Ross-Vance-Ethridge House, North East Margaree

by Ned MacDonald

Ross-Vance-Ethridge House, North East MargareeIn the last quarter of the 18th century and early 19th century, four unmarried Ross brothers came to settle in North East Margaree. James, William, David, and Edmund soon took as their wives women of four different nationalities, namely, French, Scotch, Irish, and Dutch respectively. The families laid the foundation for a thriving community and were known for their energy, determination, and hospitality.
It is most probable that this house was built by John Ross, a son of pioneer Edmund Ross who was the second brother to arrive behind his brother James. The connection between the Ross and Ethridge families is as follows: John Ross's daughter Ann married Donald Ethridge in the early 1800's and John Ross's sister, Jennie Ross, married John Ethridge.

The Ethridge family made its mark in Margaree with the arrival of Thomas Ethridge in 1794. He sailed from Newfoundland with skipper Robert Cranton. Later on he married the widow of Skipper Cranton and both had two sons, namely; John and Thomas. (Thomas's son, Donald married Ann Koss as per above.) The Ethridge families were prominent citizens and excellent farmers who were dedicated to developing and maintaining fine properties and farms.

Architecturally, the house possesses some unique characteristics. The building appears from the exterior design and the height of the post to be possibly built about 1845. It would thus be one of the older surviving houses in the Margaree Valley and the Northeast of Margaree.

The exterior decoration of the house is unusual in that one of its unique features is a Palladian window (originally designed by Andrea Palladio 1508-1580. ) This house is also typical of a "small house" Gothic revival with single gable. The exterior is covered with clapboard strips and the main door is supplemented with narrow window surrounds. Many home made tools and antiques make up the character of the interior which is being restored by Mr. Vance, (his grandmother was an Ethridge by marriage.)