This unusual house that has both prairie style and gothic revival architectural charactertistics is over a century old, and was built in 1913 for the politician Alexander Johnston (1867-1951).
Johnston began his career as a journalist but was first elected to the House of Commons as a Liberal in 1900, re-elected in 1904, and was defeated in 1908.
From 1910 to 1931 he was the Deputy Minister of Marine and Fisheries. responsible partly for the Dominion Fisheries Museum located near Queen and O’ Connor,
and he was also a representative at the International Radio Conference in Washington in 1927 and in London in 1929. He is in this group somewhere from the 1927 conference.
When he retired there was this story from the Montreal Gazette.
He lived in this house until his death in 1951, and his widow lived on here until the 1960s.
Yes, it looks like I’m going back in time here, instead of the other way round…! Here are some shots of the Clemow Avenue in the time period between 1905 and 1920. The first, which were published in a 1909-1910 Ottawa Improvement Commission annual report, shows the section, still unbuilt, ca. 1908 or so, in Central Park just west of O’Connor:
Here’s another of the section of Clemow near the intersection with Lyon, ca. 1910:
This image,likely taken by the Topley Studio, is somewhere on Clemow west of Bank, ca. 1914:
The second last image was taken in ca. winter 1920 by the federal Department of the Interior, shows Clemow looking west from Bank Street:
And the last image is looking from O’Connor Street along Clemow toward Bank Street, ca. 1920s:
The images above show Clemow Avenue in all its glory! The first image shows the street looking east from just west of the intersection with Percy Street, taken some time during the 1930s! The second image shows the street looking west from the same intersection, likely sometime during the 1920s. Notice how well-manicured the street looked. By this time, most homes here would have been about 15-20 years old.
Photos are courtesy of National Capital Commission Library.
Here is what Clemow Avenue looked like in the winter of 1948, as seen here as part of an illustration for the Greber Report. (Click on images, courtesy of Greber Report and National Capital Commission photo library, for larger view).
And here is what the street looked like in the summer of 1948, with the same trees with leaves on them: