This house was built in 1860 by Robert Lillie Gibson, of pink Grimsby sandstone from his own quarry. Gibson's original quarry in Grimsby gave out and a new quarry was started in Beamsville.
Gibson had contracts with the Great Western Railroad for bridges from Sarnia to Rimouski. He was killed in an accident in 1884 and his wife, Fanny, was left with six children. His nephew, William Gibson, carried on the quarry since Robert's sons were too young.
Gibson Street "The Gibson house at 114 Gibson Street gives this street its name. The house was built circa 1862 by Robert Lillie Gibson who had come to Grimsby in search of good stone for quarrying. Robert and the men in this family were stonemasons from Scotland, and he was commissioned to comb the escarpment for appropriate sites. As luck would have it, he settled on the west Ã¢â‚¬Å“pointÃ¢â‚¬Â above Grimsby and established a quarry there. Meanwhile, however, he met and fell in love with Frances Thompson, and they were married right away. Robert built the little house at 102 Gibson Street for his bride, but he began work on the lovely stone house by Forty Mile Creek. RobertÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s quarry above the house was a success due to the building boom in public structures and railway bridges during that era. Rock was carried from the quarry to waiting ships by means of a little railway that ran from the base of the escarpment to the foot of Maple Avenue where a pier was built for this purpose.
In 1870, Robert opened a second quarry in Beamsville. At that time, he brought his 21-year-old nephew, William from Scotland to act as bookkeeper. When Robert died in an unfortunate accident in 1882, William took over the operation of the quarries. In 1891, William ran successfully for Parliament, holding his seat until 1902. He was then appointed to the Senate. Senator Gibson School in Beamsville is named for him. WilliamÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s stone house, Inverugie, is now part of Great Lakes Christian College.Ã¢â‚¬Â The Streets of Grimsby from A-W
A Tour of GrimsbyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Designated Heritage Sites, 2004. Available as a brochure or online: www.town.grimsby.on.ca/Heritage-Information-Planning Scroll down to the title.
The brochure is available at the following three locations, but call ahead for hours and availability:
Grimsby Historical Society located at the Carnegie Commons Building. Call for availability. They can be reached by phone or for a visit on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 8:30 am to 12 noon Ã¢â‚¬â€œ or by appointment.
Gateway Niagara Information Centre www.tourismniagara.com/gateway_niagara.html
Town of Grimsby's municipal office at 160 Livingston Avenue, open from 8:30 am - 4:30 pm (905) 945-9634 Available in a pamphlet rack located across from the receptionist's desk. www.town.grimsby.on.ca/Maps/town-of-grimsby.html
Grimsby Heritage Advisory Committee (GHAC). The Streets of Grimsby from A-W, 2000. Available for sale at the Grimsby Historical Society as well as at the Town of Grimsby's municipal office.
Heron Trips Blog www.herontrips.com/Grimsby.html Historic Walking Tour of Grimsby brochure published by the Grimsby Historical Society is available as a brochure, or online http://westniagara.com/ghs/map.html Click dot 6 to see Gibson House information.