Richey Waugh’s General Store

Historical Background

The building located at 9 Bridge Street in the Village of Oxford Mills is designated as being of architectural and historical value. The building was constructed as a general store, post office and living quarters in circa 1861 by Richey Waugh, who had purchased the land from Aaron Merrick in 1857, for the sum of two-thousand pounds.

Richey Waugh came to this area from Ireland in the 1830's as a young man, with his parents and younger brothers and a sister. In 1842 he purchased the log dam, saw mill and stone grist mill on the adjacent property from Asa Clothier. He replaced the log dam with one of stone, completed constructionofthegristmillandaddedashinglemill. Atthesametimeheopenedageneralstore and Oxford Mills’ first Post Office, in a frame house. In 1846, he served as Superintendent of Education for the District of Johnstown, and later as Superintendent of Roads.

The 1852 Census, lists his possessions as; a stone store, a saw mill, a 1-storey frame house, 2 shingle mills; with a total of 14 employees and the value of the mills being seventeen hundred pounds. When Kemptville was incorporated as a village in 1857 and ceded from the township, Waugh became the first Reeve of the new Oxford Township Council. Sometime during this period he built another stone house at 12 Bridge Street on the lot east of the mill. In 1879, he sold that residence to the Anglican Church for use as its first Rectory. Richey Waugh died in Winnipeg at the home of one of his children in 1882 at the age of 62.

Architectural Significance

The building at 9 Bridge Street is a two and one-half storey stone commercial structure. The two street facades are made up of even-coursed, cut limestone masonry, while the stonework of the rear and east facades is rough-cut broken masonry. The window and door openings are highlighted by cut-stone voussoirs and lug-style bush-hammered limestone sills. The lower storey has large twelve and sixteen light original commercial style windows with plain masonry reveals. The second storey has the original eight over eight single-hung sashes, but they have been modified to a two over two configuration. The windows in the gable ends of the attic storey are the original six over six single- hung sashes. The ground floor has two commercial entrances complete with original entrance doors and transom lights.

The interior of the building is noteworthy since it contains elements from the original store, including counter-tops and storage bins, as well as a fire-proof vault. The vault door is made of iron and bears the maker’s name, “John Boyd - Montreal”.

The heritage designation is restricted to the south and west facades of the building, including the windows and entrances.


Visitor Information

  • 613-258-9569 ext. 162

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    Municipality of North Grenville

    285 County Road #44, PO Box 130
    Kemptville, ON
    K0G 1J0


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