History - Alberton Museum
The building that currently houses the Alberton Museum, located at 457 Church Street, was originally the Alberton Courthouse. Following the passage of the Prince Edward Island County Courts Act in 1873, six circuit courthouses were built around the province. The Alberton Courthouse was built in 1878 by the company of James Wiggins & Sons. This building served in the capacity of a courthouse until court services were moved to the former Fielding School, located on Dufferin Street, in 1978.
The Alberton Museum was established in 1964 by Mrs. W.R. Oulton. At first, the museum consited of the private collection of Mrs. Oulton who housed this collection in her barn. The museum would develop and would eventually move to its present location in the old town courthouse in 1980. The building is a National Historic site and a Designated Provincial Historic site. The museum currently contains displays of artifacts of early residents, many local photos illustrating the history of Alberton and its inhabitants, and extensive genealogical information on area families. It is also home to the West Prince Genealogy Centre.
The building itself if of great historical and architectural significance. It stands at a height of one and one half stories. It was one of two courthouses which contained a jail (located in the basement) and two large front windows. The only other town to have a courthouse similar in style to this was in Souris, in eastern PEI. However, this courthouse has not survived.