Description of Historic Place
The General Manager’s House, also known as Building 20, faces a large, open yard in the Bear Creek Compound, a historic, non-operating, placer gold mining facility in the Klondike River valley. The building consists of both log and wood-frame construction that is clad in horizontal wood siding and topped by a metal covered, gable roof. The gable end facing the yard has a front verandah, deep roof overhang and wood brackets. The main entry is off a screened porch on the building’s east side. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.
The General Manager’s House is a Recognized Federal Heritage Building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental values.
The General Manager’s House, as part of the Bear Creek complex, is closely associated with the corporate phase of Yukon’s gold mining history. The building is one of the oldest structures at the site; and, as such, is linked to the Canadian Klondike Mining Company’s operations, as well as to those of the Yukon Consolidated Gold Corporation that took over the building in the 1930s. The building is also a prominent example of residential development at the village-like mining facility.
The General Manager’s House displays good aesthetic design, and is a typical example of log construction in the Dawson City area. Its front verandah, screened porch and overhanging gable roof supported on brackets, give the building a residential expression. Of good functional design, the building was successfully adapted to meet changing needs at the Bear Creek complex. The log construction and wood-frame structure exhibit good craftsmanship and the appropriate use of materials, including the wood siding and metal covered roof.
The General Manager’s House maintains an unchanged relationship to its site and reinforces the character of its industrial setting at the Bear Creek Compound. The structure is familiar to those within the immediate area.
Sources: Joan Mattie, Bear Creek Industrial Complex, Bear Creek, Yukon, Federal Heritage Buildings Review Office, Building Report 89-008; General Manager’s Residence (Building 20), Bear Creek Compound, Yukon, Heritage Character Statement, 89-008.
The following character-defining elements of the General Manager’s House should be respected, for example:
- the simple and functional nature of its design, and its overall good workmanship and appropriate use of materials;
- its present-day use as a visitors’ centre, which is part of an effort to interpret the former mining complex;
- its original form and materials, including a simple log construction with an overhanging gable roof supported on wood brackets;
- the features of the form, construction, and materials of its two-storey addition that unify it with the site’s other buildings: its wood-frame structure, its horizontal wood siding, and its metal-covered gable roof;
- the residential expression of its two porches and the arrangement and detailing of the windows;
- the large open interior of the log section of the house, with its exposed log interior walls;
- its comfortable relationship with the other structures and landscape features of the site due to its simple form, materials, detailing, and colour scheme, in particular the residential grouping at the north side of the open yard.