Historic Places: Hycroft Mansion | Vancouver Sun


Hycroft Manor is said to be one of Vancouver’s most haunted places

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Businessman and politician Alexander Duncan McRae (1874-1946) settled in the Vancouver area in 1907, and in 1909 he enlisted the services of West Coast architect Thomas Hooper to build Hycroft Manor for his family. Hooper was one of the most accomplished local architects of his time.

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Located in Vancouver’s First Shaughnessy neighborhood, Hycroft’s construction was completed in 1911. In addition to the three-story Edwardian mansion and shed, the property also included stables, swimming pool, tea room and Italian garden. .

The McRae family loved to entertain, and parties at Hycroft became legendary, especially New Year’s masquerade balls. Guests at their Great Gatsby-level parties held in the 1920s and 1930s included royalty, politicians and Vancouver’s social elite. If only these walls could talk, what a story they could tell.

The family left Hycroft in 1942, during World War II, and donated the mansion to the federal government for $ 1. The house was used by the Federal Department of Veterans Affairs as a convalescent hospital for veterans until 1960.

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In 1962, the University Women’s Club of Vancouver (UWCV) acquired the mansion as its clubhouse. It took five years to restore the house and grounds, but with the help of volunteers and donations, Hycroft has returned to its original splendor. Since then, Club members have taken on the role of stewards and continue to oversee the upkeep of the house and gardens.

The past still lives on at the mansion. Hycroft is considered one of the most haunted places in Vancouver. General McRae and his wife are two of the seven ghosts known to roam the 30-room mansion. But despite the large number of spirits in the house, UWCV representatives claim that they are mostly peaceful and protective of the house.


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Patrick F. Williams

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