Constructed between 1826 and 1828, the Soldier’s Barracks is a sturdy three-story stone building located at the intersection of Queen and Carleton Streets in Fredericton. Originally built to house over 240 British soldiers, it featured three 19-bed rooms, nine 16-bed rooms, and six attic rooms. In 1863, the barracks’ capacity was expanded with the addition of a residence for married soldiers, accomplished by constructing six dormers in the attic rooms.
Although the Barracks’ structured and relatively symmetrical design is considered a blend of Georgian and Palladian styles, its utilitarian nature is clear from its lack of ornamentation, predominantly rubble stone walls, and external circulation via the river-side balconies. It’s unclear who designed the structure, although some records suggest it could have been John Woolford. After the departure of the Imperial troops in 1869, the Barracks saw various tenants, including a teacher-training facility, a Women’s Christian Temperance Union, and somewhat ironically, a liquor warehouse.
In 1964, when the entire Military Compound was designated as a National Historic Site, the Barracks’ exterior was restored to mirror its 1865 appearance, with one interior suite also restored and opened for public viewing.
Noteworthy features include the sundial on the east wall, a reproduction of the original that once served as a timekeeper for the citizens of Fredericton in the 19th century, and a commemorative plaque honouring the 104th Regiment. This regiment embarked on a remarkable 700-mile, 52-day march to Quebec and Kingston during the winter of 1813, impressively without losing a single soldier!
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