Ancestral Roofs

"In Praise of Older Buildings"

Monday, September 17, 2012

Magical Mystery Farm

 When we lived near North Bay, we would occasionally pass this farmstead on highway 17 near Deep River. The log complex always called out to me; it struck me as a significant historic grouping. True, there are a surprising number of log farms along highway 41 from Eganville to Pembroke...what is odd about this farm is how well kept it looks (no modern additions of sheet metal or plastic attesting to ongoing efforts to keep the place viable), yet how sterile and unused ( no livestock or signs of their activity, no people, no vehicles). We stopped the car and I took a few photos, and crept close enough to get a shot of the sign on the farmhouse...
 It reads "Main House - the house faces the original road which approached north-east from the Pembroke-Mattawa Road. The building is typical of the mid to late 19th century squared log structures. The farm was owned by Fergusons until 1930 when it was sold to a nephew, John King. Mr. King lived in the house until he sold the property to Atomic Energy of Canada Limited, in 1968."

So, what was the story of the homesteaders, their origins, their dreams, their successes and failures? Who was Mr. King? Why did he sell out to Atomic Energy and what are they doing with a log farmstead?

I can't find anything online, and don't have access to local histories. If my readers have any clues, I would be delighted to hear from you.


  1. I am a descendent of John King, we were led to believe in the 70s that this was going to be a tourist area and a new modern house was built for my great uncle John to live in which he really did not like, he stayed on the farm until his death, I am trying to find out right now who owns this property as my sister and I would love to visit it this summer, I was last there in the early 80s but no one was there. please let me know if you know who I can contact, I have letters from John to his twin brother (my grandfather) Duncan King and would be willing to place them in the house if it is a tourist stop.

    1. Hi
      The School House Museum would love to add this information to our collection on King's Farm. We are not located at the farm, but have a significant collection of records and photos of the farm, and recently we received a model of the farm that was donated by the current owners. The farm has been privately owned, for a number of years, by different individuals and has new owners within the last 2 years. One of the barn's roofs caved in last winter and the building was taken down. You can contact me Dianne Lemire at info@schoolhousemuseum and I can put you intouch with the owners

  2. I'm very sorry, but as you can tell from the post, we were mystified as to the origins and the future of this important grouping of log buildings, and have no information for you. We wish you luck in your search.