Craigdarroch Castle

12 08 2012

Craigdarroch Castle – though not ACTUALLY a castle in the usual “repel the hordes”  definition – was built between 1887 and 1890 for Robert Dunsmuir and his wife Joan in 28 acres… just off Fort St., Victoria. Exceedingly rich from coal mining in Nanaimo, his interests ran to rail (much coal was sold in San Francisco), shipping and the business empire also included: collieries; an iron works; a saw mill; a quarry (the source of the sandstone for the exterior of Craigdarroch); a dyking company; a theatre; and extensive real estate.

Robert died in 1889 before the house was finished, and it was occupied by his wife and three unmarried daughters before being sold in 1910 and then having a history of being a military hospital and college.

It’s now a museum and though much of the original contents have been sold away, it is stocked with period pieces of a similar type, and the museum is trying hard to locate the original pieces to “bring them home”.

The house has extensive stained glass windows, and as we visited on a sunny day, they were shown off to great effect.

The full tour guide can be found here. And there’s even a catalogue of the artifacts available online.



2 responses

12 08 2012
Of burnt custard and wormwood « Quieter Elephant

[…] a hard day’s touristing, there’s nothing better than sitting down to a fine meal in great company. Unfortunately, I […]

14 08 2012
misfits' miscellany

Call me Pip.

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