953 St. Patrick Street, Oak Bay, British Columbia, V8S, Canada
Richard Oliver House
Links and documents
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
The Oliver House is a 1 1/2 storey cottage and shed situated within a garden setting, located in the McNeil/South Oak Bay neighbourhood. Built in 1911, this house was originally a simple side-gable roofed house with two front dormers and a rear dormer. Additions in 1913 and 1928 enlarged the side-gabled roof forward toward the street, covering a nine foot wide porch, the width of the house. A shed was added in the back yard in 1929. The house has no basement.
The Oliver House is valued as an idiosyncratic residence, built by contractor Richard Oliver the year after he moved from 947 Foul Bay Road, which he had built in 1909 with fellow contractor James Townsend.
This house represents how a contractor/owner can affect the character of the neighbourhood, by building unusual houses that use both distinctive materials (slate roof, stucco walls), and distinctive styles (cottage forms). The Oliver House is an important heritage asset in the local neighbourhood. The original slate roof has been removed: it was "more slate than shingle" in 1936 and more shingle than slate in 1985. By the early 1990s all of the slate roof had been removed.
The interior has a mantlepiece with original Victorian tiles and an original Victorian-style stairway and balustrade, both at odds with the actual date of construction, yet the home has retained the charm of a rustic cottage.
The early renovations of the house have taken on their own significance. The double-sloped roof and front porch are valued as a further expression of the cottage form, with the heavy timbered supports and ground level porch floor.
Source: Corporation of the District of Oak Bay
Key elements that define the character of the Oliver House include:
- low-level cottage form of the house in a cottage garden setting
- large, ground level, deep front porch framed by heavy timbers
- distinctive double sloped roof, defining an early addition to the front of the house
- stucco exterior
- north-south gable roof
- two small dormers to the front and one rear dormer
- multi-paned, heavily mullioned windows
- interior Victorian mantlepiece and Victorian-style stairway
- the early garden shed in the back yard
Local Governments (BC)
Local Government Act, s.954
Community Heritage Register
1913/01/01 to 1913/01/01
1928/01/01 to 1928/01/01
Theme - Category and Type
- Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
- Architecture and Design
Function - Category and Type
- Single Dwelling
Architect / Designer
Location of Supporting Documentation
Corporation of the District of Oak Bay
Cross-Reference to Collection