(Printable Version)The hill at King Street East and Wentworth was once the location of a British military blockhouse, which guarded the inner harbor of Courtenay Bay. The current house was built in 1877 or 1878 by William Peters, who owned the Peters Tannery business with his two brothers and father. At around the same time, his father, C. H. Peters was building a house for himself at the northeast corner of Wentworth and Leinster (now the Cavanaugh Funeral Home). The tannery was located along Courtenay Bay (around the current location of Wasson's Pharmacy). There had been a previous house on the site which had burned down in the Great Fire in June, 1877. Scorched bricks can still be found beneath the basement floor boards. The Great Fire had burned only as far north as the south side of King Street and you can still see today how the south side of the street has more brick houses than the north side. The people who had to rebuild were determined not to get caught again. The house was originally lit by gas. The gas piping can still be found under the insulation in the attic, and the end of the gas pipes can be seen sticking out of a few ceilings. On the left hand bottom of the fireplace in the west parlor, a small door opens to reveal the old gas valve which fed the fireplace. It was a huge house in it's day. The kitchen and formal dining room were in the basement; the main floor apparently had four parlors. Each floor has 2200 square feet of living space; the basement about 2000. Even with room deducted for the addition, servant's quarters, kitchen, pantry, furnace and coal bin, the house likely had more than 5000 square feet for one family. Servants would have been an absolute necessity in a time before vacuum cleaners and washing machines. The house originally had ten fireplaces; of these, seven remain. Five are in normal usage with one being converted back to Natural Gas. The others no longer have chimneys. The house also had its own water supply. A large galvanized tin tank is still located in the attic above the upstairs bathroom. The house was located on the same block as the old city reservoir and its upper floors were above the reach of the gravity fed city water. Water would have to be manually pumped into the tank to provide a supply to the upstairs. The bathrooms were the first in Saint John to have tiled walls. When the house was built, people came in specially to see what this innovation was like. The house was sold, perhaps in 1886, to Howard McLeod, Assistant Receiver General to the province of New Brunswick. William Peters subsequently built two other houses along King Street. On the inside wall above the door to the carriage house loft, you can still see "H. McLeod" written. McLeod sold the house to Elizabeth Russell in 1907. She died in 1916, followed by her husband, James Russell, a local merchant, in 1920. Muriel Young, their only surviving heir, inherited the house. The house was divided into three apartments in the early 1930's. To accomplish this, the stairway from the basement to the first floor was removed, the original front door was removed and two doors put in its place. A wall was also built down the middle of the front hall. The old brownstone stairs were removed from the front of the house and a new basement entrance was installed under the main entrance. A wood framed addition was added and the old back door walled up. The door frame can still be seen in the main hall. The addition had the kitchen of the main floor apartment. It is now used as a mud/utility room. It also houses the fire escape for the second floor apartment. Through the 1930's and1940's the home was occupied by the Vice President of the Dry Dock, Frank Wilson and through the 1950's and 1960's by fur cutter Bruce Finley. There was a fire in the basement, perhaps in the 1940's. Damage appears to have been limited to the furnace room, living room, and the two rooms off the living room (currently a walk in closet and a bedroom). The house was bought in 1973 by the Flogeras family, the original owners of the Mediterranean Restaurant on Rothesay Avenue. They sold in 1979 to Libby Shackleton, a noted local artist. Here husband, John Shackleton, was a civil engineer with the city and was involved in such projects as the building of the throughway, redevelopment of the harbour station land, the renovation of the City Market and the Imperial Theatre and the building and management of Market Square. The Shackletons undertook major renovations, undoing much of the changes made to the upper two floors when the house was divided into apartments. The only room the Shackletons did not touch is the studio / office in the north east corner of the second floor. Their renovation accomplishments were recognized by the Saint John Heritage Trust in 1983. The house was bought in 2000 by Susan Peace and her husband, Brad Keith. Susan works for Irving Oil and Brad is a freelance editor and part time student. They continued with the restoration work in the time they were in the house. In 2002, Terry Munn and her husband, Mercer Munn purchased the house and felt the property deserved to be shared with the public, so they opened it as a Bed and Breakfast Inn. In respect for the original builder, they decided to name it "A Tanners Home Inn". Specific Dates in the History of the House: 25 October 1878 William and Mary Jane Peters mortgaged Lot 428, 190 King St. East, to the Diocesan Church Society of New Brunswick for $5,000 4 May 1886 Peters mortgage paid off and cancelled. The property was purchased, perhaps at this time, by Howard D. and S. Agusta McLeod. 30 May 1907 McLeods sold property to Elizabeth Russell, who mortgaged it for $15,000. She died on 19, December, 1916. Her husband, a local merchant, was born on 2, August, 1863 and died 11, April, 1920. 1920 The property transferred to Murial L (Russell) Young, daughter and last heir to James V. Russell. 27 June 1973 Muriel Young sold the property for $48,000 to Theodore & Beulah Licourgiotis, Mike and Edith Feggos, and George and Metaxia Flogeras. They subsequently sold to George and Metaxia and William Flogeras. 28 September 1979 Flogerases sold the property to Elizabeth (Libby) B. and John Shackleton. Shackletons proceeded to do major restoration to the house. 28 January 2000 Shackletons sold the property to Susan Peace and Brad Keith 24 May 2002 Peace and Keith sold the property to Terry and Mercer Munn. 01 July 2002 A Tanners Home Inn opens for business with an open hearth and a friendly smile.