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Horaceville (ghost town)

Report

Discovered by marley2286
Created Jan 22 2012
Recent status Historic Location
Category Ghost Town
City Ottawa, Ontario
Location # 3923
Liked by 0 User(s)

A young Hamnet Kirkes Pinhey (36) received a 1000 acre land grant as a reward for serving in the British army as a King George III's Messenger. Pinhey decided to retire, leaving England and travelled to Upper Canada to begin a new life. Pinhey was already a wealthy individual having been involved as a London importer and acting as a ship insurance broker. With his amassed fortune, he began construction of his home on the west shore of the Ottawa River. The original home consisted of a small two storey home that was finished in 1821. The home featured a verandah with seperate stone kitchen.

After the home was completed Pinhey spent the next four years expanding it by adding on another two-storey section. The main floor served as a grand parlour and contained upstairs bedrooms for the servants. During 1841-42, a central hall kitchen wing with a sweeping staircase leading to an upstairs dining room was constructed for his future one day daughter-in-law. A bedroom stood over the front entrance.

Pinhey made further additions to his land that included a a grist mill, sawmill, lime kiln, ash house, homes for his employees, two floor loghouses and granary and malt kins. Seven cannons stood guard, facing the river.

Pinhey, who continued to prosper as a politician and insurance broker, named the estate, Horaceville, after his oldest son Horace. Horace was to be the heir to the estate., as was British aristocratic tradition.

The land also contained a barn, stone stable, powder magazine and St. Mary's Church. Construction on the church began in 1825 and held its first service on October 7th, 1827. The grand opening featured a seven gun salute from the cannons. The building of the church was not without its controversy however. There were differing opinions on whether the church should be built along the Ottawa River or further inland. To settle the debate, Pinhey donated part of his land and the labour.

In the end, the Bishop was not pleased with the church's location and as such, refused to consecrate it. The Bishop felt that more people would be able to attend the church if it had been built closer to land. To rectify this, Colonel Lloyd financed the construction of another church, St. John's South which was opened in 1840.

In 1832 Hamnett turned to running for politics as a candidate for Carleton County in Upper Canadian Parliament. While he did not hold this position for long, in 1845 he was elected as a Warden for the County of Carleton and held the position for the next seven years.

Horace Pinhey, the eldest son, married Kate Greene on August 21, 1847. The wedding took place in the St. Mary's Church. It was then that Hamnet completed construction of his estate. He added a drawing room, library and pantry to the ground floor and more upstairs bedrooms. Expansion was completed in 1849.

Hamnett Pinhey's wife died in 1852. It was at this time that Hamnett beautified the church grounds. He created a family plot and enlarged the burial grounds and constructed a rock wall around it. Flowers were also planeted. Hamnett died in 1857.

Still more problems for the St. Mary's Church. No more than ten years after its construction, a large crack in the foundation was discovered. Repairs were attempted in 1891 however it was evident that the church would have to be abandoned. It was partially dismantled, and dynamite was used in an attempt to destroy the church. In 1907, Mrs. Monk donated a portion of her land for a new St. Mary's to be built.

By the 1920's, parts of the house were closed or fell into a state of deterioration. By the 1970's the cottage and kitchen were removed due to dangerous structural issues.

Miss Ruth Pinhey was the last family member to live in the home. She lived in the central wing, which was deteriorating along with the remainder of the estate. When she died in 1971, the property was purchased by the March Township. The Pinhey Point Foundation was established to preserve and develop the property.

Today, many old foundations remain, a picnic area, the church and Pinhey's large manor house still stand. The place is well maintained and offers an excellent view of the Ottawa river. Original artifacts and photos can be seen on the second floor of the home.

Directions: Head to Dunrobin (up highway 49 from the Queensway 417). Travel east from Dunrobin to 6 Line Rd. Drive south until you reach Pinhey's Point Road

Latlng: (45.440366, -75.953247)

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