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James Rutherford House


Other Names:

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place
The one-storey clinker brick James Rutherford House was built in 1927 as a single-storey wood frame residence. It is located on a residential street corner and occupies a single city lot in what is currently the community of Alberta Avenue in Edmonton. The municipal designation applies to the exterior of the building only, the interior is considered a non-contributing element.

Heritage Value
The James Rutherford House is significant for its clinker brick construction and its association with modest inter-war infill residential development in the former community of Norwood, in a section now known as Alberta Avenue.

The clinker brick construction of this 1927 residence contributes to its value as a historic resource. Clinker bricks had previously been discarded as waste material unsuitable for construction because they were over-fired, burnt, and misshapen. Builders in Edmonton began to use clinker bricks as early as 1913. The uneven colour and texture of the clinker brick cladding on this particular home produces an earthy texture and relatively unique appearance, as most homes in the Alberta Avenue community dating to this period employ wooden cladding. The continued presence of clinker brick structures like the James Rutherford House are important in preserving one of Edmonton’s few regional construction materials.

The historic importance of the James Rutherford House is also due to its association with modest inter-war infill residential development in Norwood. Between the First and Second World Wars development in Edmonton slowed considerably. The sparsely developed community of Norwood underwent a surprising amount of residential infill development in the inter-war years, particularly during the late 1920s and early 1930s. The James Rutherford House is a typical example of this type of infill development. These homes were popular at the time because the modest detailing, in this case the brickwork and the wooden singles in the gable end, gave the home a modicum of style which afforded the owner a sense of pride and respectability, while the small size made them affordable and easy to heat in the winter. There are many types of infill development that contributed to the character of Norwood, which by the 1950s had become a part of Alberta Avenue.

Source: City of Edmonton Planning and Development Department POSSE 83773443.

Character-Defining Elements
The heritage value of the James Rutherford House is expressed in such character-defining elements as:

- intersecting gable roof in a ‘T’ pattern;
- shed roof on the west façade;
- intersecting gable roof above the front entrance with wooden shingles in the gable end;
- understated clinker brick exterior including clinker brick rowlock course window sills and clinker brick soldier course lintels;
- extended eaves;
- clinker brick chimney; and
- pattern, style and construction of all wooden windows.


Street Address: 11701 - 96 Street NW
Community: Edmonton
Boundaries: Lot 1, Block 19, Plan RN43
Contributing Resources: Buildings: 1

ATS Legal Description:
Mer Rge Twp Sec LSD

PBL Legal Description (Cadastral Reference):
Plan Block Lot Parcel
RN 43

Latitude Longitude CDT Datum Type
53.568999 -113.489741 NAD 83

UTM Reference:
Northing Easting Zone CDT Datum Type


Recognition Authority: Local Governments (AB)
Designation Status: Municipal Historic Resource
Date of Designation: 2009/05/27

Historical Information

Built: 1927 to 1927
Significant Date(s) 1927 to 1935
Theme(s) Peopling the Land : Settlement
Historic Function(s): Residence : Single Dwelling
Current Function(s): Residence : Single Dwelling
Context: Infill development in the area during the 1920s and 1930s resulted in the expansion of existing facilities such as churches and schools, and the creation of several neighbourhood institutions such as the Parkdale and Alberta Avenue Community Leagues. By 1929, two years after the construction of this house, 118th Avenue was recognized as a prominent commercial strip and it, along with Norwood Boulevard (111th Avenue), formed the northern-most business district in Edmonton. The home’s first resident was James Rutherford, the proprietor of a nearby hardware store at 9574 118th Avenue, who lived in the home from its construction in 1927 until 1935.

Additional Information

Object Number: 4664-0222
Designation File:
Related Listing(s):
Heritage Survey File:
Website Link: http://www.edmonton.ca/city_government/planning_development/historic-resources.aspx
Data Source: POSSE File 83773443 City of Edmonton Planning and Development Department 10250 - 101 Street Edmonton AB T5J 3P4
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