AUCHMAR ROUND TABLE – organized by Councillor Terry Whitehead
A group is being formed to look at preserving the Auchmar Estate and keeping the estate in public hands.

When: Tuesday June 16th at 4:00pm
Where: City Hall Room 192

If you have any interest at all in ensuring that another of Hamilton’s significant architectural landmarks doesn’t fade away please plan to attend Tuesday’s meeting and ask others to attend.


The estate of the Honourable Isaac Buchanan is a vital part of Hamilton’s history. In the opinion of many, Buchanan was more important than Allan MacNab. Selling off the Auchmar estate is akin to selling Dundurn Castle.

Over the years the Auchmar estate was visited by Sir John A. Macdonald, Sir Allan MacNab, Pope John Paul II when he was a Cardinal and the Prince of Wales during an 1860 royal visit. Auchmar still stands on 10 acres of the original eighty-six acres, that Buchanan named Clairmont Park. The Auchmar estate became known as a focus for entertaining their guests ranging from quiet visits from Governors’ General and politicians to the hosting of the local black community for an Emancipation Day picnic on August 1, 1859. This latter event was attended by an estimated 600 people. This was the 25th anniversary of the emancipation of the slaves by Britain. Buchanan called for a “co-operative scheme with the south for the abolition of slavery by 1900.”

The manor house is considered an elegant example of gothic revival architecture with arched windows, several chimneys, gables, and most importantly a cultural landscape.

Around about 1999 the Auchmar Estate was purchased by DeSantis Homes for approximately two million dollars, but later that year and following a meeting with Mr. DeSantis and Councillor William McCulloch a swap of Auchmar for serviced city lands on the east mountain was discussed. That same year Mr. DeSantis and Councillor agreed to the swap and the City of Hamilton took ownership of the Auchmar Estate. The entire nine (9) acre Auchmar Estate was then designated by Hamilton City Council under Part IV of the Ontario Heritage Act. That same year, the Ontario Heritage Foundation (now the Ontario Heritage Trust) placed a binding provincial easement on Auchmar.

It is the hope of the Friends of Auchmar and other like minded individuals that the Auchmar Estate, Hamilton Mountain’s historical and architectural treasure with its manor house, dovecote, stables, walled gardens with a unique cultural landscape will remain in public ownership in order to continue to serve as one of Hamilton’s architectural landmarks for the citizens of Hamilton, of Ontario and for tourists from Canada and the world for many years to come.

Let’s not let another significant architectural landmark fade away!