Martin McNamara House
(15 Plank Road, St. John's)
Although the exact date of construction of Martin McNamara's house is unknown, it was first referenced on St. John's maps in 1849 on land granted to James Brine. However, historians believe the house's original owner built it much earlier than this date, possibly in the late eighteenth century. Together with Mallard Cottage and the Anderson House, this structure is one of the best preserved examples of the wooden homes built in the city from the late eighteenth to the early nineteenth century.
In 1857 a fisherman, Martin McNamara, bought the home from the Brine estate and used it as a residence. The two-storeyed hipped roof structure had a centrally-located chimney that provided an early form of central heating to the home. Each room received warmth from individual fireplaces connected to the chimney. This was an important feature in a time when there were few masons and little use of insulation to protect against Newfoundland's often miserable weather.
The Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador designated the dwelling a Registered Heritage Structure on April 1995.
Also view the Martin McNamara House Registered Heritage Structure, and the Martin McNamara House - City of St. John's Heritage Site on the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador web site. The Newfoundland and Labrador Heritage Web Site has on its site only a portion of the registered heritage structures in Newfoundland and Labrador. To view a complete list or search for a particular structure visit the Heritage Foundation's Property Search page.