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39-Alma-StreetSTREET ADDRESS: 39 Alma Street



COUNTY: Yarmouth

YEAR BUILT: 1865-1869


Greek Revival in style this is a one and a half storey home of wood construction. The symmetrical two bay facade has an off-centered doorway. The steeply pitched gable roof has non-return eaves and double matching gables at the sides. The inset chimney is placed discreetly at the peak. The portico is in an enclosed porch with side lights. The windows are two over two double hung and trimmed with large casings and eyebrow labels. There is a three sided bay at the front trimmed at the base with rectangular panels. A gable roof ell extends to the rear, this contains a shed roofed dormer and a second chimney. The house is clad in narrow, wooden clapboard and trimmed with a plain frieze and narrow cornerboards. The foundation is made of cemented stone. The above ground exterior has been faced with concrete.


Believed to have been built between 1865 and 1869 for Joseph Sleeth, a blacksmith, this house is now owned by Eric and Barbara Ruff and is a registered heritage property. From 1883 until 1925 the house was owned by the Sanderson family Gilbert O. Sanderson and his son George g. were in the mercantile business. Captain Gilbert Sanderson sold the house to George in 1890. George Sanderson was a prominent shipowner and also a broker for the commercial Insurance Company. He was on the committee which built the Old Ladies Home in 1889 and was later a township warden. He is most noted, though, as being on the first town council after Yarmouth's incorporation in 1890. In 1916 George Sanderson and his wife Fannie sold the house to their son Claude L. Sanderson. Claude Sanderson was educated at Acadia and Dalhousie Universities and received his L.L.B. in 1905. He practiced law for fifty-nine years and was Dean of Local Barristers and a member of the Council of Nova Scotia Barristers Society.


Situated on its original site on the South East corner of Alma and Carleton Streets this house has been well maintained and his surrounded by well kept lawns. Early photos show no major changes to the architecture.

PRESENT OWNER: Eric and Barbara Ruff

ADDRESS: 39 Alma Street Yarmouth, N.S.


OCCUPATION: Blacksmith

BUILDER: Unknown

ORIGINAL USE: Residential

PRESENT USE: Residential

Joseph Sleeth Sept. 1 1865 Oct. 1 1869 Blacksmith AP 2
Robert Eakins Oct. 1 1869 Sept. 15 1874 Accountant AS 286
Henry & Mary Dennis Sept. 15 1874 Aug. 1 1883 Master Mariner/Wife AW 532
Gilbert Sanderson Aug. 1 1883 Jan. 28 1890 Master Mariner N/A
George & Fannie Sanderson Jan. 28 1890 Jan. 31 1916 Insurance Broker/Wife BW 824
Claude L. Sanderson Jan. 31 1916 Apr. 16 1925 Barrister DJ 402
Herbert & Florence Boyd Apr. 16 1925 Apr. 28 1952 Clerk/Wife DV 355
Joseph F. & Jean A. Marshall Apr. 28 1952 July 27 1953 N/A FI 109
Bruce & Evelyn Watson July 27 1953 June 23 1965 N/A FL 49
Anne L. MacQueen June 23 1965 Apr. 17 1973 N/A GP 184
Robert Cody Apr. 17 1973 Mar. 25 1974 N/A JA 656
Brian & Eloise Allen Mar. 25 1974 June 4 1975 N/AS JA 342
Eric J. & Barbara Ruff June 4 1975 N/A Museum Curator / Provincial Civil Servant JQ 159


Joseph Sleeth, in later years, became a deputy Sheriff and then the town jailer.

SOURCES: Registry of Deeds/Probate (Yarmouth) A.F. Church Map (1870) B.E.V. MAP OF TOWN OF YARMOUTH (1878) Vanguard Article by Kit Lockhart Yarmouth Directories, 1890, 1895