It’s funny how you can live in a house for years and still discover new things about it. Donna Hurry had always loved her home in Charlottetown, Canada—but recently she unearthed a secret hidden in its walls, one out of sight for decades.
Hurry was doing renovations on her home. She was working in the hallway when she noticed a stray piece of wallpaper, so she decided to tear it off. The wall underneath was exposed for the first time since she had lived there.
She didn’t think anything of it—until she noticed something unusual. There seemed to be handwriting on the wall.
She pulled back the wallpaper further—and saw more and more words appearing.
As Hurry tore down the wallpaper, it suddenly became clear.
There was a message written on the wall, hidden for decades by the wallpaper.
Hurry was stunned that something like this could be hidden in plain sight from her all these years.
And then she read the letter… and realized it was for her!
It was a message from a previous occupant to the next owner of the house.
The message was dated 50 years ago, and the author praised the old house, wishing the next generation will find a good home in it as well.
In this Last Testimonial, I, Cyril Beverley Armstrong, do hereby state that this household was well pleased with this sound lodging. I, my father HB, mother EG, brothers Nigel and Michael, my sisters, Wendy, Daphne, and Heather also share in my opinions. I wish that this coming generation of family will also fully reach enjoyment here. It does my heart good to see an old home have precedence over a new one. Yours, Home Sweet Home.
The kind message meant a lot to Hurry—knowing somebody once appreciated the house as much as she did now.
“It was very sentimental to me that somebody took the time out and wrote that, when we love this place so much and you could tell that this person loved the house so much, too,” she told CBC. “It really meant a lot.”
“I think the person that lived here knew that you had to put a lot of work into an older home to live here, so that that meant a lot to me, too.”
She was especially touched by the note’s sign-off:
“Home Sweet Home, because you really feel at home here and you knew somebody that lived here before you felt the same way.”
Hurry decided to track down the note’s author and show it to them, to let them know what it meant to her and that it had been found all these decades later.
And, remarkably, the search turned out to not be too difficult. She realized she knew the Armstrong family who were the previous occupants.
Cyril Armstrong, now 65, was invited to his former home to see his uncovered message.
Cyril was surprised to hear the message was found all these decades later.
“I didn’t know if it would be seen in my lifetime or not,” he told CBC.
He said that he had snuck the message in while he was applying wallpaper with his mother.
“There was that free wall and I thought, ‘My gosh, here’s my time. Here’s my place and I’m darn well going to do this.”
And when he read his words, he laughed in recognition—it was definitely his style.
“That would be typical of me,” he joked to CBC. “I couldn’t just say, ‘Date. Time. Cyril.'”
“No, I’d have to have this long sort of Shakespearean soliloquy stuck on the wall.”
It’s a long message—but now it’s not going anywhere.
“I’m glad that it’s here and I’m going to preserve it,” Hurry told the CBC, saying she wasn’t going to reapply wallpaper over it.
Cyril’s message was there to stay, maybe to inspire yet another generation of homeowners.