Ryder House

Building Location: 

402 Wood Street

Whitehorse, YT

Location Context: 

This house is located within a two block section of Wood Street in which several houses dating from the early 1900’s have been maintained. Refer also to the Captain Campbell House; the  Captain Coghlan House; the Homer House


One-storey Frame House

Architectural History: 

This single-storey wood frame house has a T-shaped plan and a gabled roof. It rests on a wood sill foundation. It has a glassed-in front porch with a shed roof and a bevel siding exterior with a roof of asphalt shingles. 

In 1924 the front and rear porches were added and in 1926 the bedroom on west side was built.

Cultural History: 

In 1907, this lot was titled to Daniel Gillis, who built the house soon thereafter. Mr. Gillis was a carpenter for White Pass, and later a shopowner and tinsmith on the SE corner of Main and Second (Bank of Montreal site). 

The house was sold to Ivan B. Williams and Isaac L. Seavers in 1912. Williams was first a baggageman for White Pass, then a clerk, then a storekeeper. Seavers was variously employed in duties such as horse driver for White Pass, and electrical contractor. 

George and Edith Ryder purchased the house in 1921. George had come north in 1907 and with his father operated a scavenging, transfer and express, and wood and water dealership business. He also was a driver for White Pass in 1917, the fire chief in 1926, and the undertaker from 1930 to 1945. He sat on Whitehorse’s first City Council in 1950, the same year as his death. 

The house is still occupied by Howard Ryder. 

Members of the Ryder family own 404 Wood, on which a restaurant is located and 406 Wood Street, the Captain Campbell House. They were also the owners responsible for the demolition of the Homer house, a heritage residence previously located at 408A Wood Street.

Biographical Information: 

Roland Ryder: arrived during the gold rush, originally from Nova Scotia. Operated a Dray business (delivery using horses) transporting water. 

Ivan B. Wiliams: Originally from Magnolia, Indiana, he was employed as storekeeper. Died November 9, 1918. 

George Nelson Ryder: arrived from Hope, B.C. in 1907, purchasing the house located at 402 Wood in 1921 with his wife Edith Annie . He, like his father Roland, delivered wood, water and general freight. He cut wood at Cowley and transported it to Whitehorse by train.