Vienna has experienced both fires and floods since its founding in 1830 through a survey into lots by Mahlon Burwell. It has still managed to maintain buildings of architectural interest from the Classical Revival to the Gothic Revival. Visitors will be able to tour the exterior of these buildings and experience the Vienna/Edison history exhibits at the Family Table.
The most recent flood occurred just this past winter. A more serious one took place in April of 1937 when two dams broke upriver on the Otter resulting in water 25 feet above normal.
Vienna’s early prosperity was based on the great pine forests that grew in Bayham, some remnants of which persist. By 1852 it had a population of 1,200. Samuel Edison, grandfather of Thomas Alva Edison, was one of the early residents. Samuel was a Loyalist from New Jersey who settled in Vienna in 1811. Henry Ford later moved this Edison Homestead to Greenfield Village in Dearborn, Michigan, due to his association and friendship with Thomas
Alva Edison, the famous inventor.
For tickets and information: please email firstname.lastname@example.org or 519-403-5655 or 519-633-4203 or 519-764-2384. Tickets are $10 or $8 for BHS and ACO members. Please meet at Memorial Park’s pavilion where tickets and information will be available.
Almost 100 attended the annual ACO Heritage Awards on May 17 to celebrate nine worthy heritage projects. Thanks to the Elgin Theatre Guild for use of their fine theatre, the Princess Ave Playhouse (a previous heritage award winner).
Here's the full program ...
2017 Award Winners
The 2017 ACO Heritage Awards will be presented to nine individuals and organizations that have demonstrated the value of conserving our built and natural heritage.
The Heritage Awards are presented annually by the St. Thomas-Elgin Branch of the Architectural Conservancy of Ontario. This year’s awards, the fifth in the series, will be given to recipients at a special ceremony on Wednesday, May 17 beginning at 7 pm at the Princess Avenue Playhouse in St. Thomas.
Recipients this year are from every part of St. Thomas and Elgin County and include both private buildings and public institutions. Two awards will be given for achievements in heritage education and awareness.
Judges reviewed nominations in three basic categories: Individuals or organizations in the fields of education, awareness and advocacy; heritage practitioners such as architects, craftsmen and builders; built heritage conservation of either an entire building or specific heritage features.
Judges noted that three of the properties are on Talbot Street in St. Thomas, a positive sign that heritage conservation is seen as an important part of rebuilding the downtown core.
The St. Thomas-Elgin branch of the Architectural Conservancy Ontario was founded in April 2009 very much out of the ashes of Alma College, the renowned private girls school that was the city's crowning heritage jewel. The college was a victim of arson following years of neglect by its owners and inaction by various levels of government.
The branch holds its annual ceremony to celebrate good practice of architectural preservation from across Elgin County and within the City of St. Thomas. Speakers and tours on topics related to preservation of architectural heritage are also held throughout the year.
ACO St. Thomas-Elgin Branch 2017 Heritage Award Winners
Built Heritage Conservation - Entire Building
For more information contact Serge Lavoie, awards coordinator, at 519-859-7763 or at email@example.com.
The Architectural Conservancy of Ontario – St. Thomas-Elgin Branch, is sponsoring an historic walk of the hamlet of Iona. The walk begins at the Iona Hall, 8851 Iona Road.
The walk includes the 1888 Lumley & Co. General Store, the 1862 Iona Hall, the 1853 William Harris House, and the 1874 former Iona Methodist Church. There’s an optional visit to the Southwold Earthworks, site of a 15th century Attawandaron village.
In this Doors Open style event, visitors have the opportunity to experience the interiors of these buildings. The Lumley & Co. Store contains an Arts & Crafts style apartment that is now operated as a bed and breakfast. This Moorish Revival building with Italianate windows, features polychrome brick detailing. The brickwork has been recently restored.
The owner of this building received a restoration award from the Architectural Conservancy of Ontario, St. Thomas-Elgin Branch on May 17.
The William Harris House, a Classical Revival building, was Iona’s first post office. It has two classical front doors, one of which accesses the former post office. The grounds have been naturalized with wetlands, pond, and a Carolinian forest area.
The Iona Hall was built in a Classical Revival style and first served as a Freewill Baptist Church. It later became a community hall and still, 155 years later, serves that purpose. This building has also been the recipient of an ACO architectural preservation award.
The Iona Methodist Church became part of the United Church in 1925 and now, since 1966, operates as the Christian Fellowship Church. The church interior contains an intricately constructed varnished tongue and groove ceiling. Tea, coffee and desserts are available at the church.
Tickets: $10 ACO members; $15 non-members
Venue: starts at Iona Hall
Address: 8851 Iona Rd
Contact Phone: Laurence, 519-764-2384 or Carl, 519-633-5972