The Gillespie/Ballard House is a two-and-a-half-storey saltbox house located overlooking the Southwest Arm of Fortune Harbour, NL. The designation is confined to the footprint of the house.
Statement of Significance
Formal Recognition Type
Registered Heritage Structure
The Gillespie/Ballard House was designated a Registered Heritage Structure by The Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador in 2021 due to its historic, aesthetic and cultural value.
The Gillespie/Ballard House was likely built for the Gillespie family between 1830, when the first Gillespie (Mary Gilasby) was recorded in Fortune Harbour, and 1850. The Gillespies were among the first families to settle the community in the early 19th century. By the time of the 1921 census there were seven Gillespie households in Fortune Harbour. In the 1960s the house was purchased by Agnes “Nellie” Pierce Ballard, a native of the now-abandoned community of Fleury’s Bight, and has remained in the Ballard family for three generations.
The Gillespie/Ballard House is an excellent surviving example of the “second generation” saltbox style as described by David Mills. Houses of this type resemble earlier saltboxes in form but are generally larger in both footprint and height. The Gillespie/Ballard House, for instance, stands a full two-and-a-half-storeys tall with an extra structural bay on the right side of the house, resulting in an asymmetrical façade. On the rear a continuous roof slope descends from the peak to a one-storey linney. While the house’s trim is mostly plain, it does exhibit bargeboard or “gingerbread” trim on the gable ends as well as a large raincap above its substantial front door.
The Gillespie/Ballard House is representative of a traditional way of life in Newfoundland and Labrador. Its location, just feet from the shoreline, emphasizes the dependent relationship settlers had with the ocean. Early Gillespies were planters and fishers and their house reflects the conditions in which they and many others would have lived.
Source: Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador property file “Fortune Harbour – Gillespie/Ballard House – FPT NL-5331”
Character Defining Elements
All original features of the house which relate to the age and style including:
-two-and-a-half-storey main house with one-storey linney;
-size, style and location of linney on rear façade;
-size, style and location of porch attached to linney;
-steep, asymmetrical gable roof with continuous rear slope;
-wood bargeboard trim on the gable ends;
-traditional chimney style and placement;
-asymmetrical, four-bay facade;
-narrow wood clapboard and plain wood trim;
-size, style, trim and placement of wooden windows;
-2/2 wood sash windows on front facade;
-3/6 and fixed six-pane wood sash windows on the end walls;
-raincaps over windows;
-size, style, trim and placement of exterior wooden doors;
-main entrance wood door with four panels and a three-pane window;
-large raincap over main door, and;
-dimension, location and orientation of building on the property and in relation to the water.
Location and History
1830 - 1850
Rectangular Long Facade