Fern Atkey Residence

4827 Georgia Street
Delta, BC

Built: 1890

The Atkeys were far from being the original owners, but sixty years of ownership and common usage suggest that we should refer to the house as the Atkey house, rather than naming it for the original owner, Charles Clausen.

Status: Still Standing

Atkey Residence - 2014
click photo to enlarge
The house has been altered substantially over the years. Research has shown thhat the original house was built in 1890, not for Thomas McNeely, but for Charles Clausen, whose occupation in that year was shown as "shopkeeper." He may or may not have been employed by McNeely, but he probably was related to A. Clausen, turn-of-the-century watchmaker and jeweler.

From Clausen, ownership passed to A. A. McWhinnie, who was an employee of McNeely. How the came to be owned by McNeely, from whose estate George Baker bought the house and four lots in 1904, is not known. Baker had married Ursula Ott in 1903, but they lived initially in a rented house on 48th Avenue which was called Westham Street back then. They raised six children here before moving in 1922 to the large house at 4919 48th Avenue. The Alkey house was retained by the Bakers as a revenue property.

The house was rented by the Canadian Bank of Commerce to provide accommodation for its branch manager, Walter F. Granger who was the grandson of Frank Lord. The Granger family lived here until 1935.

In 1936 Fern Atkey, widowed in 1935 when her husband died of meningitis, bought the house and brought her three sons here to live. She had been a teacher in Ladner before her marriage to Melville AtKey in 1921. After her family was grown, she continued to live here with one of her sons and his family.

The substantive changes referred to earlier would be evident if a comparison could be made betweeb early and modern photographs. A full verandah used to extend acoos the fromt of the house, but at some time was replaced with a small portico in the "classical revival" style. Dormer windows were added to the second floor and an enclosed porch extends off the south wall, Changes, beyond updating plumbing and electrical wiring, have also been made to the interior.