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Fairbairn House, Wakefield: Making Great Strides

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--March 10, 2011.

Thanks to the determination of a committed core of volunteers, the ambitious project to transform the historic Fairbairn House in Wakefield into a museum and heritage centre, in the works for several years now, is closer than ever to fruition.

larger_fairbairn.6.jpgThe house, which was built around 1860 by Scottish pioneer and mill owner William Fairbairn, was badly neglected and threatened with demolition when it was acquired by the municipality and eventually moved to its present location.

During a recent visit by QAHN to Wakefield, Fairbairn's co-president, Michael Cooper, gave us a tour of the old house, now in its new setting overlooking the majestic Gatineau River.

Cooper described the various phases of the project as it has evolved over the past few years. He spoke of the efforts, still ongoing, to raise the thousands of dollars within this little community that are still needed to complete the project.

He described the preparation of the new site for the house on the east side of the river, and the pouring of a new foundation; the transportation of the building from its former location on the west side of the Gatineau River to its new home on the east side, near the covered bridge and adjacent to Hendrick Park; and the recent complete restoration of the exterior of the house.

"The house had about six inches of clearance when it passed under the electrical wires during the move across the river," Cooper laughed. "But it was sure something to see!"

For the complete article, visit Outaouais Heritage WebMagazine. Click here!