Former Summerside Post Office - Summerside, PE
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member T0SHEA
N 46° 23.594 W 063° 47.453
20T E 439195 N 5138043
For many years the main post office in Summerside, this old building now serves the city as part of the town hall.
Waymark Code: WMY62Q
Location: Prince Edward Island, Canada
Date Posted: 04/28/2018
Published By:Groundspeak Regular Member Bon Echo
Views: 4

This old brick federal building, built beginning in 1883, is an interesting looking edifice and a bit difficult to describe. The gable end above the front façade is false, with a steeply pitched roof and the clock tower rising behind it. The four faced clock in the tower is protected by flat topped dormer style roofs, while other hip roofed dormers appear almost randomly on the roof.

The two front entrances are graced with beautifully decorated terra cotta semi-circular transoms. Thomas Fuller, its architect, had nothing if not style and panache. The building was recognized as a National Historic Site of Canada on June 13, 1983.

The original building was much smaller than the present building, with a sympathetic addition having been made sometime in the recent past to accommodate the present city hall. Careful examination will reveal the distinction between the older and the newer bricks on the building.


This structure, built 1883-1887, was designed under the direction of Thomas Fuller who served as Chief Architect of the Department of Public Works from 1881 to 1896. This basic design with a double entrance, steep roof, high central gable, medieval detail and colourful blend of brick and stone, was adapted to many smail post offices across the country. Each was unique but they shared a strong family resemblance that came to symbolize the federal presence throughout Canada. The Summerside Post Office shows the high quality of design maintained under Fuller's tenure.
The Former Summerside Post Office is a two-and-a-half-storey, brick building constructed between 1883 and 1887. The formal recognition consists of the building on the legal property on which it sat at the time of recognition.

The Former Summerside Post Office was designated a national historic site because: it is representative of small urban post offices designed by Thomas Fuller; it possesses architectural merit, this is to say it has not undergone major exterior alteration; and it possesses integrity, that is to say that its siting is sympathetic. The Former Summerside Post Office is a good example of the post offices erected by the Department of Public Works in smaller urban centres during Thomas Fuller's term as Chief Architect (1881-1886). It is representative of Fuller post offices in its two-and-a-half-storey height, its use of high-quality materials, its blend of Gothic and Romanesque elements, and its prominent siting on a corner lot.
Sources: Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, Minute, 1983; Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, Plaque Text, 1988.

Key elements which define the heritage character of the Summerside Post Office include:
- its blend of Gothic and Romanesque elements, evident in: the steep roof; high central gable; and round-arched voussoirs over door openings,
- features typical of Fuller-designed buildings, including its: two-and-a-half-storey height; steep roof; round-arched double entrances; and the underlying symmetry of its facade,
- its three-bay façade with two flanking entrances,
- its steeply pitched roof and lively roofline, consisting of a hip roof with adjoining hips over adjoining wings, intersected by a large cross-gable, and punctuated by hip-roofed dormers,
- its picturesque silhouette created by the interplay between the elevations, frontispiece, gables and roof lines,
- the strong, vertical emphasis created by the chimney, the steeply pitched roof and the central façade gable,
- the patterning of red-brick cladding with sandstone accents,
- its high-quality exterior materials, consisting of red brick with sandstone trim,
- its clock tower and four-dial clock,
- its prominent siting on a corner lot.
From Historic Places Canada
URL of Page from Heritage Register: [Web Link]

Site's Own URL: [Web Link]

Address of site:
275 Fitzroy Street Summerside, PEI Canada C1N 1H9

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Trail Blaisers visited Former Summerside Post Office - Summerside, PE 05/14/2018 Trail Blaisers visited it