Fulford Place National Historic Site of Canada
© Parks Canada Agency / Agence Parcs Canada.
287 King Street East, Brockville, Ontario
Historic Sites and Monuments Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. H-4)
1899 to 1901
Event, Person, Organization:
Albert W. Fuller
George Taylor Fulford
J. Hoodless & Son
Existing plaque: 287 King Street East, Brockville, Ontario
Built in 1899-1900, this eclectic mansion evokes the opulent lifestyle of Canada's industrial elite at the turn of the century. Designed by American architect A. W. Fuller, it was the spacious residence of Senator George T. Fulford (1852-1905), who made his fortune in patent medicines. The remarkably fine period interior includes most of the original furniture, fixtures, dinnerware, linens, and objets d'art. The grounds, of which significant elements survive, were landscaped by the prestigious Olmsted Brothers' firm.
Description of Historic Place
Located along King Street East in Brockville, Ontario, overlooking the Saint Lawrence River, Fulford Place National Historic Site of Canada was the residence of businessman and senator George T. Fulford. The house is a large stone structure, two-and-a-half storeys high, with a gently pitched roof, an asymmetrical and picturesque elevation, and richly finished interior. Together with its original furnishings, this estate constitutes a remarkably intact example of the type of residence erected by the wealthy in the late-19th and early-20th centuries. The general spatial layout of the site retains the structural elements of the landscape as it was originally laid out by the Olmsted Brothers, an American landscape firm. Official recognition refers to the building and its associated surviving grounds in their existing spatial relationships.
Fulford Place was designated a national historic site of Canada in 1992 because: it is a fine example of an eclectic mansion, with its original furnishings and fittings largely intact; it retains significant remnants of Olmsted-designed landscape.
The heritage value of Fulford Place resides in the fact that it is a particularly fine example of the type of mansion built for the wealthy in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Such residences typically were quite large, designed in the stylistic eclecticism of the times; in this case, the design is predominantly Beaux Arts in its general symmetry and classical detailing, with Romanesque Revival elements in the rusticated treatment of the masonry. The interior spaces feature the suite of public and private rooms, as well as extensive service areas, typical of mansions of the time where a great deal of entertaining was undertaken, supported by a large household staff. The house is remarkable in that most of the original furnishings – furniture, china, pictures, and family mementos, etcetera – survive in situ. Such estates typically also featured extensive landscaped grounds; remnants of the landscape as originally laid out by the Olmsted Brothers firm still survive.
Source: Commemorative Integrity Statement, 2003.
Key elements contributing to the heritage value of this site include: its location along King Street East overlooking the Saint Lawrence River; the design of the house, its use of Beaux-Arts classical motifs, eclecticism, rich and varied use of building and finishing materials, volume, verandahs and piazzas, structural steel construction; internal disposition of spaces, internal ornamentation and fittings; the relationship between the house and its surviving surrounding grounds and in relation to King Street; the exceptional surviving collection of furnishings in their original location; the surviving remnants of the Olmsted grounds, including the gates and low stone wall facing King Street, the curved driveway, the location and outline of the exterior spatial areas, including the location and outline of the Italian garden, the terraces and rock garden, garden ornaments, and location of specimen trees. archaeological resources reflective of the original design and construction of this estate; surviving and largely intact collection of objects, including china, furniture, linens, silverware and objets d’art. views towards the Saint Lawrence River.