Heritage Register

2667 Empire Avenue

Built 1913
Heritage-Designated 1985

For: Arthur & Violet Levy

Architects: William D'Oyly Rochfort & Eban W. Sankey

2677 Empire


This large, dramatically-sited California Mission Revival-style house has a complex red-tiled roof and is clad in roughcast stucco. The roofline consists of a series of large and small stepped mission-style arched gables. The offset main entrance below a smaller gable leads to a wrap-around verandah. The shed roof of the verandah is supported by huge square paired piers. There are several large three-part round arched windows. On the roof at the SW corner is a square structure which became a suite. Along the street frontage is an old stone retaining wall.

This house was assessed at $8,000 in 1914. The 1913 plumbing permit was signed by H.N. Palmatier as agent for owner; he was likely working for Rochfort & Sankey. Palmatier is known to have signed as architect on several Victoria houses (427 Arnold, Fairfield).


1913-18: Arthur Levy (b. Seattle 1885-1961) married divorcée Amelia “Violet” Haggart (née Hilbert, b. Leeds, ENG 1880-1947) in Vancouver in 1907. His father Henry Emanuel “H.E.” Levy (b. Wellington, NZ, 1843-1929) came here in 1859 and established Levy’s Arcade Oyster Saloon at 1316-18 Government St (Downtown) in 1865 (it “never closed”). Leaving his brother Joseph “Joe” in charge, H.E. moved to Seattle where he married socialite Eva Rostein (b. New York, NY 1882-1946) in 1882. They moved back to Victoria in 1889. H.E. brought Arthur into the business and passed Levy’s Restaurant onto him in 1907. Arthur sold it in 1912, then ran the Poodle Dog Cafe on Yates St until 1941. He and Violet lived with his parents and later his widowed mother at 1022 Pemberton Rd before and after living at 2667 Empire St. (Eva’s sister Ida Rostein married Dr. Siegfried Moritz “Max” Hartman, DD (1009 Cook St, Fairfield) in Victoria in 1888.)


1919-75: James McFarland Wood (b. Tamworth, ON 1887-1974) and Marguerita Helena “Rita” (née Cameron, b. Victoria 1892-1975) married in 1908. Jim came to Victoria that year and opened Wood’s Garage on Government St near Superior with the first Ford dealership. He then established a plant in Clinton, ON, to extend the frame of the Ford Model T and install a chain drive, creating the first half-ton truck. He sold them until c.1916 when Henry Ford began selling half-ton trucks. By 1911, Jim was proprietor of Wood Motor Co on Broughton St, then became manager of Begg Motor Co, which sold Cadillacs. He once delivered one to Cumberland, travelling two days and carrying enough fuel to make the journey, as there were no gas stations. In 1946, Jim opened his dealership at Cook and Yates, selling Dodge and Plymouth. He retired in the mid-1950s and he and Rita travelled the globe. An avid golfer, Jim was a member of the Uplands, Royal Colwood and Victoria Golf Clubs. He and Rita lived here until their deaths.


• Map of Victoria Heritage Register Properties

• Oaklands History

• Oaklands Heritage Register

• This Old House, Victoria's Heritage Neighbourhoods,
Volume Three: Rockland, Burnside, Harris Green,
Hillside-Quadra, North Park & Oaklands

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