Ancestral Roofs

"In Praise of Older Buildings"

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Did he really say bastardized?

One of my favourite history websites (and the most prolific one I know) is the meticulously researched Marmora Historical Foundation site, renewed almost daily by the dedicated local historians Anne and Andre Philpot.

Georgian proportions, Hastings
Today's post really hit home, on a subject which causes me pain on occasion. It's the story of the large red brick Georgian house at
# 3 Forsyth Street in Marmora.  Here's the best look I can offer you; thanks Streetview. The post highlights the evolution of former fine homes into businesses, with frontages which certainly don't respect, and in most cases, totally obliterate, the formal proportions and hand-fashioned detail of early homes.

In the case of today's post, the Philpots relate the transformation of an 1868 Georgian home in Marmora to commercial and office uses. And yes, he really said that.

I don't find too many of these metamorphoses in my photo files, as I find them painful to look at, and challenging to record. I know. I know. I fully accept that old houses standing on former quiet residential streets-become-busy-downtowns will not survive intact over the years.  I also acknowledge the decline that time creates.

And admittedly, many c19 homes weren't separated from business areas; in fact many housed the family shop on the same premises.

Loss is inevitable. But we still can grieve.

Thanks for grieving with us, Philpots.


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