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Key Number: HS 18915
Site Name: Harold Person Homestead
Other Names:
Site Type: 0101 - Residential: Single Dwelling
0501 - Farming and Ranching: Farm or Ranch House


ATS Legal Description:
Twp Rge Mer
49 20 4

Address: 3 miles E of Hay Lakes
Near Town: Hay Lakes


Type Number Date View


Plan Shape: Rectangular
Storeys: Storeys: 1 1/2
Superstructure: Horizontal Finished Log
Superstructure Cover:
Roof Structure: High Gable
Roof Cover:
Exterior Codes:
Exterior: Style: Swedish log Structure: Logs were scribed to fit tightly together, then planed with an adz to make flat walls, no overlap at corners.
The Person Homestead includes a one and a half storey log structure constructed in 1905. The logs used have been squared.
Interior: N/A
Environment: Has been moved north from its original location. The entire farm is immaculate. Located in a rural area three miles west of Hay Lakes. What efforts may have been made in the past to landscape the site have been obliterated by the growth of the surrounding forest which has reclaimed much of the area originally cleared to make way for the construction of the house.
Condition: Poor. 12 AUG 1986. Due to years of neglect and no maintenance the overall condition of the cabin is poor.
Alterations: The exterior and interior have undergone very little in the way of way of changes. Originality in design and original fabric content can be put at 85-90 %.


Construction: Construction Date:
Usage: Usage Date:
Owner: Owner Date:
Harold Person
Alver Person & Arlene Person
Architect: N/A
Builder: Harold Person
Craftsman: N/A
History: Harold and Martha Person came from Sweden in 1905. Their son, Johan Person took over the farm, then his sons, Algot and Albin took over.
Albin retired in 1980 and brother Alven bought his partnership. The original log house hasn't been used for years. In the farm yard there is a large house. Dating, to the 1930s and a more recent bungalow.

Its possible that the farm will go for a 4th generation of the Person family.
There are other buildings in the yard that could be quite old. [1986]
* * *
Historical Significance:
Harold Person was born in 1865 in the small community of Skansholm in Northern Sweden. In 1905 he emigrated to Alberta with his wife and family. The local history which provides an account of his life does not indicate that the family spent any time in the United States before arriving in Alberta, which was a common pattern for most but not all Scandinavian immigrants at this time. In July, 1905 he filed for a homestead on the North West Quarter of Section 6, Township 49, Range 20 West of the fourth meridian. This location placed him south of Miquelon Lakes and east of the present town of Hay Lakes. This area was referred to at this time as the Lundemo district after the Post Office and General Store established by Norwegian settler John Waldum and which was located approximately three miles south of the Person homestead. By September he had taken up residence on the quarter section and had begun the construction of a house. He 'proved' up on his homestead and received title to the property in 1910.

Person was one of a large influx of Scandinavian settlers into the Camrose area during the expansion of the settlement process between the 1890s and World War I. The popularity of the Camrose area for Scandinavian immigrants can be attributed in part to the role of Canadian government immigration agents, in particular Carl O. Swanson.

He conducted many Scandinavian immigrants to Wetaskiwin and assisted them in many ways in locating nearby homesteads. One of the Harold Person's principal community involvement was with the Wilhelmina Lutheran Church. He was elected to the first board of administration when it was formed in November 1908. After the site had been chosen, Harold Person was a member of the committee which supervised the preparation of the site and the construction of the church. He continued to be involved in various aspects of church activity including caretaking.

Person occupied his original homestead cabin until he died in 1936. The property subsequently remained with the family. The Harold Person homestead therefore reflects settlement and community development patterns of the dominant ethnic group that occupied Camrose area between 1896 and 1914. His participation in the early activities of Wilhelmina Lutheran Church also represents a common concern for church establishment in early Alberta communities.

Architectural Significance:
The Person log residence reflects both Scandinavian and North American patterns of design and construction with the latter influence the most pronounced. Its construction technique displays the general style of North American wood construction rather than specifically Scandinavian traditions.

North American log structures tended to be square or rectangular one-unit buildings made of roughly fitted logs, chinked with mud or plaster and fitted at the corners with saddle, V-notching, half-dovetail and dovetail joints which are cut off flush at right angles. The more traditional types of Scandinavian wood structures are large and made of closely fitted and shaped logs, having double saddle-notched corners with the log ends protruding from the joints.

The logs were trimmed so as to eliminate the need for chinking. The shaping of the logs to avoid the need for chinking is evident in the Person Cabin. The Person Cabin therefore is expressly not an example of tongue and groove (Post on Sill) construction as indicated in the preliminary screening assessment, but is rather an example of an alternative log construction technique widely employed throughout North America during the settlement process.


Status: Status Date:
Designation Status: Designation Date:
Record Information: Record Information Date:
K. Williams 1989/09/11


Alberta Register of Historic Places: 4665-0666
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