Earnscliffe

Earnscliffe, built in 1857 for Thomas MacKinnon, a successful businessman, was one of Ottawa's most impressive mansions of the mid-19th century.

Earnscliffe, built in 1857 for Thomas MacKinnon, a successful businessman, was one of Ottawa's most impressive mansions of the mid-19th century. Designed in a Gothic revival style, its asymmetrical plan, medieval window moldings, and multigabled roof accented by an ornately carved bargeboard provide an unusually elaborate interpretation of this style. Its picturesque quality is enhanced by its spectacular site on top of the limestone cliffs overlooking the Ottawa River. Earnscliffe has seen a succession of distinguished residents. Between 1871 and 1891 it was the home of Sir John A. Macdonald, and since 1930 it has served as the official residence of the British high commissioner to Canada.