George Colling House

George Colling’s death in 1994 ended 114 years of Colling ownership of this house.

It was built in 1880 for George’s great uncle, Emerson Colling, who sold it to his son Emerson, in 1881. Henry Colling, son of Joseph Colling Jr., purchased the house and property from his cousin, Emerson Jr. in 1885. Ten years later, Henry’s bride, Catherine Foster, moved into the house. Erland was born in1889 and an addition was built on to the house in 1900. Two years later, George was born. Hazel Fairfield came from Haliburton in 1929 to teach at Lowville School. She married George in 1931 and they had three daughters – Joan, Shirley and Pauline.

Henry gave George the house and the 50-acre lot on which it stands, in 1933.

George’s family was devasted by the loss of Shirley and her daughters, Catherine and Karen in a boating accident on Georgian Bay in August, 1965.

In 1990, George, an ardent and devoted supporter of his church, helped establish the Lowville Prayer Centre which operated for a time from his home. He did much to encourage youth involvement especially through Church camping.

In 1983, he made the first of seven trips to Weardale, County Durham, England from whence his great grandparents, Joseph Colling and Jane Featherstone, and their seven children left for Upper Canada in 1822. Along with a group from Lowville, George presented a plaque to “High House”, a Methodist Chapel in Ireshopeburn commemorating the relationship between the two communities.

Although subsequent owners and others have sensed a friendly ghost in this house, the family doesn’t know who it might be.


Contributing Author: Helen Callaway