Whether you are visiting North Hatley for the first time or you are returning to our charming village we invite you to take some time and venture on a self guided tour of North Hatley. As you walk around the North Hatley, you will learn more about the village’s rich history, admire beautiful houses and picturesque scenery.
A Brief History of North Hatley
Situated at the outlet of Lake Massawippi, an Indian name which means “deep waters”, North Hatley was originally named “The Outlet”. This area in Hatley Township was first inhabited by the native peoples of the Abenakis Nation valley who hunted, fished and held ceremonies in the area and later also traded with settlers. In 1792, after the area was opened for settlement by Lieutenant-Governor Alured Clarke Ebenezer Hovey, a militia Captain from Connecticut arrived in the area and became the first white settler to see Lake Massawippi. Hovey travelled to Quebec City where he met Colonel Henry Cull; together they petitioned the Crown for a grant of land which they received with a Company of Associates on March 25, 1803; this tract was surveyed and named “Hatley” for a town in England.
From 1792 until 1803 there were several New England families (mostly squatters) who had settled in the area; these included the family of Ephraim Wadleigh, who bought a large lot in the northern end of Hatley Township. Here his son Taylor Wadleigh became the first settler to build a house in The Outlet, circa 1828. By 1896 there was a post office, mills, stores, a school and a small collection of dwellings in the village. In 1886 Dr. and Mrs, Powhatan Clarke of Baltimore visited North Hatley and soon other Americans arrived, helping to turn the village into a tourist location with cottages, boarding houses and inns which contributed to the growth of the village. In 1897 the village was incorporated and set aside as North Hatley. The village’s Centennial was celebrated in 1997.
The East Side of the Lake
- Dreamland Park (coin Main & Capelton) – This park represents the centre of North Hatley. In 1920 J.B. LeBaron, together with his sisters, purchased the area and created a park where there was a beach, a bandstand for concerts led by bandleader Henry Turcotte, and benches for quiet moments. The old bandstand was demolished and replaced with a new one by the Scowen family; the first concert volunteer group Massawippi Bandstand took place on August 25, 1993. In April of that year, the local volunteer group Massawippi Vision began construction of a promenade with a gazebo at the end, where the old railroad tracks had run. It was designed by Hubert Vallee.
- Au Grenier de Gife (The Old “Shetland Shop”) (330 de la Riviere) – Built at the end of the 19th century, at one time this building was used by Dr. Edgar as a small hospital. The building is in the Queen Anne architectural style.
- Auberge La Chocolatiere (312 de la Riviere) – Built in the early 1900s, this structure has housed a butcher shop, a hardware store, a clothing boutique, a bakery/tea shop and now, with the addition of another floor to the structure, an inn.
- The Pomegranate (617 Sherbrooke) – Built circa 1870, this attractive red building was originally a general store. It is presently an antique, collectables and art boutique.
- The Flying Shuttle (635 Sherbrooke) – In the 1930s and 1940s this was a boarding house known as the “Cum Inn”. Following this, it became a shop for woven goods created by women of the village, hence the name “Flying Shuttle”.
- The Merrill Farmhouse (680 Sherbrooke) – Built in the early 1900s, this was the location of Dr. C.J. Edgar’s office in 1907. The Merrill Park subdivision of North Hatley rests on land once part of the Merrill farm.
- Barnabas Church (640 Sherbrooke) – The church was built in 1894 at a cost of about $1,300.00, and was heated with a wood-burning furnace (wood cost $1.75 a cord at the time). The cedar shingle covering is original, as are the stained glass windows. Bertram Goodhue, who later participated in the design of the cathedral of St – John the Divine of New York, was the architect of the Church.
- The York House (130 School) – Built in 1910 as the rectory for St. Barnabas Church, the building was sold in 1927 and became part of the Connaught Inn as it was too expensive to maintain as the rectory.
- Union Building site (School) – North Hatley’s first church was built on this site in 1871; it was destroyed by fire in 1904. A community centre replaced the church building; it was destroyed by fire in 1974. From 1974 to 2011, this was the site of the oldest continuing farmer’s market in the Eastern Township. The Farmer’s market has since then moved to River Park. The site is presently vacant.
- Le Coeur d’Or (85 school) – This structure was built by Dr. C.J. Edgar about 1900, and was rented as apartments; it was known at the time as the “Patricia”. It later served as the postmaster’s home, and also as part of the Connaught Inn. Today, it serves as an inn and restaurant.
- The Library (165 Main) – This building, designed as a library by Mr. A. Eidlitz of Boston, was erected in 1904 on land donated by Benjamin LeBaron. A major expansion and renovation occurred in 1986. Today, it is a bilingual institution. Art exhibits are held there during summer.
- The Unitarian-Universalist Church (35 Gagnon) – The North Hatley Universalist Congregation was legally constituted in 1886; the church building came into being in 1895. The land for both the church and parsonage next door (beside the Library) was donated by Benjamin LeBaron. In 1961 the Unitarian and Universalist denominations merged, and the First Universalist Church of North Hatley became the Unitarian-Universalist Church.
- La Cornemuse/Sunsetview Tea House (1044 Massawippi) – Built circa 1909 by Dudley Conner, “Sunsetview” was known by that name for many years. At one time it was owned by john McKay who also owned the Pleasant View Hotel. Sunsetview has been a boarding house, an apartment building, and since 1986, a bed and breakfast, now under a new name “La Cornemuse”.
- La Raveaudiere (11 Hatley Centre) – This mid-19th century farmhouse, renovated and enlarged with the addition of another floor, is now a charming Inn establishment.
- The Scowen House (2125 du Lac) – This charming house is set in a large property and surrounded by mature birch trees. The Scowen family has played a significant role in the history and development of North Hatley.
- The Beach Pavilion (2070 du Lac) – In 1937, the Club House from the Hurry and Atkinson Golf Club was moved across the lake during winter to where it now stands as the Beach Pavilion and became the Pleasant View Boat Club House. In the mid-1960’s it became the nucleus of the P.V. Recreation Club facilities which later became the North Hatley Recreational Society.
- The Old Train Station/Old Town Hall (210 Main) – This building, erected about 1870 was once the village’s station for the Boston & Maine Railroad, and until the early 1990’s, North Hatley’s town offices. The ticket window can still be seen at the rear of the building facing the tracks. Today, it is a private home.
- The North Hatley Club (170 Main) – A private club, nicknamed the American Club, this building was erected in 1897 as the North Canoe Club. The dock was built in 1910, as was a tennis court. The North Hatley Club held in the past regattas and tennis tournaments. Quiet during World War II, it was refurbished in the 1980s and celebrated its centennial in 1997.
- Lobadanaki Park (Main) – This park was created in a space near the federal wharf during the Centennial Year (1997) to acknowledge the heritage of the native peoples in the North Hatley area. It was dedicated with the presence of several descendants of the original natives who consecrated the land with drumming and dancing.
- Memorial Park (Main) – This site was originally a blacksmith’s shop, the site of the first LeBaron’s store and the Johnson apartment blocks, all destroyed by fire. After World War I Mr. & Mrs. Henry M. Atkinson restored it to a park which they donated to the town as a memorial to their son, who was lost in action in World War I; the park was dedicated July 1, 1925. A memorial service is held every Remembrance Day to honour those who died in the Korean and two World Wars.
- The Emporium (100 Main) – Built in 1912, this structure has been known for years as the Tin Building. It once housed the hairdresser/barber shop/post office, with apartments upstairs, and is now an antique and gift shop, with a gallery dedicated to naïve art located on the second floor.
- The Bank Building (88 Main) – Built in 1907 as a branch of the Eastern Townships bank, it became a branch of the CIBC in 1961. The upstairs housed the Town Hall and Eastern Townships Telephone switchboard for many years. The CIBC bank closed and moved in 2002 and the building now houses a clothing and gift shop with a café and art gallery on the upper floor.
- LeBaron’s Store (105 Main) – The store was begun by Jean Brant LeBaron in a small wooden building in 1888. That building was replaced by the present brick building in 1897. It later housed North Hatley’s first telephone exchange and first library, and is still operated by members of the LeBaron family.
- Alexandra House (97 Main) – Built circa 1900 by Dr. C.J. Edgar and originally called the “Alexandra” after a member of the British Royal Family.
- The Connaught Home (77 Main) – Built in 1901 as a hospital by Dr. C.J. Edgar, North Hatley’s first mayor, this building was also used as a hotel and in later years became a private senior’s home under the supervision of Dr. J. Klinck. The architectural style is Victorian, with neo-Greek accents.
The West Side of the Lake
- The Marina (240 Mill) – Boating and boat building have always been an important part of North Hatley’s history, as can be seen on the Village’s crest which has a sailing boat. The Marina is built on the site o F.W. Woodard Boat Shop which used to build and repair wooden launches and runabouts with inboard motors.
- The Mill (225 Mill) – Built in 1904 by J.B. Reed as a grist mill, supplying feed and grain to local farmers, this building was also owned by his son Ronald Reed. It later became a restaurant presently known as the Picalili.
- The Pilsen Pub and Restaurant (55 Main) – Built in the early 1900s by Albert Hamm for his carriage shop, it was later converted into a successful hardware store. During the 1980s the building was restored and became a restaurant and micro-brewery. The brewer moved during the 1990s.
- Inter-Faith Church (coin main & Capelton) – This was North Hatley’s first schoolhouse, originally located in Dreamland Park. Built in 1895, it was moved to its present location in 2897. The site was once used by local Indians in early spring and fall while they traded with the settlers. The building was purchased by the Baptist congregation in 1908, became a United Church in 1959, and officially the United Church of North Hatley in 1993. In 2010, The United Church ceased to use for its purpose and sold the building and land to the Inter-Faith Church.
- Elisabeth Church (3115 Capelton) – In 1900 a chapel was built on a site at the intersection of chemin de Lac and Massawippi Street; that building was consecrated on September 23, 1900. The present St. Elisabeth Church was built in 1913 and consecrated on July 23 of the same year by Mgr. LaRocque. An extension has recently been added.
- Wadleigh House #1 (3005 Capelton) – This small frame house, originally painted red, was built by Taylor Wadleigh about 1830 for his sisters.
- Wadleigh House #2 (4000 Magog) – This was the first frame house in the village centre, built by Taylor Wadleigh about 1828; it was originally insulated with mud. Over the years, it has been substantially expanded and remodelled.
- The Pollock House (4040 Magog) – An excellent example of many of the houses built as residences during the early 1900s.
- Cedar Gables (4080 Magog) – A Mrs. Harrison from Maryland bought this land from G.A. LeBaron and built a cottage. Over the years it was winterized and was later known as the Miller Hall House. The granite for the walls at the front and sides of the property was brought by rail from Nova Scotia.
- “Acacia Acres” (4230 Magog) – perched part way up the hill, this house was originally intended as a Roman Catholic Church. When costs became excessive, the project was abandoned, and the building was eventually completed as a private home.
- The Cull House (550 Hovey) – The oldest house in North Hatley, built circa 1810 by Colonel Hebry Cull, one of the founders of Hatley Township and a large landowner on the lake. At one time it was a prosperous farm.
- Manoir Hovey (575 Hovey) – Built prior to 1900 by harry Atkinson of Atlanta, Georgia to resemble George Washington’s home at Mount Vernon and once famous for the summer garden parties, hosted by Mr. and Mrs. Atkinson. At one time it was the “10th hole” for the private golf course which existed on the west side of the lake. Now a well-known inn named for Hatley Township founder and pioneer Ebenezer Hovey. It is a member of the prestigious association of Relais & Chateaux.
- The Piggery Theater (215 Simard) – Originally constructed to house pigs, it was converted to a play house and opened as a theatre in 1965. It is Quebec’s longest running English language theatre.
- Capelton Mines (800 Capelton) – In 1863, the Capelton and Albert Mines open while Eustis’s mine only opens in 1865. The exploitation of these three mines will play an important role in the development of the region of North Hatley. The mines are closed in 1939 but are re-opened to the public in 1995 thanks to the Vallieres-Langlois family who want to share its historic value through organized visit of the Capelton Mine.
We hope you will enjoy your upcoming stay in North Hatley. Feel free to let us know if you have any questions about the village, your itinerary or travel suggestions.
Iryna and Mykola