and the house remained in this family until 1903.  The Lindsay family took over the house in 1905.

In 1851, weatherboard was added to protect the façade.  The back and sides were plastered over, and in 1930’s weatherboard was added to these elevations.  The house has a center hall plan with a rear kitchen extension.  The doors and windows are deeply set to accommodate the mud blocks.

241 Broad Street West, Dunnville, ON

The original dwelling has remained mostly unaltered for approximately 100 years.  The two-storey porch was closed in for additional rooms in 1918.  In 1981 a committee to save the Lalor Estate was successful in preserving the home from severe alteration and destruction at that time.  Several reports were submitted to council for the use of the estate: a library, professional offices, municipal offices and to be demolished for an apartment complex.  The estate was sold at public auction and used as a retirement home for the next twenty years.

Lalor Estate

2330 Haldimand Road 3, Nanticoke, ON

This Lot was part of the King’s College Reserves. It sold in 1843 to John Mercer and others, and in 1852 to Col. Nathaniel Low from Toronto, who had an estate in Ireland. On his death in 1875, son Arthur argued over the will and was granted extra compensation. It is suggested that he built the house at this time. He was noted for raising horses. In 1950, James Morrow, a world famous metallurgist became the owner. He worked for Stelco for almost 50 years. In 1968, Ste1co purchased the house for public relations and reception purposes.

This 1 ½ storey polychromatic masonry building has a center hall plan. The central door, with decorative transom and sidelights is flanked by two 15-paned doors with arched transoms and buff hood moulds. Small basement windows above the doors are directly under the eaves. Buff-coloured brick pattern accents the corners of the building and under the roofline. Two large capped chimneys top the slate roof.

Low Residence

156 Caithness Street East, Caledonia, ON

One of the first fine homes built in Caledonia; this brick house was built about 1850 by Neil McKinnon who was raised by Ranald McKinnon, the founder of Caledonia.  Dr. Ranald McKinnon, who became the Medical Superintendent for the Six Nations Indians, was born in this house.  Later it was the home of A.C Buck, the town chemist, and was illustrated on the Tremaine map of 1863.  From 1884 to 1925 it was lived in by Dr. Forbes of prohibition fame.

McKinnon-Smith House

210 Broad Street West, Dunnville, ON

The House at 210 Broad Street West in Dunnville, owned by the Bartlett Family for many years, is a fine example of the homes built by the successful merchants of the town at the turn of the 20th century.  It has many decorative architectural features; such as ornate brick fireplaces, multi-paned windows.  A special feature of the home is the 1930’s kitchen with cabinetry styled typically to the period and very well preserved.

Mooney Residence