2237 Spring Street, Castleton

(late 1800s)
Roll No. 1411-011-050-13500 – Cramahe Township Ontario

Ontario Farmhouse

2237 Spring Street in the village of Castleton Ontario is a classic Ontario farmhouse, but without the “Gothic” features some of these large century homes have.

The property is typical in that it has a prominent gable end with an “L” shaped two story wing to the right. The right wing has a peaked gable roof with a window. The window has a charming ogee arch decoration which gives the house a whimsical look. There is another window which sits at the same level as the lower one in the gable end (symmetrical) and finally there is a window in the second story of the gable end. All the windows are two over two double hung with decorative louvered shutters in cheery yellow.

There is a one story addition on the rear of the structure.

The building is clad in red brick which is a richer, deeper colour than the ubiquitous red brick found on properties built in the mid to late 1800s. This could be due to a local difference in the clay or it could date the house to turn of the 20th century. The front door in the wing has six panes of glass but no transom or sidelights.

The roof is cross gable and there is no central chimney visible.

There is no particular Victorian embellishment such as brackets or gingerbread and depending on the build date, the foundation could be rubble, concrete or rubble parged to look like solid concrete.

History or Associative Value

Additional Historical and Genealogical Information

2237 Spring Street, Castleton, Ontario
Cramahe Township, Concession 7, Lot 33, Castleton Lot 191

The 200 acres of Lot 33, Concession 7, which includes much of modern-day Castleton, were granted by the Crown to Catherine Williamson (1800-1879), Martha Byrns (1797-1870), Sarah Stevens (1794=?), Rebecca Pruyn (1809-?), and Jane Pruyn (1798-?) on 2 April 1832. These were the five daughters of Matthew Pruyn (1762-1813) an Empire Loyalist who settled in Prince Edward County. It is unclear why his daughters were granted this land. There is no evidence that any of them ever lived there.

Rebecca Pruyn sold the 200 acres belonging to herself and her sisters to Joseph Abbott Keeler (1788-1855) on 23 February 1833. Over the next several years Keeler sold of bits and pieces of this land, and what was left went to his son Joseph Keeler (1824-1881) on 23 September 1854.

The younger Keeler sold Castleton Lots 191 and 192 to Phoebe Cole (1834-1907) on 18 October 1873. Phoebe was born Phoebe Gaffield. She was a granddaughter of early Cramahe settler Nathaniel Gaffield (ca. 1755-ca. 1838) and daughter of Oliver Gaffield (1799-1873), who owned the Farmers’ Hotel in Castleton (on or immediately south of the site of the current Castleton Town Hall). She was married to Cornelius Cole (1834-?), whose occupation was listed at various times as farmer, brick manufacturer, lumber merchant, grocery and crockery merchant, and wharfinger. There were at least two children: Florence (1870-?) and Hughie (1874-?).

Phoebe and Cornelius Cole sold the property to Elias Alley (1815-?), a house carpenter and painter, on 5 May 1874. Alley was married to Alzada Mallory (1819-1889). There were seven children: Albert Willett (1844-1873), Adeline Elizabeth (1846-1923), Justus Riley (1849-1929), George (1848-1908), Ery (1850-?), Lillace Louise (1852-1886), and Joseph N. (1859-1935).

The Alley family retained the property until 30 June 1920 when Elias’s children and their spouses sold it to Albert W. Wolfraim (1880-1971), who at that time was a mechanic in Rochester, New York. Wolfraim was the son of Alley’s daughter Lillace and her husband George Washington Wolfraim (1852-1945), son of Oliver Wolfraim (1830-1904), onetime owner of the Temperance Hotel.
Albert Wolfraim, still a resident of Rochester, and his wife Florence (1885-1977; née Gaffield), sold the property to Sarah Richards (1855-1930, née Armstrong) on 10 March 1921. She was the widow of John Bibby Richards (1845-1890).

The Coles purchased lots 191 and 192 from Joseph Keeler in 1873 for $80 and sold them in 1874 to Elias Alley for $750. This strongly suggests that a major improvement to the property occurred during their short tenure as owners. The Elias heirs sold it 47 years later in 1921 for only $1000.

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