MacKenzie Log Home
Can you imagine living in a two2-bedroom home with nine children and two parents? That is exactly what the MacKenzie family did in the 1800s. Around 1850, the Donald MacKenzie family–with nine children–built a log home in Kinloss Township, southern Bruce County. More than a century later, the Women’s Institutes of Bruce County purchased the house. In 1958, they had it moved to the grounds of the Bruce County Museum, where it still enthralls visitors with a sense of the past. Step onto the narrow porch, and notice the thickness of the log walls as you pass through the low doorway. You can feel the warmth of the wood fire, appreciate the time and labour in the rag rug on the floor, and touch the furnishings worn smooth by years of use.
Log School House – S.S. No. 10 Amabel
Right next door to the former MacKenzie home, step back in time in a one-room schoolhouse. S.S. 10 Amabel was built in 1875, used as a school until 1892, and used for many purposes until it was purchased as a centennial project by Bruce County’s elementary school teachers in 1967. Reconstruction of S.S. 10 took place at the Bruce County Museum. It serves as a setting for numerous groups of students to experience the old-time ways of learning.
A giant 15-foot-high helix made from the anchor chain of an 1866 schooner rises majestically on an outdoor alcove representing the rejuvenation of our local history. This unique double-helix sculpture is the brainchild of Mike Sterling of Southampton, one of many volunteers from the Southampton Propeller Club who value and honour the marine heritage along the Lake Huron and Georgian Bay coasts. The chain was originally salvaged along the lakeshore near MacGregor Point. It came from the 120-foot schooner, AZOV, which sprang a leak on October 12, 1911. The captain and crew abandoned ship and the schooner drifted across Lake Huron as a ghost ship, finally coming aground at MacGregor Point.
Stokes Bay Range Light
Once located at Stokes Bay, on the Bruce Peninsula, the 103-year-old range light was saved from destruction when it was decommissioned by the Canadian Coast Guard. In April 2010, the range light moved to its home at the Museum overlooking Fairy Lake, where volunteers spent the summer season restoring it. The original structure consisted of a three-tiered, tapered steel frame, surmounted by a wood watch room and lantern, standing 22.6 meters high. The wooden watch room was saved from destruction when the Canadian Coast Guard made the decision to decommission it and was transported to Southampton in December 2009. In April 2010 it was moved to its home at the Museum, overlooking Fairy Lake. A team of volunteers spent hundreds of hours restoring it. The watch room is clad in cedar shingles and flares at its top into a coved cornice supporting a gallery and wood lantern, itself capped with a pyramidal roof and vent stack. The light tower is painted white, and features contrasting red elements and a day marker on its front face.
The Museum is grateful to the staff at Bruce County, MacGregor Point Provincial Park, the residents of Stokes Bay and our many volunteers, for saving this historical landmark.