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Winter in Haliburton

Clara’a paintings record places long gone. This is the legacy she has left Canadians. In an attempt to compare the “then” with the “now”, this website and the Clara Harris Research Tours are part of this endeavor. But it is a task that requires contributions from many people and organizations. Thanks to Haliburton Highlands Museum ( Curator, Stephen Hill, we have detailed information on the location of the buildings in Clara’s painting, Winter in Haliburton as well as an aerial view taken in the 1930’s.

“The yellow building at centre of the painting is 240 Highland Str., the former Jack Pollard residence, a yellow brick veneer house erected in the late 1890’s, original owner unknown. The reddish brown building to its L. is 238 Highland Str., the former A.H. “Bert” Curry residence, also a yellow brick veneer house from the late 1890’s. The painting shows 238 & 240 from the back. The white house w. green trim across from these would be the former William Kellett house, on the N. side of Highland Str., demolished in the early 1970’s to make way for Dr. Harry Good’s medical building. The portion of a building which is barely visible off the front R. corner of the Pollard house is the Hedley Feir residence at 237 Highland Str. At the extreme L. of the painting is the front verandah of the Thomas Carnochan house, demolished in 1990. At the extreme R. of the painting is the Fry house on the N.E. corner of Mountain & Dysart, demolished in 1952. It was replaced by the current bungalow 73 Mountain at that time. With all due respect to Mrs. Harris, she did employ some artistic license w. the Fry house. It was more or less an L-shaped floor plan, part of the structure is missing in the painting. The gray barn to R. of centre was located near the S.E. corner of Maple Ave. & Victoria Str. Its owner is not known to us; it was used to store horse-drawn logging equipment (sleighs, & C.); it was later torn down (n.d.). The buildings above this barn are not clear, & some artistic license may have been taken by the artist due to distance & angles tending to alter the viewer’s perspective. In the cold of Winter, it is not the most comfortable situation to be outdoors sketching field notes for later work in a heated indoor studio! The gray barn at R. belonged to Edmund Robertson; it still stands at 37 Maple Ave. as Win Yeung Chinese Restaurant. (Robertson’s house was beside the barn to the N., still standing on the S.E. corner of Maple Ave. & Park Str., as 33 Maple Ave.); it is not shown in the painting. The yellow house above this barn appears to be the Ross Malloy house, erected in the early 1920’s, & presently known as 28 Maple Ave., on the N.W. corner of Maple & Park.”

1930’s Aerial View, Haliburton Highlands, (Haliburton Highlands Museum Cat. No. 980.1.8) From Curator, Stephen Hill: “Attached photo shows Haliburton Village taken from the vicinity of present-day Skyline Park in the 1930’s (H.H.M. Cat. No. 980.1.8). The large building in the foreground is the Haliburton Community Centre (“the hockey rink”). You will notice Mountain Str. & Highland Str. running parallel to the length of the arena; Dysart Ave. is the short street running between them, just above the arena. From here you should be able to locate the buildings shown in the painting, & described above.”


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