Alex Fisher Residence

3691 72nd Street
Delta, BC

Built: circa 1890
 

The Alex Fisher Residence is a one and one-half storey wood-frame Frontier-style farmhouse with a saltbox roof and a wraparound verandah. Prominent from the street, it is part of an agricultural compound, located in a compatible rural context.

Status: Still Standing

Alex Fisher Residence - 2004
click photo to enlarge

Heritage Value

Built circa 1890, the Alex Fisher Residence is a rare surviving vernacular Frontier-style farmhouse, distinguished by its generous wraparound verandah and high level of integrity. Without decoration or stylistic pretension, this house represents the pragmatic spirit and austere circumstances of many of Delta's early pioneer farmers. This is a significant example of an historic Delta farmstead and a reminder of Delta's important agricultural past. Located on a major north-south road (originally known as Benson Road), this also represents the growth of population with concurrent improvements in access. By the time this house was constructed, Delta's present day road pattern was essentially complete, facilitating the transport of goods and allowing these inland farms to prosper. This was also a time when Delta's agricultural and fishing industries were reaching the peak of their early evolution.

Additionally, the heritage value of this residence lies in its association with Henry Dean Benson and the Fisher family, early Delta pioneers. It sits on land originally granted to Benson (whose own house still stands at 3610 72 Street), and appears to have been built as a rental property prior to the early subdivision of his land. Alex Fisher acquired the land in 1907; the house was later occupied by his son, Victor Fisher.

Character-Defining Elements

Key elements that define the heritage character of the Alex Fisher Residence include its:

  • setting within a rural context, in an area of similar farmsteads
  • residential form, scale and massing expressed by its one and one-half storey height, with crawlspace and regular, symmetrical plan
  • saltbox roof, with broken pitch at rear, extending over the rear extension to the house
  • wood-frame construction as expressed by wooden drop siding and cornerboards, with cedar shingle cladding in the gable ends
  • exterior elements such as its wraparound verandah with square wooden columns; closed eaves; a projecting square bay to the south on the ground floor; internal brick chimney; and simple wooden window surrounds with crown moulding and sills
  • asymmetrical fenestration, including double-hung 2-over-2 wooden-sash windows with horns
  • associated landscape features such as its grassed front yard with mature maple and other deciduous trees, and deciduous hedgerow on the side