Built in 1900, the house was originally located in the north end of town on the northeast corner of Front and Albert Streets. According to records from the Dawson City Museum, its first owners were involved in the mining industry; subsequent owners used the building as a family residence and a boarding house.
One of the building's most notable owners was Margaret Vera Dorval, known by locals as Bombay Peggy. The nickname originates from Dorval's wartime experiences in Shanghai, China, where an aviator boyfriend reportedly dropped gifts for her from the bomb bay doors of his aircraft.
Bombay Peggy acquired the north end house in the early 1940s to run her bootlegging business and brothel. Throughout her tenure as owner, she had thoughts of transforming the space into a dining club or an art gallery, but ultimately, it remained a place where a working girl could rent a room and an old timer could drink his whiskey in peace.
When current proprietress Wendy Cairns purchased the house in 1998, it was sinking into the swamp and rotting from the bottom up. However, its derelict condition could not hide its unique beauty, nor could it erase the years of local lore that were packed within its walls. After a cross-town move to Second Avenue and Princess Street and fourteen months of construction and restoration work, the building began its new life as an historic inn and pub.
In the spring of 2000, an official opening for Bombay Peggy's was held, and Father Tim Coonen of St. Mary's Catholic Church, performed a blessing ceremony for "the old whorehouse." It was a celebration of the new beginning and life for the beloved house, steeped in the tough but generous spirit of its namesake and the city of Dawson.
Bombay Peggy's is proud to sponsor local non-profit organizations, whose work contributes to the social, cultural and economic life of our town. We have strong relationships with the Dawson City Music Festival, the Klondike Institute of Art and Culture, the Dawson City Short Film Festival, the Dawson City Museum, the Percy Dewolfe Memorial Mail run, the Humane Society, the conservation society and the local radio station. The programs and services offered by these organizations make Dawson a wonderful place to live and visit.
We support local and regional artists by providing display space and selling select works, and by contributing what we can to arts events. We also love live music and provide local and visiting musicians with a performance venue that is both intimate and welcoming. Live music is featured in the Pub most Saturday nights.
You can rest assured that our green policy is one thing that is not historic at Bombay Peggy's. We employ the following practices in an effort to protect the very special place we call home: