W-MCP7-1.251 Hamilton Spectator clipping.
Jan 1 1969
Merger may mean loss of mansion
The city might lose control of Whitehern mansion if the parks board and recreation committee merge, the board has learned.1
Hamilton lawyer W.G. Welby, executor of the McQuesten family estate, told the board by letter that if the status of the parks board changed, the former McQuesten residence might revert under the family trust agreement to the United and Presbyterian churches.
Under the agreement the McQuesten land, house and contents are controlled by the parks board for as long as they want them
THE PARKS board gained control of Whitehern on Jackson Street in 1968 following the death of the Rev. Calvin McQuesten whose brother Tom had been a Parks board member for 28 years.
The Rev. McQuesten and two sisters who predeceased him signed an agreement leaving Whitehern to the parks board in memory of their brother.
The recently proposed merger of the recreation and parks departments has been opposed by parks board chairman Jack Pelech.
Members of the recreation committee, which has voted to support a merger, say Hamilton is the only one of its size in which the two departments are separate.
THE MATTER raised by Mr. Welby will go to board of control for possible reference to the city solicitor.
"I informed the parks board so they wouldn't forget their liability to the McQuesten family, or endanger their liability by any amalgamation" said Mr.Welby yesterday.
1 In the late 1950's, Rev. Calvin McQuesten enlisted the aid of Dr. Eric Arthur at the University of Toronto to help convince the City of Hamilton to take over the care of Whitehern. Since neither Calvin nor any of his siblings had any children, there was no immediate family to whom Whitehern could be bequeathed, and Calvin wanted to be sure that the house would survive as a monument to his family. See Box 04-111 and links for more information.