William and Mary Ansell Residence

~4872 47A Avenue
Delta, BC

Built: 1901

At the southeast corner of 47A Avenue and 48B Street, this corner on which an apartment building now looms from its position above and back from the street, was the Ansell house. In that house were born, under the supervision more likely than not of Dr. King, a great many of Ladner's early citizens.

Status: Demolished in 1976

Ansell Residence - circa 1929
click photo to enlarge
Not that William and Mary Ansell ever owned the house. It was, in fact, owned by Alfred deRupe Taylor who had acquired the property in 1912 from the estate of his sister, Helen Cresswell, either through purchase or inheritance.

The house had been the work of her husband, Henry Cresswell, an architect, and had been erected only a year earlier in 1911. Some details of the house, such as the unusual casing around the windows and the flaring of the sides of the house below the floor plate of the upper storey, are unique and not seen elsewhere in this community. Unfortunately, it may be difficult to see these details in the photograph.

Here Mrs. Ansell operated a maternity home for local women for nearly twenty years until the late 1920s. She was widowed in 1927, and after retiring in 1929, went to live with her niece, Mrs. Arthur Parmiter. Mary Ansell's sister, Rhoda Devereaux, also ran a maternity home on Bridge Street in the village during the same period. However, the two women did not speak, for whatever reason long lost to time, with the sad result that future generations had no knowledge of or contact with each other.

The Dennisons, who were one of the owners of a shoe store in Ladner, lived here for a time in the early 1930s before moving to their property in Tsawwassen. There were also the Grahams, who ran a garage, and countless other families. Alf Graham operated a business here for some years. carrying "a full line of Tires, Tubes, Brake Lining, Automobile Accessories and Parts." The house fell to the wrecker's ball in 1976 to make way for the apartment building built later that same year.