While no special historic events or people can be traced to the Dwyer House, it is an important structure for different reasons. It represents the kind of dwelling that an average outport fisherman owned toward the end of the nineteenth century — the kind of house that is slowly disappearing in rural Newfoundland.
© 1998 Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador
Fisherman Gerald Dwyer built the house between 1887 and 1890. Residents in the community of Titling, Fogo Island, knew him as an excellent carpenter and furniture maker. Local lore states the Dwyer family was part of the second generation of nineteenth-century Irish immigrants that came to Tilting. The community itself is unique for the number of Irish Roman Catholics living there along the predominantly Protestant English northeast coast.
Dwyer House is located on the peninsula in the centre of the harbour. Its location makes the house highly visible from almost anywhere in the community. It is also near the waterfront and is oriented toward the harbour, like most outport folk houses.
The house is a typical wood frame construction found in many of the houses of Tilting. It is a two-storeyed structure with an unusual roof shape, locally known as a bell-cast roof — so named because the roof curves out over the beaded-edge eaves. Because of the expense of constantly renovating these old folk houses and the popularity of new house designs, few dwellings such as Dwyer House remain on Fogo Island.
The house remained in the Dwyer family for almost 100 years. In the mid-1980s the house's ownership passed to Robert Mellin and Heidi Kravitz who maintain the house as a private residence.
The Dwyer House was recognised as a Registered Heritage Structure in April 1990.