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Copied Nov 3, 2001 from: Pre-1900 Heritage Houses - Wine Harbour
(Sherbrooke Branch Eastern Counties Regional Library – OFY 1975)


ROBERT COOPER HOUSE

This house is located off the main road that links Wine Harbour with Sonora. It overlooks the harbour. The Cooper family originally settled the property, namely Thomas Cooper, who arrived in Wine Harbour around 1836 (*1). Thomas Cooper built a log cabin down by the water and lived there with his wife. Eventually he built a frame house, believed to be the first constructed in Wine Harbour. Little is known about this first Cooper house, except that it did have a huge fireplace. Some of the timber used in the roof were thirty-eight inches wide. Thomas’ wife owned a loom and did a considerable amount of weaving. Thomas had two sons (*2).

It was Thomas Cooper (*3) who collected rent from the first gold mining company after discovery of gold in Wine Harbour. The first crusher was on this property. Robert Cooper, the brother of Thomas, lived in the Wine Harbour area. Robert also had two sons (*4). It is believed that these four sons (*5) settled on the present property. Three foundations can be found. Robert Vincent Cooper III built the one house that remains in approximately 1900. Robert Cooper was a carpenter and part-time farmer. He and his wife, Caroline had a family of ten children. Robert Cooper died in 1930 and left the house and property to his family. Robert Cooper IV, his son, visits the home often during the summer; he is the only member of the family now living in Nova Scotia(*6).

The house itself rests on a rubble foundation and has a partial basement. The framework consists of sawn beams, sawn with up and down blade. It is held together with square nails. The exterior of the house originally had wooden shingles on its sides and roof. The original wooden shingles remain on its sides. Robert Cooper IV has re-shingled the roof with cedar shingles.The interior of the house contains four rooms downstairs. The walls and ceilings are finished with plaster and the floors are constructed of spruce lumber. The kitchen was wainscotting on the lower portion of its walls. All retain their original look today. Upstairs, the walls and the ceilings are also plastered. Windows and window frames are all original, as are the doors and door frames. The stairway is also original. The summer kitchen existed at one time on the side of the building. Robert Cooper IV removed. A woodshed is built onto the rear of the house.

Originally, heat was obtained by way of three wood stoves downstairs. One wood stove is the source of heat today. Water is still retrieved by hand in buckets as it always was. The house contains two single stack brick chimneys. Electricity does not exist in the house. The eaves of the house are cornic boxed with sloped soffit and a frieze. The gable ends of the house have decorated wood shingles. The windows have entablatures as surround heads and plain trim for surround sides. Surround sills are slipsills. Green shutters are on these windows marked with the letter "C". All windows are two sash and double hung with two panes per sash.The main door is located off-center of the main façade. It has an entablature as a surround head and plain trim for surround sides. Architrave type is plain with an embrasure. The door itself is single and four paneled. Wooden piers support a one-story verandah that exists at the front of the house. Property features include one building.

My Nov 3, 2001 notations:
*1 Family research indicates he arrived in Wine Harbour between 1827-1830
*2 Thomas had four sons (Thomas, Robert Dixon, John, Paul)
*3 Possibly Thomas Cooper’s first son Thomas (Thomas Cooper died in 1864)
*4 Robert Dixon Cooper had four sons (Benjamin, Garret, Robert Vincent, John Sears)
*5 These four sons mentioned are probably Thomas sons (Thomas, Robert, John, Paul)
*6 Robert Roy Cooper IV died in 1996




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