Plaqued Houses and Buildings
Address:
214 William Street - Barclay House
Summary:
214 William Street was also known as "Barclay House" or "Ferndale" and was constructed in 1855 by John Barclay.
Property Details:
214 William Street, also known as The Barclay House or "Ferndale", was first constructed in 1855 by John Barclay. It was later owned by the Marlatt and Ryrie families.

John Barclay was a very important figure in the development of Oakville. He was born in Paisley, Scotland, in 1820, a son of Matthew Barclay. Matthew brought his family to North America in 1832 and settled briefly in the Markham area before moving to Trafalgar Township at about the same time as his neighbour, James Arnott. John Barclay married Arnott's daughter, Jean (sometimes Jane) Scotland Arnott. They had six children. In 1847, Barclay became the Assistant Postmaster. In 1849, he became the Superintendent of the Sabbath School at the Presbyterian Church which was on William Street at the time. He held that position for 45 years, and was an elder and Session Clerk for over 30. In 1853, he established his own business as a general merchant on the northeast corner of Thomas and Lakeshore. In 1856, he signed a petition "praying that Oakville may become a separate municipality". This led to the Act of Provincial Parliament incorporating Oakville as a Town in 1857 with a population of about 2000. Barclay represented Ward 3, north of Lakeshore, east of the creek on Council and was Mayor from 1867 to 1870. In 1859, he became a wool buyer in addition to his activities in the grain trade.

In 1868, his business burned to the ground. He was partly insured, and moved into new quarters in the Romain block on the southeast corner of Navy and Lakeshore. In 1883 that burned as well. He was living upstairs and rebuilt. In 1889 he retired and his son, Robert, took over. He died in 1900. A stained glass window at Knox Presbyterian Church is dedicated to him and his wife.

John built this house in 1855, and lived here until 1874, when it was sold to Stafford Marlatt (married to Mandana Elizabeth Triller) who named his new home "Ferndale." He and his family moved across the street into what had been his father-in-law's house.

Stafford D. Marlatt (1830-1908) was born in Grimsby. He bought a large part of the Triller farm in Nelson Township where he farmed for years before he became a general merchant and grain buyer in Bronte. He had two sons, Wilbur Triller Marlatt and Cecil Gustavus Marlatt.

It was later sold to James Ryrie, the father of Harry Ryrie and father-in-law of Ann Ryrie.
Click to Enlarge
214 WIlliam Street, 2020214 WIlliam Street, 2020
214 WIlliam Street Plaque214 WIlliam Street Plaque
John BarclayJohn Barclay
"Ferndale" 214 William Street
214 William Street, 1890s214 William Street, 1890s
Stafford Dean Marlatt (1830-1908)Stafford Dean Marlatt (1830-1908)