A Community History
Moved and transformed several times over the intervening 150
years, the tollkeeper's cottage -
minus its front porch and rear addition - was "discovered" in 1993 on a residential site on upper Howland Ave
. that was slated for redevelopment. A neighbour (Kulle Milles), who fortunately knew something of the cottage's history, contacted the Community History Project to advise that a rare extant tollkeeper's cottage was in danger.
The report was at first met with some scepticism - surely such a rare building couldn't still be around! But CHP decided to investigate, and over the next three years the more they researched the clearer it became that the neighbour was right! The previous owners also confirmed the report.
The accompanying photo shows the Cottage "as discovered", hidden under layers of siding and other changes added over the years. The small window is the original "tollkeeper's window" from the mid-1800's.
The Cottage is of a very rare vertical plank construction, a style used for a short period in the early 1800's. It's believed to be the only early tollhouse still surviving anywhere in Canada.