Loyalist House is a museum and National Historic Site located in uptown Saint John, New Brunswick. It was the home of the prosperous Merritt family, who occupied from its completion in 1817 until 1958. It was taken over by the New Brunswick Historical Society in 1961. Its current address is 120 Union Street.Arrange to visit Loyalist House and other attractions in Saint John using our Saint John road trip planning website.
The Merritt family were United Empire Loyalists, originally from Rye, New York. In May 1783, along with approximately 6,000 other loyalists, they landed at Parrtown, New Brunswick, having fled the American Revolution. The patriarch of the Saint John Merritts, Thomas Merritt (1729–1821), lived with his wife and seven children in Parrtown (what is now the south end of the City of Saint John). Despite being initially of "modest circumstances," the family soon became prominent in the city, with the second generation amassing great wealth.
David Daniel Merritt, the third of Thomas' sons and a wealthy shop keeper, purchased the Loyalist House property, on which construction began in 1810. The house took until 1817 to complete, likely due to the War of 1812. The property was, at that time, just within the city limits, Union street being its northern border until 1889. As a consequence, the area surrounding the property was sparsely populated, allowing the Merritts to keep livestock well into the later half of the century. While the house was originally at street level, as the city expanded the streets were dug down to lessen the strain on the draught horses coming up Germain Street. This created the elevated look of the house, which can be seen in the above photo.
Loyalist House Reviews
Took the tour around the house. Very well cared for indeed and the antiques in this house are wonderful. Had the full tour around the house, and learnt about the old day. Fascinated with the fire... more »
We have seldom visited a home of this age (1817) that has so much "original to the house" furnishings, clothing, utensils, etc.. When they were making it into a museum, the found many of these in.... more »
Small museums are the best because you get so much detail! We enjoyed the tour and learning a bit more of Canadian history
Another great place to visit in this historical city.
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