Guisachan House - Kelowna, BC
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member T0SHEA
N 49° 52.252 W 119° 28.637
11U E 321994 N 5527216
The Guisachan House, built in 1891, is in Guisachan Heritage Park at 1060 Cameron Avenue, just west of Gordon Drive and south of Guisachan Road.
Waymark Code: WMH50F
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Date Posted: 05/23/2013
Published By:Groundspeak Regular Member Dunbar Loop
Views: 4

In 1890, before he became Governor-General, Lord Aberdeen purchased a 480 acre ranch in what is now southern Kelowna. In 1891 the Aberdeens visited the property and began construction of the house. Lady Aberdeen named it 'Guisachan' ('Place of the Fir' in Gaelic) after her childhood home in the Scottish Highlands. They later planted 200 acres of orchard, but interest in the property waned after purchasing the Coldstream Ranch, which is east of Vernon, in 1892.

BTW - the tree lined lane on this property is haunted by a phantom horse and carriage.

From Kelowna's Heritage Register.

The Guisachan House is also a reminder of the importance of agriculture in the development of Kelowna. The ranch was sold around 1900 to John Conlin, a former sea captain. Conlin sold it in turn in 1903 to W.C. Cameron, who had been manager of the 20,000-acre Edgeley Farm at Qu'Appelle, Northwest Territories (now Saskatchewan). Cameron concentrated on growing fruit and hay, and was president of the Kelowna Farmers' Exchange at the time of his death in 1910. Cameron's sons, W. Alister and Gilbert Douglas ('Paddy'), then jointly operated the ranch, growing mixed crops and livestock. Shortly after 1923 they split the acreage and livestock, Paddy Cameron taking the portion with this house on it. He shifted into dairy cattle, and from the 1930s until the late 1940s operated a retail dairy store in town. He then went into beef cattle until his retirement in 1965, when he sold the land but kept a life-lease on the house and seven acres.

Guisachan House is further valued as an example of community efforts in heritage conservation. Paddy Cameron was involved in local heritage efforts. He was president of the Okanagan Historical Society and was co-chair of the Pandosy Mission Committee from 1969 to 1972. He continued to reside in the Guisachan House until shortly before his death in 1984. After his death the Okanagan Historical Society adapted the house and reduced property for public use. The house and 2.4 acres of the original land are now Guisachan Park, which was opened on May 19, 1990, by the grandson of Aberdeens, Alastair Gordon, Sixth Marquess of Aberdeen, and his Marchioness, Anne Gordon. The house, with a wrap-around veranda added, now operates as Guisachan House Restaurant. This was an early and high-profile preservation project in Kelowna, and was important for raising awareness of the re-use potential of historic buildings.

The character-defining elements of the Guisachan House include:

- Location in Guisachan Park
- Landscaping and gardens
- Row of native arborvitae trees beside the driveway
- Remaining orchard trees
- Farmhouse architecture in Colonial Bungalow style, including wood siding, elaborate moulding and trim under eaves and around windows
- Wrap-around veranda

Extensive restoration work was completed in 2009 following a significant fire

Type of Marker: Cultural

Type of Sign: Historic Site or Building Marker

Describe the parking that is available nearby: Parking lot in the park

What Agency placed the marker?: City of Kelowna

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BampaFarfar visited Guisachan House - Kelowna, BC 06/09/2013 BampaFarfar visited it

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