Historical Plaque Properties


Allan McPhee - Carpenter
207 Queen Street
Stratford, ON

Allan McPhee was born on Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia in 1820. He was the son of Donald and Anne McPhee who emigrated from Scotland a few years before Allan’s birth. The family had moved to North Easthope by the time the 1851 census was taken. Although Donald was farming there, within a few years the family moved to Stratford.

Allan McPhee married Mary Elizabeth Cameron in St. Joseph’s Church in 1854. Allan and his brother, Andrew, were employed as carpenters. In 1856 Allan and Mary’s first child, a daughter, Catherine, was born. They would eventually become the parents of three girls and two boys. Records of their baptisms are in St. Joseph’s early parish books.

According to the Stratford assessment records, lots 305 and 306, comprising 2/5 acres were bought by Mary Cameron McPhee in 1872. The land was valued at $50. Over the next two years it appears that Allan was building the house as the value on the property increased from $50 to $250 and in 1874 upon completion, $325. The owner of the house was listed as Allan McPhee.

In 1874 there were eight occupants of the house which included Allan, Mary, their five children and possibly Mary’s elderly father. Although the McPhees were living in town, they owned two cows and a pig as did many of the early residents of Stratford. One duty of the first town constable was to keep pigs and cows off the main street.

The McPhee family remained in the house until 1880 when they sold it to Dr. J.A. Robertson. Possibly the early days of living on the farm in North Easthope, or just a desire for a new life, prompted their move to the Township of Muskoka where Allan was enumerated as a farmer in the 1881 census.

Four years later, Allan died of consumption at the age of sixty-five. Mary moved into the town of Bracebridge where she lived until her death in 1902.