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Heritage Register
Rockland

1025 Moss Street (ex-935 Moss St)

Built 1912-13
Heritage-Registered

For: George & Josephine Richardson

Architect: Samuel Maclure
Contactors: Alex J. Murray & Ernest Owen Aves


1025 Moss

ARCHITECTURE:

This is a symmetrical, two-storey, hip-roofed Georgian Revival house. However, the horizontal lines of the wide enclosed eaves, the belt course and the water table reference Frank Lloyd Wright and the early Prairie School style. Its densely half-timbered upper floor is separated from the stuccoed lower floor by the belt course. The half-timbering and the sets of tall, narrow, paired windows provide a vertical counterpoint to the horizontal elements. On the left and right sides are hip-roofed box bays. The centrallylocated entrance porch has a bracketed, hipped canopy. The entry walls, balustrade and step balustrades are of granite. Leaded casement windows are on either side of the offset entry door. There are two broad chimneys clad in roughcast stucco with brick corbels. The foundation is of granite.

ORIGINAL OCCUPANTS:

1912-53: George Richardson (1867-1922) and Josephine Lillian (née Burkholder, b. Bethesda, ON 1876-1953) married in 1897. Josephine came to Victoria in 1882. [George was born in Victoria to Mary Anne and George Alfred Richardson, Sr, who arrived in Victoria on the Norman Morison in the spring of 1850. In 1858 they built Victoria’s first brick hotel, the Victoria, later known as the Windsor Hotel (901-905 Government St, Downtown). The hotel survived an explosion in 1876 caused by the accidental ignition of gas near an open candle flame. George Sr. kept the hotel until 1903. Mary Anne ran the Gordon House boarding house on Gordon St.]

George Jr. prospered as a dry goods merchant, first with Brown & White on Government St. In 1898 he opened G.A. Richardson & Co at 636 Yates St, Downtown. He soon accumulated the wealth to build this home in Victoria’s most prestigious neighbourhood.

OTHER OCCUPANTS:

1924-53: Daughter Edith Lillian Richardson (1897-1983) married Ainslie James Helmcken (1900-1987, 1015 Moss St) in 1924, and they lived here until 1953. He was educated as a lawyer, and served overseas during WWI from 17 years of age. He later worked in a variety of fields, and in 1965 he began work on what became the City of Victoria Archives. Ainslie retired in 1983 and in 1984 was made a Freeman of the City, “for outstanding contribution to the City’s historical wealth as one of its leading historians.”

1954-58+: Victoria Pile Driving Co superintendant Frank Hammond (b. Manchester, ENG, 1894-1968) and Elizabeth (née Cleemoff); they resided at 934 Foul Bay Rd, Gonzales, when Frank died.

1970-2014+: Dr. Derek "Pete" Kidd bought the house from the second family for $50,000. In 1985 her married Patricia, a cultural historian, who was Curator of Decorative Arts at the AGGV (1040 Moss St).

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION & IMAGES:

• Map of Victoria's Heritage Register Properties

• Rockland History

• Rockland Heritage Register

• Hallmark Heritage Society Archives

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


© VICTORIA HERITAGE FOUNDATION (VHF) 2014
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