Inside Beaconsfield House
For a few Canadian dollars we went on a fascinating tour of the house.
We discovered that the cost to build the house in today’s money was staggering. The first owners, the Peakes, had been some of the wealthiest people on the island. She had been the daughter of the Governor and her husband a prominent ship builder. The house must of been sad as they lost children to illness long before while they lived there then his business collapsed. The switch from sailing ships to steam and metal ships was his downfall.
The banks had called in all his loans and repossessed the house. Her father bought them a small house in a less expensive part of the city before he disowned them. She eventually became a maid to make ends meet and he became a barman out West and eventually died at age 53.
The next owner bought the house for a song from the bank and lived there with his two sisters. They left the house to the state and it became a home for female students. The majority of the contents had been disposed of and the museum has been buying period furniture and even some of the lost original furniture.
The staircase was illuminated by this window.
The bedrooms had been filled with period furniture.
We went to the top floor to see the large servants area and then climbed to the observatory right at the top of the house.
This gave clear views across to the harbour entrance.
Across West Street we could see the white house that had originally stood on the spot before being moved by the Peakes to make way for their house.