While the Montgomery Birth Place and the Green Gables Heritage Place may be one of the top places that come to mind to see when visiting Prince Edward Island, Lucy Maud Montgomery also spent much of her childhood and life in these other homes. If you are planning to make a trip to PEI, make sure to add these attractions to your bucket list.
The Anne of Green Gables Museum
4542 Route 20, Park Corner, PE, C0B 1M0
Montgomery was raised by her grandparents as well as Aunt Annie Macneill (1848 – 1924), daughter of her grandparents and sister of her mother. They lived on the Macneill Homestead and when Maud was 7 years old, Aunt Annie got married to John Campbell and left the Macneill Farm to live at the Campbell Farm House in Park Corner.
Montgomery spent much of her childhood at the Campbell House and called the home in her journals “the wonder castle of my childhood”. It provided much inspiration for her writing and Montgomery dubbed the house ‘Silver Bush’. It would provide the setting for The Story Girl (1911), as well as the series of ‘Pat’ books, Pat of Silver Bush (1933) and Mistress Pat (1935). She called the nearby pond “Lake of Shining Waters", a name that has remained to this day.
Montgomery knew that eventually, she would have to move out when her grandmother passed, because the house was owned by her uncle who lived nearby, John Franklin MacNeill (1851 – 1936). When Grandmother MacNeill died in 1911, Montgomery left the Macneill homestead and moved to the home of her Aunt Annie where she would soon marry Ewan and move shortly after to Leaskdale, Ontario.
The land was first settled by the Campbell family in 1776. In 1872 a home was then built for John and Aunt Annie. The property has been owned by the Campbell family ever since and is still operated by their descendants. Aunt Annie and Uncle John Campbell’s children James Campbell and his siblings referred to Montgomery as Aunt Maud, even though they were cousins. James' dream to turn the house into a museum was completed posthumously by his wife Mrs. Ruth Campbell, who opened their house as the Anne of Green Gables Museum in 1972. The museum is currently run by James and Ruth’s son, George, and his family.
Visitors enter through the old kitchen, which is still warmed by a wood-fire stove as when Montgomery would visit. Tourists will see many artifacts, including the actual Blue Chest from The Story Girl and Montgomery’s hand-developed photographs. The parlor where Montgomery got married, still has the same organ and furnishings used in Montgomery’s wedding, which took place on July 5, 1911. Couples from around the world come to get married in that very same room.
Visitors can also see the author's little bedroom where she stayed when she came to visit, which is complete with a collection of her books that she autographed for the Campbell family. You will also see her crazy patchwork quilt that she worked on for 5 years. It was comprised of bits of trimming from clothes and hats from family and friends, and stored away and thus still remains well intact
The Museum will be open from May 20, 2022 – October 15, 2022. For more information on bookings, visit Admission - The Anne of Green Gables Museum (annemuseum.com)
Silver Bush Campbell Farm House - Park Corner, Prince Edward Island - Atlantic Canada Heritage Properties on Waymarking.com
Anne of Green Gables Museum - Cavendish Beach (cavendishbeachpei.com)
The Anne Of Green Gables Museum – Literary Walk-Through & Bucket List – THE CHRONICLES OF HISTORY
Macneill Homestead, Prince Edward Island, Where Anne Shirley was "Born" - The L.M. Montgomery Literary Society (weebly.com)
Montgomery Inn at Ingleside
4615 Route 20, Park Corner, Kensington, PE C0B 1M0
The Montgomery Inn at Ingleside dates back to 1877, and was originally the home of Montgomery’s grandfather, Senator Donald Montgomery. It was the place where Montgomery also spent most of her childhood, and named the homestead “Ingleside”, which serves as the setting for the marital house of Anne and Gilbert in the series of Ingleside books: Anne's House of Dreams (1917), Anne of Ingleside (1939), Rainbow Valley (1919), and Rilla of Ingleside (1921).
Currently owned by Paul and Michelle Montgomery, the house was passed along the Montgomery generations throughout the years, bought and sold several times but always staying with a Montgomery. In the 1970s it was operated as the Montgomery Tourist Home by Paul’s grandmother. In the 1980s and 90s, Paul’s father Robert acquired the home which was later called the Montgomery Manor. In 2014, it was acquired by Robert’s son Paul and his wife Michelle, who renovated the house into a heritage bed and breakfast inn.
“It was in quite a state of disrepair,” Paul told the Salt Wire in 2016. “We’ve put a new foundation in, stripped walls downright to the bare studs.”
The three-story 19th Century wooden-clad home opened as an inn in 2016 and still preserves many of its historic features. Over the kitchen and dining room are three bedrooms that were the servants’ quarters when the senator resided in the home. The serving window, where Donald rang the doorbell to receive his food, still remains, as well as the hand-painted scrolling on the wooden doors. The green spotted china dogs, Gog and Magog, which Montgomery wrote about it in Anne of the Island (1915), are still there.
The hotel is a perfect retreat for visitors, as it is actually right next to the Anne of Green Gable Museum (Silver Bush) where visitors can easily walk over and visit. It is also next to the ‘Lake of Shining Waters’ and has a lovely view of the Gulf of St. Lawrence.
The inn features 7 bedrooms (just as Montgomery wrote in her books) and the main floor has the Senator’s suite. The 2nd floor has 6 bedrooms, including Lucy Maud’s room, Ingleside Suite, Avonlea Suite, and Blue Moon Suite. The Anne room and Rilla room share a bathroom. For reservations please visit Home (montgomeryheritageinn.com)
Montgomery descendant restoring house that inspired Anne’s Ingleside | Salt Wire
Hotels to stay at if you are an ‘Anne of Green Gables Fan’
Bideford Parsonage Museum
784 Bideford Road, Rye 166, North Cape Coastal Drive, Ellerslie-Bideford, PE, C0B 1J0
The Bideford Parsonage Museum was the residence Montgomery stayed at during her very first teaching assignment at just 19 years old at the nearby Bideford schoolhouse (August 1894 – May 1895). Montgomery boarded with the family of Rev. Estey and his wife and daughter, and had a large room overlooking the Goodwood (Bideford) River and Malpeque Bay.
Infamously, Mrs. Estey made a 'liniment cake" for a minister visiting the house, and this incident is referred to in Montgomery’s 1917 memoir The Alpine Path. It was also submitted by Montgomery as a short story in the Golden Days magazine published on August 27, 1898, with the title "A New-Fashioned Flavoring". It was also later used in the 1908 publication of Anne of Green Gables in the chapter "A New Departure in Flavorings."
The gothic architectural-styled home was first built in 1878 by accountant and telegraph operator Thomas H. Pope. The Pope family had lived there for 6 years until selling it to the Bideford Methodist Church for their parsonage in 1884. After the Church Union in 1925, it became the United Church Manse until it was sold in 1972.
In 2000, the home received a Millennium Grant from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) and it was restored to its Victorian style. In the late 2000s, volunteers Wayne and Janice Trowsdale, led a campaign to save the house from being moved from its original Bideford location to the Avonlea Village tourist site, which would have meant cutting the house into three sections for moving on the highway. The house received a heritage designation and the Trowsdales received the Volunteer of the Year Award for their contribution to the Bideford Parsonage Museum in 2016.
The house is operated as a museum and features many artifacts and refurbished rooms. Visitors can see Montgomery’s former bedroom where she would look over her lesson plans and official record of her salary for that year - the precise sum of $149.58! Visitors can also check out the pantry where the famed 'liniment cake was made by Mrs. Estey.
The museum is open seasonally from June – September. For more information visit Home | Bideford Parsonage Museum (wchistoricalsociety.wixsite.com)
P.E.I. community museums have a lot to offer this summer | CBC News
Bideford Parsonage Museum | Bideford, Prince Edward Island Museums & Art Galleries |Real Adventures
ThevAlpine Path by L. M. Montgomery – Pages Unbound | Book Reviews &Discussions (wordpress.com)
P.E.I. Heritage Awards handed out | Salt Wire
Former Bideford school site recognized as heritage place | West Prince Graphic |peicanada.com
Cornelius Leard House (currently closed)
2904 Route 112, Bedeque, PE C0B 1C0
The Cornelius Leard House was the residence Montgomery stayed at while teaching from across the road at the Lower Bedeque school house (October 1897– March 1898). It would be Montgomery’s last teaching job before turning to writing full-time and presumably where she met the greatest love of her life.
Cornelius Leard and his family came to live in Lower Bedeque in 1863 from Tyron PEI. He and his wife Amy Jane had 8 children. In 1897, their son Alphius Leard began teaching at the local school and left in the fall to pursue medical training in dentistry. Montgomery came on board as a substitute teacher and got the position because her fiancé Ed Simpson was friends with Alphius Leard.
At this time Montgomery began pursuing the quiet life of a teacher and the previous year she had become secretly engaged to Edward Simpson, a future Baptist minister. However, she started to fall for the Leard family’s oldest son Herman and they had a secret affair until March 1898. When Montgomery’s grandfather passed in 1898, she had to go back to care for her grandmother in Cavendish. A brief visit in the fall would fully end her relationship with Herman and the following year he died from influenza.
Ownership of the home was passed to Dr. Alphius Leard, and then to the MacFarlane family. Two of Cornelius’s daughters had married into the MacFarlane family. In 2008 July Edgcomb from California, moved her family to the Island and lived just up the road from the Leard House. It was her dream to live in PEI and when she heard the house was listed for sale, she bought the house. The house had never been opened to the public before and was in despair and neglect for about 50 years. She partnered with Abi Totty and Courtney Gallant on a new venture of opening it up to the public. They started restoring the house in November 2015.
‘It's been a painstaking process, removing layers of wood paneling, linoleum and wallpaper,” Edgcomb told CBC in March 2016.
While tearing up a section of a floorboard, Edgcomb's husband makes a shocking discovery and found a corset, a garter belt, a man's handkerchief, a ladies' night jacket, receipts from 1908, and Red Cross pins.
"Now why someone would feel the need to put those things in the floorboard, who's to say?" Edgcomb told the CBC. "But everybody we tell this, their imaginations are definitely running wild."
The Leard House first opened its doors to the public on June 13th, 2016. They offered a gift shop, tea room with tea leaf readings, cooking classes with guest chef nights every Saturday, yoga, open mike nights, and more. They also had plans of an artisan space in the renovated barn and even a chance to spend the night in the room where Lucy Maud Montgomery stayed in 1897. Edgcomb described it as a "sleep where Maud slept" experiential package.
Despite a successful first season, traffic at the Leard House was tenuous after it opened in May for a second season. Unfortunately, In July 2017, Edgcomb decided to close the business for good, but for the time being, hasn’t sold the property. She decided to pass it down to her children.
“The family has a need for the house. My daughter and son-in-law are going to move in. I’ve set a rule for them. They have to maintain the historical integrity of the house.”
Lucy Maud Montgomery connection celebrated in Leard home restoration | CBC News
Grand opening of The Leard House attracts large crowds | Salt Wire
The Leard House restaurant is returning to Lower Bedeque | Salt Wire
Leard House owner explains decision to close the doors of Maud’s hideaway | Salt Wire
New Leard House business in Bedeque to pay tribute to L.M. Montgomery | Salt Wire
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