‘Mills and Manors of Little Manchester’ house tour — June 18

A house and garden tour of Almonte in support of the Mississippi Valley Textile Museum

DSC_6728In the 1890s, Almonte had six textile mills, including the Rosamond No. 1—the largest woolen mill in the country. This earned it the title “little Manchester of Canada.” This tour highlights the adaptive reuse of two of those mills and the redevelopment of an old commercial building, as well as taking you into some of the town’s outstanding homes and gardens.

DSC_6726This exciting tour of six exceptional homes and three outstanding waterfront gardens will be held on June 18 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Unlike most house tours, this tour features gorgeous condominiums in two of Almonte’s original mills: one in the Victoria Woolen Mill and one in the Thoburn Mill. The tour also includes Pinehurst Manor.

Built in 1890 for the President of the Rosamond Woolen Company, the house features eight bedrooms, seven bathrooms and ten fireplaces. Located on seven acres, it boasts two private waterfalls.

Also included is a beautiful Victorian “painted lady” and the Menzies House, built in 1850 with its long first-floor veranda and bell-cast roof. The Potvin house, designed by Toronto architects Brian Lee and Marilyn Lake, is a stunning modern home built in 1988 that sits on 21 landscaped acres that sweep down to the Mississippi River.

DSC_6755Dazzling plants and Almonte’s best views can be had in the 3 ½ acre 2 Sisters’ Garden with its lush lawns and rolling falls of limestone. Visitors will then be able to cross the road and stroll through the Old Burnside Estate and across Brown’s Creek. The third garden on the tour is a charming oasis with tall trees, a pond and meandering stone steps down to the river.

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Ticketholders will also have free entry to the Textile Museum to see “Cu: Copper and Textile Fabrications” by artists Fran Solar and Sayward Johnson and to enjoy tea and dessert. Tickets are $30 and can be purchased in Almonte at the Museum and Baker Bob’s, in Carleton Place at The Pickle Dish, as well as in Ottawa at Wabi Sabi on Wellington St. and Darrel Thomas Textiles on Preston St.

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