Heritage Register

1432 Gladstone Avenue
(ex-104 North Chatham St)

Built 1891

For: Robert & Hannah Ewin

Builder: Robert Ewin


This single-storey, hipped-roof dwelling has a pedimented, bracketed cutaway bay on its right front. There are still dentils and brackets below the pediment. The windows and door to the left of the bay were severely altered and the porch was removed sometime after the house was placed on the City’s Heritage Register in the 1970s. There is a square bay on the left side towards the rear. The house was stuccoed over the drop siding and the unusual decorative shingling in the pediment. The impression is that the bay came from a Victorian Queen Anne cottage and was added to an otherwise plain house.


1891-94: Carpenter and builder Robert Ewin (b. ENG, 1863-1943) and Hannah Threlkeld (b. ENG, 1864-1965) emigrated to Canada in 1890 and built the house the following year. By 1895 they were living in Kaslo, BC, although they owned the house until 1902. They moved to New Westminster in 1936. Robert retired in 1942. Hannah died aged 101 in Vancouver.


Tenants: 1899-1900: William Charles and Emily Helen Lyall were born in Ontario. During his lifetime William worked as a salesman, bookkeeper, merchant and later a smelter tester. They moved to Princeton, where daughter Doris Tremayne Lyall, a drug clerk, died aged 22 in November 1918 of Spanish Influenza.

Owners: 1901-04: Jane “Jennie” Fraser (b. SCT, 1851) and her husband, the Rev. Alexander Fraser (b. Bury, Inverness, SCT, 1844-1903). Alex was ordained in Toronto in 1878. They moved to Comox, BC, in 1887, and in July 1888 he held the first Presbyterian services in the new mining community of Union, now Cumberland. Alex supported the Dunsmuirs in their prohibition of liquor in Union, a policy which may not have endeared the minister to the miners. After working in San Pedro, CA, the Frasers moved to Victoria in 1899, and Alex became the pastor of Oak Bay, Spring Ridge and Cedar Hill Presbyterian Churches. He died here of typhoid fever, and Jane and their daughter Katie then left the province.

1906-53: Ruther Wilson (b. Victoria, 1872-1944) & Bertha Agnes (née Hartley, b. McKillop, ON, 1881-1987) moved in after their marriage in 1906. [Note: Ruther’s parents were Alexander and Mary Wilson. Alex, born in Quebec City, was a gold messenger for the Bank of British North America, and was sent here in 1859 via New York, Panama and San Francisco, a trip he always referred to as “hell on earth.” In 1864 Alex and two brothers set up a plumbing and gasfitting business. In 1868 he married Mary Cleaver, who had come all by herself from Scotland to Victoria aged 15 in 1865 via the same route as Alex. He was a founder of the Jubilee Hospital.]

Ruther was a bookkeeper in the family business A&W Wilson that became a stove and tinware company. Three of Ruther’s brothers also worked in the business, but by 1939 it was just Ruther and William, as plumbers and sheet metal workers. Bertha died in Victoria at 105.


• Fernwood History

• Fernwood Heritage Register

• This Old House, Victoria's Heritage Neighbourhoods,
Volume One: Fernwood & Victoria West

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