J.W. Jones House - Kelowna, BC
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member ScroogieII
N 49° 53.191 W 119° 29.088
11U E 321512 N 5528973
A beautifully restored and maintained Queen Anne residence, this is now home to a law group.
Waymark Code: WM13133
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Date Posted: 08/23/2020
Views: 1

This large Queen Anne building is one with which we have had personal experience. No, not because we required the services of the Heritage Law Group, the present denizens of 830 Bernard Avenue, but because we cleaned the building for many months in a previous life.

For several years, early in the 2000s, Barb operated a cleaning service; this was one of her contracts which we cleaned every weekend. The exactingly restored interior of the building is even more impressive than is the exterior, with all the original Victorian detail of the 1912 residence either restored or reproduced. The interior today is a showcase of Victorian styling, with vast amounts of woodwork to be seen, including the original wood floors, fully restored. The exterior, of course, has received the same careful attention to detail in its restoration as has the interior.

Following is text from the historical marker at the residence.
J.W. Jones House
Classic Foursquare

The Heritage Law Group building (J.W.Jones House) was built by the late James (Jimmy) Williams Jones in 1912. Jimmy moved to Kelowna in 1907 from Ontario and became a prominent member of Kelowna's municipal political scene. He served on Kelowna City Council from 1910 to 1916, 5 years of which he was the Mayor. In 1916, Jimmy was elected to the BC Conservatives and was appointed Speaker when the party came to power in 1928. In 1930, as Finance Minister, he introduced a 1% tax deduction on all incomes over $25.00, earning him the nickname "One Percent Jones". Jimmy moved to Victoria in 1933 and passed away in 1954.

This beautiful home was purchased from the Athans family in July 1999 by lawyer Martin (Marty) Johnson. Marty's vision of restoring the building for commercial use was coupled with his strong commitment to preserving its original heritage quality and beauty. Renovations started in the spring of 2000 and were completed that fall.

The windows and doors were custom-designed in antique fashion and an octagonal window was installed on the second floor facing the street. Inside, the ceilings were raised for a more open appeal and enhanced with custom crown moldings. In February 2001, Mart 's efforts were recognized by the Central Okanagan Heritage Society with an award for his outstanding restoration of this iconic heritage building. This charming heritage property is now used as the law offices of co-owners Marty Johnson and lawyer Marc Whittemore.

Building Style
The Heritage Law Group building (J.W. Jones House) was built larger than surrounding homes, attesting to the success of the first owner. The original Queen Anne styling of this two-storey, hipped-roof classic 'foursquare', boasts a circular front-pillared veranda which extends around the west side of the house. The asymmetric east wing has an outside staircase leading to the second floor. A triangular dormer faces the street from the attic and the whole exterior is finished with narrow horizontal wood siding. Inside, the original hardwood floors have been fully restored and preserved as have several of the built-in cabinets. The original hot water radiators are still fully functional and continue to serve as the main source of heat for the building.
J.W. Jones House
The historic place is the 2.5-storey, wood-clad J.W. Jones House, built in 1912 and located at 830 Bernard Avenue in Kelowna's historic North Central neighbourhood; and a detached garage.

The J.W. Jones House has heritage value for its association with a high-profile owner who played a major role in early real estate activities and political affairs, for its fine architectural design, and for representing changes in land use on upper Bernard Avenue.

This fine residence, built in 1912 and larger than those around it, testifies to the success of its first owner, James ('Jimmy') William Jones, an important property developer, businessman, and politician (both municipal and provincial) in early Kelowna.

Jones's profile represents that of many early Kelowna businessmen. Born in Ontario in 1869, he came to Kelowna in 1907 after spending twenty years in Grenfell, Saskatchewan. He went into real estate development in partnership with Dr. W.H. Gaddes, forming a number of significant companies in the land development business, such as the Central Okanagan Land and Orchard Company and the Kelowna Irrigation Company, the latter of which developed property beyond the city center, in Rutland and Glenmore. Jones also bought shares in the McKenzie Grocery and in Thomas Lawson Ltd.

A 'go-getter', Jones soon went into civic politics. He was elected Alderman in 1910 and Mayor in 1912, serving five terms in office. In 1916 he stepped up a political level and ran as the Conservative candidate in the newly redistributed South Okanagan riding. He won, but the Conservative government under Premier W.J. Bowser was defeated, so Jones sat for twelve years on the opposition benches. When the Conservative Party won power in 1928 under S.F. Tolmie, Jones was appointed Speaker. In 1930, as the Great Depression descended on Canada, he became Finance Minister. The measures he introduced to try to stem the tide, including payroll deductions of taxes and a one-percent tax on all incomes over $25, earned him the nickname of 'One Percent Jones.' The Tolmie government disintegrated under the pressures of the Depression; in the 1933 election Jones ran as an independent and was defeated. With his political career ended, Jones moved to Victoria and went into the bond and financial business. He died there in 1954.

Jones built this large house in 1912 when he was at the peak of his local business and political careers; he also had a summer residence on Manhattan Point. The house has value for its attractive architectural design. The hipped-roof 'foursquare' form is elaborated with an open verandah on two sides and an asymmetrical wing at the rear, which, if they are original (as is likely), would be considered to be features of the picturesque Queen Anne style.

The Jones house is representative of changing land uses along upper Bernard Avenue. Like many other large houses in the area, it was divided up in the 1940s, when housing was in short supply (to a large extent because of World War II), the neighbourhood no longer attracted blue-chip residents, and domestic servants became unavailable. It was converted to multiple-residential use in 1942, at which time a staircase was added on one side and additions were made at the rear. It was again adapted, in 2001, to become a law office, reflecting the current demand in the North Central neighbourhood for professional and gallery space.

- Two-storey hipped-roof 'foursquare' house; the square form elaborated with a wrap-around columned verandah (across front and left sides), pedimented at the front entrance; and with a two-storey rear wing
- Ground-floor bay window protruding into porch on left side
- Pedimented dormer facing the street
- Narrow scalloped horizontal wood siding on all elevations
- Octagonal window on second floor facing street
- Numerous mature trees and shrubs, and large lawn all around
From the Kelowna Heritage Register
Photo goes Here
Type of Marker: Cultural

Type of Sign: Historic Site or Building Marker

Describe the parking that is available nearby: Street parking is available at the building, as is parking in the alley behind.

What Agency placed the marker?: City of Kelowna

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