Cliff Cottage

Cliff Cottage - The Four Houses

Cliff Cottage, the four houses.

Through the trees growing on the cliffs of Cacouna, overlooking the St. Lawrence River, four small houses can still be seen.  It was in 1865 that Andrew Thomson, a lumber merchant and banker from Quebec City, had these cottages built for the use of family and friends.
He chose an experienced architect, Edward Staveley, who had also drawn the plans for his residence in Quebec City, Bijou.  Joseph Martin, a local carpenter, constructed the four houses of squared logs on solid stone foundations.  These Picturesque cottages are identical in every way, with their wide french doors opening onto galleries to better appreciate the natural setting.

Photo source :
Postcard. S. Belle, édit., Fraserville, P.Q., Yves Lebel Collection


Outdoor Activities at Cliff Cottage

Outdoor activities at Cliff Cottage.

The Thomson, Cook, Hamilton and Fry families spent numerous summers here, enjoying tennis, croquet and other outdoor activities on the grounds in front of the four cottages.  Other  summer pastimes, such as canoeing, swimming and walking, pleasantly passed the days.

Photo source :
The Jones’ Family Collection


Relaxing in Front of Cliff Cottage

Relaxing in front of Cliff Cottage.

The owners of these cottages were influential figures in the Church, in the field of education or in shipping. Reverend John Cook, Mr. Thomson's father-in-law, was Moderator of the Presbyterian Church of Canada, while his brother-in-law, Reverend Charles Hamilton, was Bishop of Ottawa, and Metropolitan for the Anglican Church of Canada as of 1912.  Henry Fry, of Quebec City, was an appraiser, contractor, writer and prominent figure in the shipping industry.

Photo source :
The Jones’ Family Collection


Cliff Cottage Today

Cliff Cottage, today.

To this day, the essential harmony of this group of houses remains intact, despite renovations to the galleries and small additions built to meet the needs of successive generations.  Descendants of the Cook and Thomson families continue to spend their summers at Cliff Cottage.

Photo source:
Photo: Yvan Roy, 2015




Excerpt of
The Extended Tour

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