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Common Name Sheave Tower
Municipal Address Old Mill Road

Building Demolished No
Neighbourhood Blair
Local Municipality Cambridge
Province Ontario
Construction Date 1876
Type of Recognition Provincial Designation
Project Name Point of View
Building Historic Use Industry Power Generation Facility
Building Current Use Leisure Historic or Interpretive Site
Building Form
Massing Units Single Detached Single Detached
Plan Square/Rectangular Square/Rectangular
Wings Either Side Either Side
Storeys 2 1/2 2 1/2
Main Exterior Wall
Basement / Foundation Wall Material Brick or Block Brick or Block
Wood Structure Vertical Log or Plank Vertical Log or Plank
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ST Wood Exterior
ST Wood Exterior. © Jennifer Danahy

Roof shape and Detail
Roof Type Gable Gable
Roof Surface Material Wood Wood
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ST Roof Surface
ST Roof Surface. © Jennifer Danahy

Roof Trim - Eaves Plain Plain
Roof Trim - Verges Plain Plain
Typical Window
Structural Opening Pointed/Arched Pointed/Arched
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ST Upper Window
ST Upper Window. © Jennifer Danahy

ST Window
ST Window. © Jennifer Danahy

Structural & Decorative Form Slip-Sill Slip-Sill
Main Entrance
Location Centre (facade) Centre (facade)
Structural Opening Flat Flat
Entrance Special Features 1 Leaf 1 Leaf
Entrance Stair Ground Floor Ground Floor
Property Features
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ST Bridge
ST Bridge. © Jennifer Danahy

Landscape Water Water, Trees Trees
Architect Allan Bowman
Notes on the Design or Physical Value -LAW NO. 122-94 OF THE CORPORATION OF THE CITY OF CAMBRIDGE HISTORICAL DESCRIPTION: The building was constructed by Allan Bowman in 1876. The Sheave Tower is a unique example of Carpenter Gothic architecture. It was one of the smallest water projects in the area as well as the first water wheel operation to use mill race water twice. Built as an auxiliary mill shed it housed a water-powered turbine that helped grind grain at the Carlisle Grist Mill (Blair Mill) located more than 300 feet away. It is the only remaining structure of its kind in the region and represents a part of the history of the Milling industry important to the development of Waterloo Region. For generations it has been a popular subject for local artists. ARCHITECTURAL DESCRIPTION: The Sheave Tower is a wood frame structure approximately two and one half (2 1/2) storeys in height, pyramid shaped and clad in board and batten with a cedar shingle gable roof. Three (3) of the four (4) tower walls sit upon the millrace house; the southern wall spans the channel. There are pointed arch Gothic windows on each face of the tower as well as on the attached lean-to-
Notes on History of the Property -power a second time before it flowed toward the Grand River. As water twisted the turbine under the tower, a series of gears and shafts spun a large steel wheel (sheave) near the peaked roof. Like a giant laundry line with a cable looped around two wheels, water power was transferred from the small tower to the main mill. It'
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Sheave in Operation 1910
Sheave in Operation 1910

Statement of Significance
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Last updated 2014-01-25 14:05:04.701
Added By cmcavoy
Date Added April 5, 2012
Last Modified By HRC Admin
Date Last Modified January 25, 2014
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