Ancestral Roofs

"In Praise of Older Buildings"

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Beautiful Blondes

Old County Court House

Coming from a red brick town as I do, I am always surprised and delighted to enter a community where the prevailing colour is buff (or white, as it was often called.)

40 Bond Street West (1870) 

The articles I've consulted explain it simply enough - it's all about the amount of iron in the clay. Higher iron content yields pink or red brick, As nearly all bricks were created close to home before the advent of the railway, the prevailing colours of some old brick neighbourhoods can be blamed on the local claybanks. Another article I read suggested aluminium was implicated, in inverse proportions, but I can't find that tonight.
straw-coloured Ontario farmhouse

I've also read that buff or yellow brick was considered more prestigious in some circles, for civic buildings,so that bricks of that colour may have travelled about a bit, once the railways made that feasible (if not particularly easy.)

stately Second Empire

Then of course, there are the wonderful outcrops of polychromatic brick here and there about the countryside. Another time, perhaps.

 neighbourhood in buff

For tonight, I just want to post these wonderful Lindsay homes of yellow brick.

Bond Street Tudor Revival
45 Victoria Victorian
serene Edwardian Classicism

eclectic Edwardian? - battlements, French doors, fish scale shingles

wintry Italianate

John Knowlson house - 43 Russell Street East

Sheriff John McLennan house (1875)

Pretty impressive when they're separated out from their red brick, stone and frame neighbours aren't they? Serene, stately, pale and aloof. No blonde jokes even come to mind.

1 comment:

  1. Couldn't agree more about these bldgs being easy on the eyes....they're beautiful. I especially liked 40 Bond st. and Wintry Italianate.

    Here in Toronto you see a fair number, one of my personal favourites being 68 Hazelton Ave.. Its easy to google-map and worth the effort. Also worth noting that William Lyon Mackenzie's house is as well. I believe it dates to the 1840's and certainly no later than the 1858....

    Its amazing how much brick was used in Ontario, compared to other jurisdictions. All this talk of bricks reminds me of a schooner in 1913 which tried to cross the Bay of Fundy w/ a cargo of 100,000 never made it and smashed onto the rocks in the most dramatic way imaginable.....