Farnham Town Hall

Rebuilt after a fire

The town hall, the fire brigade and the police

Photo of the Town Hall when the police and fire services were all under the same roof.

The town hall before 1911

Before the fire of 1911, the Public Market was on the ground floor.

Jail cells

Photo of the old prison cells located in the basement of the town hall.

Photo of the Mayors of the Town of Farnham

The mayors of Farnham, before 1938.

Text version of the audio

NARRATOR (female voice)
We’re now in front of the site of the City of Farnham’s first town hall, formerly known as the Village of West Farnham. It was built towards the end of 1872 by Norbert Robidoux, a village hotel owner, for the sum of $1,690. (!) 
NARRATOR (male voice)
Did you know that our present town hall was built on the site of an old local public market? The first Town Council meetings were held in the market’s main hall. This would be the case for more than ten years, well before the first town hall was built.
NARRATOR (female voice)
The first building was destroyed by the great fire of July 1911. Its reconstruction, the one you can see today, began the following year, in 1912.
NARRATOR (male voice)
Following the fire, a Farnham citizen, Napoléon Roy, was entrusted with the task of drawing up the plans and specifications for the new building. These would also include a police department, a firehouse and a number of housing units occupied by municipal employees.

In order to accommodate the village, and also to be able to hold meetings, the municipal offices were relocated inside a building rented to them on the rue Principale; In fact, a certain Mr. Bessette agreed to rent part of his building to the municipality for one year … for the modest sum of $18… When the town hall’s reconstruction was completed, the first council meeting was held in the new building in May 1913.

NARRATOR (female voice)
Although the interior of the town hall has undergone several transformations over the years, many original elements have been preserved. These include part of the metal ceilings, and part of the foundation of the first town hall, the original vault, traces of the housing units on the third floor, and of the former prison cells located in the basement.

As for the police department and the firehouse, these were moved to new, more spacious buildings in 1991. The vacant space has since been occupied by the present municipal library.

Extract of
City of Farnham Historical Tour

City of Farnham Historical Tour image circuit

Presented by : Ville de Farnham

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