948 Highway 2

  • $1,395,000
  • Property Type:
  • Beds: 4
  • Baths: 2 Full, 1 Half
  • Sq Ft: 3,438
  • Lot Sq Ft: 636.48 x 340

Significant historical provenance and privacy meet in this 5 acre country estate minutes from downtown.  Limestone Cluny House was built around 1817, and has been inhabited ever since, but changed hands rarely. It is registered and protected in the City of Kingston Heritage Register under the Ontario Heritage Act.

In the 1990’s it was fully restored and expanded sympathetically to its period, with addition of a massive kitchen/great room wing and grand Master Suite, bringing the interior above ground living space to over 3400 square feet.

At the same time, a seamless integration of new two-car garage with original coach house creates a fabulous stone courtyard reminiscent of a chateau on one side, and beautiful country garden on the other side.  There is potential for further development of the coach house.

In the original wing, on the main floor is the formal living and dining rooms, and an office. Above are three bedrooms and a full bath and laundry room. In the Great Room wing is the spacious kitchen with island and breakfast area in front of one of six wood burning fireplaces. French doors open to the stone courtyard.

On the lower level, which was once the servants’ kitchen, there is now a cosy rec room with fireplace, utility room and storage.

Throughout, wherever possible, period details have been lovingly maintained and restored such original interior shutters, fireboards, cupboards, mantles, regency knobs and Scottish ‘keep’.

Surrounding grounds offer an enchanting perennial country garden and Japanese garden, designed and supervised by a landscaped architect. Lilacs and peonies, lupens, rhododendrons, azaleas, hollyhocks and so many other country favourites flourish here. There is also a raised vegetable garden. Hardwood groves of maple, hickory and oak provide amazing privacy, and quiet paths meander among extensive heritage dry stone walls.

This property is located just east of downtown Kingston and benefits from municipal gas and water services. The septic system dates to the time of the addition.


Home style:
Detached, 2 Storey

Annual property tax:
$6,903 in 2016

Disclosure Statement:
Although the Information displayed is believed to be accurate, no warranties or representations are made of any kind.

Brokered & Advertised by:
Royal Lepage Proalliance Realty Inc., Brokerage
independently owned and operated

Steeped in History


Cluny House, in Pittsburgh Township, was built around 1817 by Lieutenant Colonel Donald Macpherson (c. 1755-1829), a maternal uncle of Sir John A. Macdonald.

Macpherson was born in Inverness-shire, Scotland, and died 25 February 1829 in Kingston, Upper Canada. He arrived in Quebec with his family in 1807 and, in 1809, was ‘honored with the Command’ of the post at Kingston. At the outbreak of the War of 1812, Macpherson decried the critical shortage of small ordnance and the disrepair of the barracks and public buildings at Kingston. The following year, a line of fortified blockhouses and pickets changed the town’s military face. Their construction was a testament to Macpherson’s supervision and ‘resolve to use every exertion in my power… for the defence of this post’. Macpherson purchased 200 acres of Pittsburgh Township land in 1810 before being transferred to Quebec in 1813, and promoted to Lieutenant Colonel.

In 1817 Macpherson returned to Kingston, and by 1820 had retired to the new home and property he nostalgically called Cluny after the clan seat in Scotland. Diaries record that the young John A. Macdonald was a frequent visitor to the Macpherson household, where he sampled his uncle’s library.

In March 1964, a subsequent owner of the property, Colonel George Stanley, Dean of Arts at the Royal Military College (RMC) in Kingston and a Canadian historian, wrote a detailed memorandum in his Cluny House study , outlining the history of Canada’s emblems and his vision for the key components of a new flag design for Canada. Stanley’s single Maple Leaf proposal was evaluated by the Parliamentary Flag Committee along with hundreds of other flag designs and, after minor modifications, was officially adopted in February 1965 as the national flag of Canada.

Cluny House is on the City of Kingston Heritage Register, Part IV Designated as ‘Individual properties protected under the Ontario Heritage Act’. Cluny House is recognized for both its historical and its architectural importance.

Published information about Cluny House can be found in these and many other historical references regarding Kingston, Pittsburgh Township, Sir John A Macdonald and Dr. George Stanley:

New Life in Old Houses, by Mary Jukes, 1966

Lilacs and Limestone: An Illustrated History of Pittsburgh Township, 1787-1987, by William John Patterson, 1989

Old Stones of Kingston, by Margaret Angus, 1966

Address:948 Highway 2
Zip Code:K7L 4V1
Square Feet:3,438
Lot Square Feet:636.48 x 340
Bathrooms:2 Full, 1 Half
Garage:Attached, Detached, Double, Inside Entry

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