Simeon Perkins House

105 Main Street, Liverpool


The following is taken, with permission, from South Shore; Seasoned Timbers, Vol. 2, Heritage Trust of Nova Scotia, 1974:

Simeon Perkins came to Nova Scotia from Connecticut in 1762 and is remembered for his careful recording of life in Liverpool during the years 1766 to 1812. During the American Revolution, Perkins, a merchant and ship owner, who had suffered losses at American hands, along with others similarly engaged, fitted out privateers to raid the New England coast. The Americans retaliated by stemming the town in 1780. Perkins roused the militia and forced the raiders to withdraw. Again, during the Napoleonic Wars, Perkins and others sent privateers to the Carribean and Spanish Main. His many transactions as a merchant and privateer owner were carried out in this house.

Perkins died in 1812 at the age of 78. The Weekly Chronicle, Halifax, June 5, 1812, said of him: "His great wisdom, general knowledge, piety and benevolence, and uncommon usefulness has endeared his memory to all the inhabitants of this Settlement ... in his Legislative capacity he discovered great modesty; not forward as a speaker, yet in deciding upon any important question, he always manifested a depth of wisdom and good understanding, as one tenacious of the rights of the people, with a sacred regard to the prerogative of the Crown. In every station in this County, in which industrious application, knowledge and sound judgement were necessary, his services were wanted, and cheerfully afforded with unwearied patience, being an indefatigable servant of the Public, to the no small inconvenience and injury of his private concerns".

The house is modest in design and constructed of timber from what is now the village of Milton. Plaster was brought in one of Perkins' ships from Windsor. He moved into the house in 1767. Originally it stood in wide grounds and a lane ran down to his wharf and store on the harbourfront. The interior walls are painted today in colours mentioned by Perkins in his diary. Red used in the kitchen and on the roof was obtained from a mixture of oil and red ochre, a finish common at the time. The ochre came from small deposits in the Port Mouton area.

The last occupant of the house died in 1936 and the property was purchased by the Queens County Historical Society. In 1947 the Society deeded it to the provincial government and it is now operated by the Nova Scotia Museum.