Victoria Manor, a Provincial Historic Site in Riverside-Albert, served as the residence of the Hon. Abner Reid McClelan (1830-1917). McClelan, a respected figure in New Brunswick’s business and politics, contributed significantly to the local community.
McClelan’s business ventures spanned shipping, agriculture, and commerce. During the construction of his home, McClelan was a Canadian Senate member, later ascending to the role of New Brunswick’s tenth Lieutenant-Governor from 1896 to 1902. Victoria Manor, the grand Queen Anne Revival style mansion, built by McClelan in 1893, became his abode in his later years.
The architectural significance of the house is heightened by its designer, Watson E. Reid (1857-1943), a prominent architect who, at the time, lived locally. Among Reid’s notable works is the Riverside Consolidated School, designed in 1905. Born in Harvey, NB, Reid and his brothers also designed the esteemed Hotel del Coronado in California. Reid returned to New Brunswick in 1890 and remained until 1908 before relocating permanently to Vancouver.
The foundation of Victoria Manor, made of red sandstone from the nearby Memel Quarry (operational from 1880 to 1894), underscores the building’s regional connection. The Manor exemplifies the eclectic and elegant Queen Anne Revival style, reflecting McClelan’s status and taste. The exceptional materials, craftsmanship, and preservation of the house underscore its importance as a heritage landmark.
Distinguished features of the house include curved plate glass windows with diverse pane sizes and mullion patterns in the front tower, and a hand-painted stained glass image of Queen Victoria, encircled by reddish-brown maple leaves, in the main floor front bay window, dating back to circa 1897.
The house boasts seven unique coal-burning fireplaces in its principal rooms, each with a distinct design and ornate carved wooden mantels, epitomizing the Queen Anne Revival style’s versatility. These fireplaces feature glazed coloured tile facings, beveled glass mirrors, and columns that echo the main hall’s design elements.
Victoria Manor is located at 6 Maple Street in Riverside-Albert.
To see more photos of Victoria Manor, click on thumbnail below.
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