In 1879, Ledingham Cottage was built by Reverend Gallagher, and it had several owners over the years. The cottage received its name from the Ledingham family who lived there the longest and were the last to occupy it as a summer residence. Over time, the surrounding Methodist Camp evolved into an amusement park which eventually faded away, and the summer cottages became permanent year-round homes.
Earlier on in 1846, John Beamer Bowslaugh, a devout Methodist, offered the use of a grove along the shores of Lake Ontario, for a giant temperance meeting. In 1859, a summer revival took place and they carried this tradition on for 16 years, except in 1862.
In 1874, Noah Phelps had a dream of building a community modeled on the new Methodist Camp at Chautauqua, New York. By 1875, John Bowslaugh deeded 12.5 acres to the Methodists. The Ontario Methodist Camp Ground Company was established with Noah Phelps as the first president. Fifty cottages were subsequently built quite close together on the original tent sites and were adorned with fretwork. Many cottages were built by Edward Bowslaugh (brother of John Bowslaugh). Typically, they were 1.5 stories, many with small balconies off the bedrooms on the second floor, just like Ledingham Cottage.
The Grimsby Historical Society, archives and brochures (call for availability), are located at the Carnegie Commons Building. They are available by phone or for a visit on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 8:30 am - 12 noon or by appointment.
Private Residence, not open to the public
252 Lake Street