Franklin House is a two storey wood framed house built in 1938 located on the southwest corner of Baker Drive and Hill Street in West Quesnel, BC. The historic place includes the building and the parcel of land it occupies.
Franklin House is located in West Quesnel which developed as a rural community with small houses and family farms. The growth of West Quesnel was moderate until a single-lane bridge across the Fraser River was constructed in 1929. The bridge provided a permanent link between the two Quesnel communities. These communities were amalgamated into one city in 1958. In 1971, the two-lane Moffat Bridge was built and growth in West Quesnel increased steadily. While not in its original form, the house is a physical reminder of the people who shaped the development of Quesnel.
The house is named for Albert and Mary Franklin who lived here for many years. Albert was from Washington State and his wife Mary was from Ontario. He was a mechanic with the Highways Department in Quesnel. The couple lived at Nazko Valley until 1930 when they moved into Quesnel so that their children could attend school. Like many other farming families in West Quesnel, Albert and Mary grew food for themselves, their neighbours and the local stores. Mary died in 1960 and Albert died in 1968. The Franklin family is recognized for their contribution to the development of the community with a street named in their honour.
Homer and Maude Hachey purchased the house from the Franklin family in the 1960s. Homer and Maude were married in 1918. They acquired their first property in the Quesnel area through the Soldier Settlement program. Homer had a leather shop where he repaired harnesses, made moccasins, built toys, cribs and sleds. Homer went to Victoria to make shoes for the soldiers during WWII. The family returned to Quesnel in 1944. Homer was a member of the Royal Canadian Legion and the B.P.O. Elks. Maude was a singer in the Catholic Church Choir, a member of the Catholic Women’s League, a Lady of Royal Purple, and she received an Apostolic Blessing from the Pope in 1980.
The character-defining elements of Franklin House include:
- an excellent example of a large two storey 1930s house;
- a wrap around covered veranda with spindle railings and post supports;
- a slightly sloping roof line on the two levels maintaining the same degree of slope;
- a central chimney, wood frame construction, and a rock wall fence.