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Page last updated April 14, 2014

© Michael Kluckner

A derelict building called the Anders Roadhouse which now serves chiefly as a billboard structure for the Ford dealership in Quesnel. It's a classic "saltbox" with a straight front facade, two storeys of windows on the front, and a collapsed dormer on the rear roof pitch. It stands by the side of the highway about 5 km. north of the Fort Alexandria historic cairn. Does anyone have more detailed information about it?

It was getting late in the evening on a summer day in 2003 when I stopped, and I regret not spending more time painting a better watercolour of it. I haven't been back since ....

Further investigation, in A Tribute to the Past by the Old Age Pensioners' Organization,  indicates that this was the 183 Mile roadhouse owned by W.J. "Buckshot" Anders, whose main occupation was threshing for farmers between Soda Creek and Quesnel. It comprised a small farm, store and change-stop for the BX stages. This appears in my book, Vanishing British Columbia, on page 178.

From Valerie McDougall, 2014: My grandparents owned this house - both are now deceased, but they raised their 4 daughters in the house - the oldest daughter is my mother. I have fond memories of this house when I was little - I am now 52. My grandparents lived in the house up until about 1973, when they moved into a "new" house across the highway on their land. Thanks for the pictures- it is sad to see it go downhill. One wishes there was a large pot of money to save these homes.
And, from Audrey Niehaus (Aiken): My daughter just sent me the link to your paintings and story of the Anders house. I would just like to give you some information about the family  who owned the house for 80 some years. My grandmother,  Ada Littlewood Broughton  was married to the Anders nephew and when he died, I guess she and their son inherited the farm. Ada married my grandfather, Frank Edward Aiken, who was a BC Provincial Policeman in 1913 in Lytton. They had two boys, my father Edward Francis Aiken, born in 1914 and Leslie Johnson Aiken, born in 1916. My father farmed the place until his death in 1974, and my mother remained until her death in 1991.
Sadly we had to sell the farm in 1992, none of the family wanted to farm. It has been so neglected, the barn collapsed several years ago the the house is starting to collapse as well. A few years ago the present owners allowed us into the old house and we got pieces of the original oil cloth that was on the walls in the lower and upper hallway. The stairs and banisters were still intact. The crap apple trees and the lilacs were planted by the Anders and they live on. I have so many great memories of a wonderful life in the "Anders House". The actual Anders store was dismantled by my father and was  rebuilt across the highway and still stands today.
The story that the house was used as a party house was not true. We have a copy of the Anders House painted by Brawyn Pattenaude of Quesnel.

Note from Alan Paul, 2011: I have some info on the house in your pics on the ghost town website. The Anders house was built in 1896 by Master Builder John Mackin. It was a roadhouse stop for the BX Stagecoaches. I have a lot more info if you are interested, including a description of the interior circa 1904 when the Pauline Johnson room was named. The pics are awesome, I have never been inside, just rode along by it with my parents and always wondered about it. I made it a mission to find out about it with great success, so if you are interested in anymore info just ask.

Note and photos from a correspondent requesting anonymity, 2009: I have always thought that house was so cool. I grew up in Quesnel and remember passing by it when I was little and thinking it was really neat. It was last summer that my friend and I went and tried to explore it a bit. It is really run down, the top floor is collapsing into the bottom, and there is a large hole cut in the front door. We took a few pictures, but did not want to risk the house falling on us, so it wasn't nearly as in-depth as we would have liked. Also, the woman from next door chased us off, lol. There is still a lot of furniture in the house, and when you go around back you can see up into the 2nd floor. The old wooden stairs in the house are beautiful! Not sure what is up with the gate 1/3rd of the way down tho, weird.

My mom says that back in the 70's, when she was a teenager, the house was used by local teens as a party place, because it was too far out of town for the police to come and break up the fun. Well one night there was a big party there, and a car full of kids left and were going back to Quesnel and on the really big corner (I think just after Kersely) they hit a fuel tanker truck and it exploded on the highway and all the kids were killed. The police had the highway shut down and none of the parents could get through to find out if their kids were alright, and none of the kids on the other side of the accident could get home.

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Artwork and text ©Michael Kluckner, 2001, 2002, 2003