Cape Breton's Magazine

> Issue 57 > Page 32 - Company Houses in "Kolonia"

Page 32 - Company Houses in "Kolonia"

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1991/6/1 (347 reads)

The housing shortage in Sydney was very severe during the eariy years of the twentieth century. Headlines that appeared in the Syd? ney Dally Post, August 25,1902, proclaimed "MORE HOUSES RE? QUIRED" and "New Comers Cannot be Accommodated." As late as April 21,1913, the Sydney Daily Post announced "3225 IMMI? GRANTS CAME HERE LAST YEAR." During these years rent was high and company housing would be a reasonable solution. On Feb? ruary 17,1903, the newspapers noted: "People are beginning to move into the new houses, erected by the Steel Co., on Pari< Street. Notwithstanding the number of families moving into the company houses, there are many who cannot secure desireable locations in Sydney. High rents still rule, and apartments on Commonwealth Ave. in Boston are cheap compared to houses on side alleys in town." with the Dziubek family of 15 Ferris Street • Ann and Steve Dziubek and their son Joe. As was mentioned eariier in the paper, Steve ar? rived in Sydney from Poland in June of 1930 and lived with his broth? er Joseph on 7 Fenris Street. These are some of their recollections. All homes in Kolonia were occupied by Polish and Ukrainian families. Wooden shingles covered the roof and the outside walls. The houses did not have basements under them, only a crawl space in which the coal was stored. To obtain coal for the stoves, it was necessary to go outdoors and enter the crawl space through a small hatch. There were no indoor toilets. Outhouses were built behind the homes on 12' X 24' concrete foundations, the remains of which can still be seen in the backyards on Ferris Street. The outhouses were cleaned on a weekly basis by steel company employees who hauled the waste to South Bar to be used on a farm. From a 1913 social survey of the City of Sydney compiled for the Boards of Temperance and Social Services: "Houses for wori
Cape Breton's Magazine
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