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George Street United Church Municipal Heritage Building

St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, A1C, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1989/07/21

View of the eastern facade, Buchanan Street, George Street United Church.  Photo taken June 8, 2007.; Deborah O'Rielly/ HFNL 2007
Side facade, George Street United Church
View of the main facade, taken from George Street. Photo taken June 2007.; Lara Maynard/ HFNL 2007
Main Facade, George Street United Church
View of stained glass windows as seen on the western facade.  Photo taken June 8, 2007.; Deborah O'Rielly HFNL 2007
Stained glass windows, George Street United Church

Other Name(s)


Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2008/11/25

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

Built in 1873, George Street United Church is the oldest Methodist church in St. John’s. It is a stone church built in the Gothic Revival style of architecture by Elijah Hoole. This designation is confined to the footprint of the building.

Heritage Value

George Street United Church is designated as a Municipal Heritage Building due to its architectural and historical values.

George Street United Church is architecturally valuable as a fine example of a modified Gothic Revival church. Constructed of local stone quarried from the Southside Hills, the entire building is sheathed in concrete. Despite this, many typical Gothic elements remain intact including the pointed arch lancet windows and the large stained glass windows. Furthermore, the interior of this church is architecturally valuable for its well-preserved woodwork. The exposed timber hammerbeam roof of the nave is a typical Gothic element.

George Street United Church is also architecturally valuable for its association with British architect, Elijah Hoole. Hoole was a well known architect whose other works include Gower Street United Church in St. John’s. George Street United Church was built by local master builder William Campbell and locally known mason Richard Atwill.

George Street United Church is historically valuable as the oldest Methodist Church in St. John’s. Built in 1873, George Street United Church is one of the only churches in the downtown area to survive the Great Fire of 1892. This Church is also historically valuable because on August 5, 1874 it was the site of the Organizational Assembly of the First Methodist Conference. Up until this point, Newfoundland had been a district of the Conference of Eastern British America. Reverend George Mulligan, as Superintendent Minister of the St. John’s circuit and the principal minister of George Street Church, was elected first President of the new conference at this meeting.

Source: City of St. John's, meeting held 1989/07/21

Character-Defining Elements

All those elements that are representative of the ecclesiastical Gothic Revival style of architecture, including:
-stained glass windows;
-hammerbeam roof;
-interior woodwork;
-stone construction;
-concrete sheathing;
-turrets at West end of church;
-kicked eaves; and,
-cruciform layout.



Newfoundland and Labrador

Recognition Authority

City of St. John's

Recognition Statute

City of St. John's Act

Recognition Type

City of St. John's Heritage Building, Structure, Land or Area

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Building Social and Community Life
Religious Institutions

Function - Category and Type



Religion, Ritual and Funeral
Religious Facility or Place of Worship

Architect / Designer

Elijah Hoole


Richard Atwill

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

City of St. John's Archives

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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