57-59 Cork Street

This unusual three storey limestone dwelling was constructed in 1878 for Guelph Township farmer John Murphy. Local mason John Pike was responsible for the fine stone work. The building features a centre gable, bracketed eaves and curved-top window openings with cut stone lintels and window surrounds. The main entrance, on the second floor, is highlighted by a fanlight and sidelights. A unique interior feature of the house is the centre hall plan with a bifurcated staircase on the second and third floors.

A native of Ireland, John Murphy came to Guelph Township in 1871 from the County of Lennox and Addington, where he was Reeve for nineteen years. He purchased Lot 977 at the corner of Dublin and Cork Streets in 1875 for development purposes. Initially he erected the limestone semi-detached dwelling at 78-80 Dublin Street in 1876, followed by this large stone building, which functioned as a duplex, in 1878. Both dwellings were leased to a variety of tenants until the lot was sold and divided in 1894-1895. In 1899 the property was purchased by banker Charles E. Howitt who also leased the house until it was sold in 1920 to printer Frank Adams.

Source: City of Guelph Designation By-law (1995)-14961