The L.A. Lovett House
126 Main Street
In 1900, Lawrence Arthur Lovett, Esq., a 27 year old lawyer from Kentville, purchased a property on Main Street in Liverpool from Nathaniel S. Wetmore. Mr. Wetmore had bought the property two years earlier through a Sheriff's sale which was selling the house to pay the debts of Mr. Herbert H. Wetmore. Both Wetmores were merchants in the town, with Nathaniel's stores located in the Forbes' Block, and Herbert's in the Knaut's Block, both on Main Street.
L.A. Lovett attended Acadia and Dalhousie Universities, graduating with his law degree in 1895. He was practicing in Liverpool in 1898, when a notice in the Liverpool Advance noted that he and his brother, H. Lovett, had had a telephone installed in their offices. In 1899, he was apparently operating his practice alone, as another note in the Advance tells us that he has moved his offices to McNutt's Block.
The year !900 was a busy one for Mr. Lovett. After purchasing his property on main street, he promptly had the dwelling removed, and engaged Mr. Arthur Boucher ("Bowcher") to construct a new home, as described in the July 11, 1900 edition of the Advance:
"L.A. Lovett has purchased the property on Main street, formerly owned by H.H. Wetmore, and is having a two-storey dwelling house with French roof erected thereon. Arthur Boucher is builder."
(Note: Mr. Boucher was a well know as a carpenter, shipbuilder, master builder, designer and contractor for a large number of vessels and buildings in Queens County. Over a fifty year period, he was superintendent for the building of the Liverpool Town Hall, Alton House and the Masonic Hall in Caledonia, the Mersey Hotel and its predecessors the Tully and the Thorndyke, the Congregational Church built in 1896, the Old Post Office, and the town's first power dam at the Guzzle above Milton. Later, as a shipbuilder, he built a 1000-ton dredging barge for a Halifax Company and the largest wooden vessel ever constructed in Liverpool, the steamship War Halifax completed in 1919.)
On August 15, at 10 o'clock in the morning at St. James Church in Kentville, Nova Scotia, L.A. Lovett married Miss Evelyn Blanchard Gifkins, only daughter of Percy Gifkins, General Manager of the Dominion Atlantic Railway. A substantial wedding announcement in the Advance made reference to "the general unanimous wish of the company's servants to present Miss Gifkins" with "drawing room furnishings, including piano, etc., and an exquisitely painted tablet bearing an appropriate inscription." Gushing descriptions of costumes and decorations are punctuated by references to "the warm respect and honor in which her father is held by everybody who knows him, and is associated with him."
Being husband to the only daughter of such a fellow as Mr. Gifkins could not have been easy, particularly as the mortgages for his new home in Liverpool accumulated. In 1904, L.A. sold his home to his father-in-law for $900, and removed to Sydney, Nova Scotia where he practiced for 7 years. In 1906, the house was transferred back to L.A. from Mr. Gifkins for the sum of $1, and the in the following year was sold at Sheriff's Auction for the second time in 10 years.
Mr. Lovett moved to London, England in 1911 after being made King's Council, where he practiced until 1918 when he returned to Halifax. There he became a partner in the firm McInnes, Jenks, Lovett, Fulton, and Kenney. He was a "staunch member of the Liberal Party" and a director of several of Canada's leading institutions, including the Bank of Nova Scotia. The passing of Mr. Lovett, on February 11, 1947 in Annapolis Royal, was announced on the front page of The Halifax Herald. The obituary notes the "LA.... figured as trial lawyer in practically all important non-criminal cases in Nova Scotia."
The Lovetts had two children, Olive and Percy Arthur (named for his father and grandfather). Percy became a partner in a consulting engineering firm in Halifax, and died in 1988. His widow placed several pages from the family bible in the Public Archives of Nova Scotia.