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Paterson Matheson House Heritage Site

atison-Matheson House

The Paterson-Matheson House at 1039 Louise Avenue is a provincial heritage site. photo: Manitoba Historic Resources Branch

The splendid Paterson-Matheson House is one of Manitoba’s finest late nineteenth century houses.

The house was built for George A. Paterson in 1893 by Brandon’s William Bell and Sons.

The 1893 brick-veneer structure, with its large 1904 addition, occupies a narrow corner lot in an area that retains its heritage character.

It is a rare example of a Queen Anne Revival design with Eastlake detailing.

And, a good illustration of a brick-veneer dwelling turned into something quite extraordinary through the use of ornamental details.

A magnificent stained-glass window entitled Listening, designed by noted Winnipeg artist John Allward, is a unique feature of the dwelling’s rich interior.

Norman A. Matheson, the owner, donated the house to the Western Region Alcoholism Foundation of Manitoba in 1969.

Manitoba Historic Resources Branch


Key elements of the Queen Anne Revival design and Eastlake detailing that make the Paterson Matheson House a local landmark include:

the asymmetrical form of the 1893 structure, with elements such as:

• the complex hip roof with steep cross-gable roofs

• angled front verandah

• tower balcony with a conical roof at the southwest corner

• the two-storey gabled bay on the west facade

the 1904 north addition with a steep cross-gable roof

• gabled dormers on two sides

• a two-storey gabled bay in the northwest corner

the abundance of wooden Eastlake ornamentation, including

• the elaborately turned posts, ball spindles, curved brackets and spindle work in the verandah,

• the circular tower balcony with turned posts, the tower finials, ornate gingerbread trim with semi-circular decorations within the gables.

the number and variety of windows, including

• tall rectangular openings with arched heads

• decorative keystones on all four elevations

• small rectangular openings in the dormer and gable ends

the variety of materials and details, including

• light red-brown brick wall surfaces

• limestone window sills,

• a stringcourse that wraps around the structure’s second floor

• tall brick chimneys with chimney caps.

Key elements of the dwelling’s rich interior character include:

the spacious expanded layout, based on a side-hall plan with

• large living and dining rooms, kitchen, den and small sitting room on the main floor

• a grand open staircase to the second-floor hallway and bedrooms.

the richly detailed oak staircase, with a fine curved balustrade and the Allward stained-glass window in an oak casing on the second-floor landing

elaborate fireplaces in walnut or oak surrounds, each with tile inlay and mirrored overmantels, in the sitting room, den and second-floor hall

fine stained-glass windows in the dining and sitting rooms

• leaded-glass openings in the living room and den and a small coloured-glass window under the main staircase

many original features, including

• classically detailed, dark-stained oak door and window casings with elaborate heads

• high oak baseboards, oak pocket doors in the hall between the living and dining rooms,

• free-standing carved Corinthian columns that flank the sitting room doorways

• the oak front- and second- floor doors with oval windows of bevelled glass,

• oak flooring at the front entrance, maple floors in the dining room, hall and den.

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