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Heritage Register
Rockland

942-44 St. Charles Street
Wilmar

Built 1909-10
Heritage-Designated 2001

For: William & Mary Todd

Architect: Samuel Maclure
Contractor: George Calder

942 St Charles

ARCHITECTURE:

Wilmar is a two-storey, Mission-style Arts & Crafts house; the Mission style is unusual for Victoria: see also 2667 Empire Av, Oaklands. It has many levels of multiple bellcast hipped roofs, with wide eaves and two dormers. Mission details include the red tile roof, the arcaded porte-cochère in front and arcaded porches on the left side and the rear. The porch on the left side has a pergola to its right and a balustraded balcony above. The porte-cochère has a bellcast hipped roof. The upper floor has Tudor Revival stucco and half-timbering, and banks of multi-paned leaded lights under the eaves. The lower floor is stuccoed. In a box bay on the right side, there was a good arched stained glass window, now replaced, depicting a landscape with windmill; it was made by William Morris & Co (Ruskin House), which is not the wellknown Morris & Co.

ORIGINAL OCCUPANTS:

William Charles Todd (1885- 1942) was born in Victoria to Charles Fox and Louisa Todd (Illahie, 1041 St. Charles St). In 1910 on the grounds of Illahie, he married Mary Chatwin Butchart (1886-1972), second daughter of Robert Pim and Jennie (McLaughlin) Butchart (906 St. Charles St; 1737 Rockland Av). Wilmar is a contraction of William and Mary’s first names.

William was secretary-treasurer of J.H. Todd & Sons, wholesale grocers, provisioners and salmon processors under the name Horseshoe Brand Salmon, founded by his grandfather, Jacob Hunter Todd (see Harris Green History), who died in 1899. William’s father Charles took over the firm and operated it with his two sons, William and Ernest. William was managing director by the early 1930s and assumed presidency of the firm after Charles died in 1941, but died himself the following year. William’s younger son Derek, who was born in 1921, started working in the firm in 1945, after his discharge from the RCAF at the end of 30 bombing missions. Because of climate change and possibly overfishing, J.H. Todd & Sons was bankrupt by the early 1950s. The assets, including six canneries and the fish traps, were divided and sold to BC Packers and the Canadian Fishing Co.

William and his father were generous donors to the Royal Jubilee Hospital. He and Mary had a country home in the Highlands district that is still in the family. Mary Todd remained in 944 until 1951, then moved into a suite in her sister’s house at 906 St. Charles St, where she died in 1972.

944 was triplexed in 1952. It was turned into condos with added townhouses in 2004.


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


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