2 Poet’s Cottage
6 Alexander Terrace
Poet’s Cottage was built in 1849 by John Lee Archer and originally intended for one of George IV’s illegitimate sons.
Meg named Poet’s Cottage after her second husband, the poet Lin Eldridge, who bought the cottage in 1970. Before then it was known variously as ‘Ivy Cottage’, being covered with ivy, or, during its blue period, ‘that blue house’.
The home is now owned privately by the great granddaughter of Edward Curr, first chief colonial agent to the Van Diemen’s Land Company, formed in London in 1825, and headquartered in Stanley to establish a fine merino wool industry.
As the colonial architect for Van Diemen’s Land, John Lee Archer was responsible for many of Tasmania’s important government buildings including Parliament House, Hobart. When the town of Stanley was officially created in 1842 (so named after the Secretary of State for the Colonies, Lord Stanley), Lee Archer had a change of career and was appointed police magistrate for the Circular Head district. During his ten-year tenure here he also helped design the town and mapped the streets of the thriving commercial seaport. You can see copies of these maps at the Discovery Museum up the road.
John Lee Archer lived in the two-storey home with his wife, Sophia, and their eight children. His descendants believe that he died in the house on 4th December, 1852. You can visit his final resting place at the Stanley Burial Ground further along Meg’s walk.
Later it served as a small, private school for boys and girls.
Listen to the story of this location while you walk
Explore the Stanley Heritage Walk route on our map of the region
Images gathered from Meg’s personal albums and other historical sources