Buttercup Farm House

11243 58 Street NW, Edmonton

The Buttercup Farm House was built in 1912 as a two-storey residence with a side-facing gable roof, a wide gable roofed front dormer, a full-length front verandah and a second storey balcony. It is clad in clapboard siding and wooden shingles and has an attached single car garage. It is located on a residential street and occupies a single city lot in the Highlands, a mature neighbourhood in Edmonton. The municipal designation includes the exterior elevations, the attached garage. With the exception of the interior trims, mouldings, doors, fireplace and staircase, the interior is considered a non-contributing element.

Heritage Value

Buttercup Farm House is significant for its design, as well as its association with the development policies of Magrath and Holgate in the Highlands subdivision.

Built in 1912, Buttercup Farm House is significant for reflecting design principles popular in Edmonton before the First World War. During the first decade of the 1900s residential construction in Edmonton favoured simple designs, prized natural materials and minimized decorations which at the time were considered by many to be useless. The practical application of this trend in design is evident in the composition of the Buttercup Farm House, which employed contrasting clapboard siding and cedar shingle cladding, both natural elements readily available at the time. Functional elements which added detail to the house while not compromising the desire for simplicity included the scuppers in the verandah and balcony and the large pillars supporting the shed roof over the verandah. The sculpted rafters under the eaves and similarly shaped brackets under the projecting window on the north elevation allude to the home’s structure and contribute to the popular principle of honesty in design. Buttercup Farm House is valued for embodying the design ethos of Edmontonians in the period before the First World War.

The Buttercup Farm House is significant for its association with residential development policies of Magrath & Holgate in the Highlands subdivision. The community was established in 1910 by real estate speculators William J. Magrath and Bidwell Holgate as an upscale bedroom community for Edmonton. They primarily subdivided lots and sold them to owners on the condition that the resulting houses have a minimum construction cost of $2,500. The early homes resulting from this development policy were all similar to Buttercup Farm House, and typically had large square footprints, were two storeys in height, and employed wood frame construction with clapboard and cedar shingle cladding. Buttercup Farm House and homes like it contributed to the sense of sophistication and class sought by early developers in the Highlands. As one of the better surviving examples the home now makes an important contribution to the character of the neighbourhood.

Source: City of Edmonton Planning and Development Department POSSE File 078945338.

Character-Defining Elements

The heritage value of the Buttercup Farm House is expressed in such character-defining elements as:

  • timber single siding on the first and second levels separated from clapboard siding and corner boards below the ground floor window sill level with a timber belt course;
  • side-facing gable roof with large central gable on the front and rear elevations;
  • open verandah, shed roof supported by heavy brick and timber columns with upper brackets. Verandah is wider than the roof with brick columns at each end. Exposed beams and tongue and groove ceiling detail. Lower rail is enclosed with timber siding down to ground level;
  • open balcony on top of the porch with wide trimmed door opening and rail enclosed with timber shingles;
  • off centre wooden front door;
  • exposed rafters and tongue and groove sheathing under the eaves;
  • brick chimney stack;
  • original wooden windows on the front elevation including the double casement window (6 panes each) at the attic level, the 9 over 1 double hung window on the second floor and the three timber sash windows at ground level (9 over 1) wide timber trim;
  • original wooden windows on the south elevation including centrally placed timber sash window (6 over 1) with wide timber trim at the upper level, the casement window (6 panes) with wide timber trim at lower west wall, and the bay window with two timber sash window (9 over 1), shingle siding returns, shed roof, supporting timber brackets underneath and two narrow brackets supporting the roof;
  • original wooden windows on the north elevation including two casement window (6 panes) with wide timber trim at upper levels, casement window (6 panes) with wide timber trim at lower west wall, and bay window with two timber sash window (6 over 1), shingle siding returns, shed roof, supporting timber brackets underneath and two narrow brackets supporting the roof;
  • original wooden windows on the east elevation including multi-paned casement and sash windows with wide timber trims;
  • central timber door below bay window on north elevation with wide timber trim; and
  • interior period mouldings, trims, doors, fireplace and staircase.

SEE ALSO:

Other early Highlands homes: Grierson ResidenceChown ResidenceRoss Residence, , 

 

Designation & Awards

Municipal Historic Resource (November 26, 2010)

Comments

Carol E. (Craig) Sims - 23 Jun 2015

I lived with my parents and two sisters in this house from 1942 to 1962. The house is built on 2, not 1 city lot. The name buttercup farmhouse is apt because there was an additional third lot which contained a barn. This adjacent lot was sold in the period immediately following the end of World War II. ,when the area was developed as a residential district. Prior to that time the area within 60th street to 55th Street and 112th to 118th Avenue was fenced and rented by my father for pasture.

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Era: Urban Growth
Themes: Homes
Cultural Groups:
Area: Northeast

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