Heritage Register
Victoria West

521-23 Springfield Street
Stafford Court

Built 1891

For: Harriet M. Bostock

Builders: attributed to Henry Fairall & Sons

521-23 Springfield


Stafford Court is a two-storey brick Victorian duplex similar to 505-07 Springfield St. It has a side-ridged, hipped roof and twin corbelled chimneys. The windows in the upper floor are paired and directly above two angled bays. The full-width, hip-roofed verandah has square posts turned in the middle, V-joint T&G frieze, and Eastlake style balusters. The skirting is V-joint T&G. The entrance doors on the far ends have side lights and transoms. The present doors are not original. The house suffered a fire in July 1986; most of the damage was to the interior of 523.


Owners: 1891: Harriett Margaret Bostock (née East, b. London, ENG, 1836-1902) bought lots 49 and 50 of Springfield Estates for $450 each from John Russell (505-07 Springfield St) in 1891 or earlier. She had the duplex built on the south lot for $1,000 in 1891. [Note: Harriett and her husband Edwin Homan Bostock of Chingford, Essex, England, had owned and run the King’s Head public house in Chingford. After Edwin died in 1880, she continued as “Licenced Victualler.”] Harriett brought two of her three offspring to Victoria c.1889. This duplex provided a home for herself and her son Albert Homan “Al” Bostock in one side. When Harriett died of influenza, she was living with Al and his wife Bertha at 230 Robert St. Al owned the north lot 50 from 1902 and in 1906 built 529 Springfield St.

1892: Harriett sold lot 49, this duplex, to her daughter Amy/Aimee Homan Bostock (b. Chingford 1868-1939) and husband Edwin Macdougall (b. Essex, ENG, d.1954) who married in 1890 and lived in the other side on the duplex. Edwin, who came from Essex c.1887, was an Esquimalt Naval Yard carpenter, an electrician, and for many years a ookkeeper/accountant for BC Electric. He was renowned as a marksman. The family moved in 1908 to 638 Dallas Rd and Al and Bertha Bostock moved to 638 Battery St, James Bay, a block away. The Macdougalls’ two sons Alexander and Douglas both signed up for the CEF in WWI, Douglas in 1914 and Alexander in 1915. Alexander, a CPR brakeman and conductor, married Edna M.P. Hawke in 1912. Douglas, a surveyor’s assistant and then a forrester, married Catherine McLeod. Edwin died in Nanaimo where he resided with Alexander and Edna.

Owners: 1907-58
: Katherine/Catherine Elizabeth Fraser (b. Kingston, ON, 1878-1965) and Mary Forbes Fraser (b. Kingston 1880-1951) owned the duplex; their father, widowed accountant Donald Fraser (b. Perth, ON, 1841-1933), paid the taxes until 1912. The women remained single, resided at 1108 Esquimalt Rd until their deaths, and rented out this duplex.

521 Tenants: 1910-13: BCER “motorneer” Arthur R. Dancey.
1917-18: Carpenter Alexander Ewing and machinist John Robertson Drysdale of Ewing Mermod & Co, machinists; their partner William Mermod lived at 448 Moss St, Fairfield.
1923-31: Clara Purdy (née Tabner, b. ENG, 1872-1942), the widow of S. Purdy, immigrated to BC in 1920.

1932-33: Seaman George Coronation McGeorge and Evangeline Margaret Bland married in Vancouver in 1929.
1936-38: Engineer and barber John Campbell and Emily Cook married in Victoria in 1915; John took eight years off his age when he signed up for the CEF in 1917.
1939: Hotel worker then driller and machinist Thomas and Elizabeth Hay Vance married in Victoria in 1933.

1940: Vera Richardson, whose husband William Reginald, a ship’s steward, was on WWII active service.
1941-43: Anabelle Constance Marsel, whose husband Frank (b. Olalla, BC, 1904-1987), a rancher, was on WWII active service.
1944-48: Fish packer then BCCSS/CPR engineer Peter Doherty (b. IRL 1894-1969) and Emily Edwards (née Hodgkinson, b. ENG 1908) married in Prince Rupert in 1926.
1949-50: Empress Hotel “washman” Arthur and Nora Clements.

523 Tenants: 1910-11: Soldier and E&N Brakeman Edward Joseph and Josephine Maud Bird married in Victoria in 1903.
1912-14: E&N brakeman Ernest “Henry” and Ellen Spall married in Victoria in 1905. Henry immigrated to Canada in 1900 and worked 30 years on the railroad.
1917: Civil engineer Edward Hooper and Margaret Killenback Wilkinson married in Victoria in 1889; they lived at 222 Mary St, Vic West, c.1890-96.

1920: Blacksmith Frederick and Bessie Violetta Bates married in Cumberland, BC, in 1907.
1923-25: Pacific Construction Co master mechanic William and Jane Haggart married in Wellington, BC, in 1896.
1927: Chief Stoker George Francis Gibbons, RCN, and his wife Lillian married in Victoria in 1924. When he died in 1945 he was stationed at HMCS Givenchy in Esquimalt and was buried in the Naval Cemetery. 1929-30: Sarah Ellen Dodds, widow of Frederick, and her daughter Florence Ivernia, a packer at Ormond’s Ltd who married Sidney Roofing Co millhand Walter William Hawes in 1931.

1936-48: Alice Edmonds (née Crossman. b. Durham, ENG, 1895-1970), widow of postman Joseph Henry, and their offspring Louisa, Olive and E&N watchman Arthur. Alice and Joseph had married in St Saviour’s in 1914 and Joseph signed up for the CEF in 1917. Alice rented rooms in 1944 to Annie Lillian Venn, the daughter of Lillian and Charles Fisher (225 Skinner St, Vic West), who married Victor Francis Venn in 1934. Victor was probably on active service, and Annie was living here with their son Victor Francis.

*Bostock & Macdougall family research by Julia Trachsel.


• Vic West History

• Vic West Heritage Register

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

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