Bibliography Navigation map Photo index Acknowledgements

The Scott Building
Formerly at the corner of the Promenade du Portage and Eddy Street

Scott Building

Janet Louisa Scott received an empty lot as part of the sizeable inheritance left her in 1874 by her uncle, Philemon Wright, Tiberius' younger son. The building that had occupied it had been razed by fire in 1877. The new commercial building, built in 1879, bore her name. When she was preparing to leave the province to marry in 1885, she transferred her inheritance to her mother, Nancy Louisa Wright-Scott. Janet's husband died the following year, and she returned to the house at 28 Alexandre-Taché Boulevard to live with her mother. When Nancy Louisa died in 1901, the inheritance reverted to Janet, who died in 1921. Her niece, Lois Wright-Scott, who had lived with her from birth, became her heir.

Lois married William Fraser Hadley, an engineer. She died on November 8, 1924, leaving her husband in charge of the administration of the properties that she left to her young son, William Francis. William Fraser Hadley died on December 18, 1963. On February 1, 1964, his son, who lived in Rockliffe, sold the Scott Building to Benjamin Achbar, an Ottawa businessman. This sale marked the end of 158 years of ownership of the property by the heirs of Philemon Wright.

Political conflicts were behind the 1877 fire of the original Martin-Faulkner Building on this site. It was set by opponents of the Liberal politics of L'Écho de Hull (The Hull Echo), one of the first newspapers in the Outaouais region, which was housed on the second floor of the building.

The new Scott Building of 1879 was one-and-a-half storeys high with a mansard roof. Its first tenants were the post office, located in Ed Faulkner's general store, and the milliner J. Duncan. Then came a barber, André Landry; a grain merchant, Henry McCormick; and a tailor, Édouard-Victor Godbout. In 1895, the building was occupied by the Hormidas Larocque shoestore, N. Bélanger's photo studio, Aylen Henry's law office, Major B. Boyd, and a fabric and clothing store, Caron, Carrière et Co.

Several of the tenants remained in the building for a long time. Joseph N. Fortin's smoke shop and billiard room, established in 1884, was still there in 1920. In 1895, the company Fortin et Gravelle had their office at this address. The owners of this company, which made lime among other things, were involved in several sectors. In the following century, they established a hotel over the smoke shop-restaurant; these two businesses were still there in the middle of the 20th century. In 1927, after the death of Lois Scott-Hadley, Fortin et Gravelle took over the management of the building. The jeweller Alphonse Couture remained at this address until 1980. Sidney P. Cook's former Hull Medical Hall pharmacy was acquired by the famous Hull pharmacist Raymond Farley in 1912. It was there that the first telephone in the city was installed in 1884, and then the service counter of the Canadian Express Co., which became the Dominion Express Co. after 1911.

After the Great Fire of April 26, 1900, the building was rebuilt on its foundations. Some tenants, like the firm Fortin et Gravelle, returned; others moved elsewhere. Over the years, Ottawa Electric replaced the telephone company, and the Benone Patry shoestore replaced Larocque's. Chitoovas Gregories had a pastry shop, W. R. Stroud and Mrs. A. Hyland sold tea and Magloire Carrière, a former partner in Caron, Carrière et Co. at the end of the previous century, ran a haberdashery. In 1915, a factory occupied the centre of the building; it may have been the mica factory of the Blackburn company, and then that of the Laurentides company.

The leases from 1965 to 1978 indicate the presence of Claude Gougeon, Couture & Cie, Le Coin des Petits, Jean Dubois, Trans-Canada Shoe, Household Finance, Ervine Borts, Ben Berke Ltd., André Gagnon, Gérard Sarra-Bournet, A. Hamilton Adjusters, Frank Chiarella, Peter Degraaf, Farid I. Abdel Sayid, the Canadian National Bank, Claude Bergeron, Lionel Gauthier, The Citizen, Boutique Açores, Patrick Mantha and others.

On January 30, 1984, Achbar sold the building to Randolph R. McKenzie in Trust, property of the Campeau Corporation. They sold the Scott Building to businessman Carlo Calcerano and his wife, Francisca Ranieri Calcerano, a secretary, both of Ottawa. When Carlo died after the arson, the City was not able to convince his widow to rebuild, and the Council allowed the demolition of the historic vestiges in 1996.