Links and documents
1860/01/01 to 1861/01/01
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
St. John the Evangelist Anglican Church is a wooden, vernacular Gothic Revival church located on a quiet road in Topsail, Conception Bay South, NL. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.
St. John the Evangelist Anglican Church has been designated a municipal heritage site by the Town of Conception Bay South due to its aesthetic and historic values.
St. John the Evangelist Anglican Church has aesthetic value as a vernacular interpretation of a nineteenth century Gothic Revival church. Its wooden construction is typical of Anglican churches built in outport Newfoundland during the nineteenth century. The pristine state of the structure provides valuable insight into the materials and techniques used in constructing such churches.
The exterior of the church gives the impression of a cozy, community-oriented building. Clad in narrow wooden clapboard, this church has a bell tower which features a spire and Celtic cross finial. The steeply pitched gable roof and trefoil appliqués on the windows are in keeping with Gothic Revival style elements. A large, stained glass, peaked window graces the eastern wall, where the altar is located. Entrance to the church is gained through the bell tower’s wooden plank doors. Other than the trefoil appliqués in the windows, eaves brackets on the tower are the only decoration on the exterior of the church.
St. John the Evangelist Anglican Church has further aesthetic value due to its picturesque setting within a cemetery bordered by tranquil roads, namely Church Terrace and Spruce Hill Road.
St. John the Evangelist Anglican Church has historical value due to its age. The church was constructed in 1860-61, making it one of the oldest buildings in Topsail. It was used for over 100 years by the Anglican community in Topsail and has changed very little in that time. Though regular ecumenical services ended in 1974, the church is open to the public regularly, and can still be used for private services such as weddings and flower services.
The church has further historic value due to its association with several prominent Newfoundlanders, including influential public figures James Bancroft, founder of the Newfoundland Teacher’s Association, and Sir Edgar R. Bowring, politician. The church was also the setting for an episode of the popular CBC television program Pigeon Inlet.
Source: Town of Conception Bay South Regular Council Meeting Motion #99-419 June 15, 1999.
All those elements that are reflective of the Gothic Revival style of architecture including:
- bell tower;
- trefoil Gothic appliqués;
- steeply pitched gable roof;
- Celtic cross finial.
All those original features, including:
- number of storeys;
- central tower and tall spire;
- narrow wooden clapboard;
- corner boards;
- size, style, trim and placement wooden plank door;
- window size, style, trim and placement;
- dimension, location and orientation of building.
Newfoundland and Labrador
Municipal Heritage Building, Structure or Land
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
S. Churchill, A. Churchill and W. Allen
Location of Supporting Documentation
Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador
1 Springdale Street
St. John's, NL A1C 5V5
Cross-Reference to Collection