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Yorkton Court House

29 Darlington Street East, Yorkton, Saskatchewan, S3N, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1988/02/15

Front façade of Yorkton Court House, 2004.; Government of Saskatchewan, Calvin Fehr, 2004
Yorkton Court House
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Other Name(s)

Yorkton Court House
Yorkton Court House

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1919/01/01 to 1921/12/31

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2005/04/18

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Yorkton Court House is a Provincial Heritage Property which occupies two well-landscaped city lots in Yorkton. The property features a two-storey symmetrical stone and brick building which was constructed between 1919-1921.

Heritage Value

The heritage value of the Yorkton Court House lies in its architecture. The building is one of a series of court houses designed by the office of the provincial architect, a government department responsible for the design and/or supervision of all public buildings between 1905 and the depression years of the 1930's. Architect and engineer Maurice Sharon held the position between 1916 and 1930 and is credited with the design of ten Provincial courthouses. Several towns and cities were identified as judicial centres with those at Yorkton, Kerrobert, Prince Albert, Weyburn and Estevan receiving buildings of substantial size, while those at Gravelbourg, Shaunavon, Melfort, Wynyard and Assiniboia received more modest buildings that share an identical prototypical design. Constructed between 1919 and 1921, the Yorkton Court House was the first to be designed by Sharon, continuing the stylistic trend set by the work of Sharon's predecessor, Raymond Philbrick. It displays a stronger affinity with Philbrick's court houses at Swift Current and Humboldt than with Sharon's own later work. The front façade is a symmetrical composition framed by stone end pavilions framing a centralized entrance that is accentuated by detailed stone carving. The rusticated base of the end pavilions combined with arched windows, a stone cornice and upper balustrades exhibit hallmarks of the Beaux-Arts style as developed from French Classicism.

The heritage value of the Yorkton Court House also rests in it being a symbol of Yorkton's status as a pre-eminent community in the eastern portion of the province. The building's striking exterior is clad in a combination of ample amounts of Tyndall Stone with Claybank brick and the interior staircases, woodwork and stained glass convey a sense of the importance of the institution. The generous use of stone represents the end of an era of public building construction in Saskatchewan as diminished population growth in the 1920's saw brick replace stone as a less expensive material. Situated on large well-landscaped grounds and in close proximity to the land titles building, the Yorkton Courthouse constitutes a major landmark in the community.


Source:

Province of Saskatchewan, Notice of Intention to Designate as Provincial Heritage Property under The Heritage Property Act, September 24, 1987.

Province of Saskatchewan: Order Designating as Provincial Heritage Property, February 15, 1988.

Character-Defining Elements

The heritage value of the Yorkton Court House resides in the following character-defining elements:
-those elements reflecting the building's Beaux-Arts style including the elaborate front entrance with carved stone crest and archway, stone cornice, projecting end pavilions with rusticated base and brick parapet with stone balustrades;
-those interior elements reflecting the building's importance including the main and back staircases, stained glass windows, woodwork, and light fixtures;
-those elements that contribute the landmark status of the Court House, including the monumental form and scale of the building, the symmetrical massing and the use of substantial stone and brick materials on the exterior.

Recognition

Jurisdiction

Saskatchewan

Recognition Authority

Government of Saskatchewan

Recognition Statute

Heritage Property Act, s. 39(1)

Recognition Type

Provincial Heritage Property

Recognition Date

1988/02/15

Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

n/a

Theme - Category and Type

Governing Canada
Security and Law

Function - Category and Type

Current

Government
Courthouse and/or Registry Office

Historic

Architect / Designer

Maurice Sharon

Builder

Minkley and Jones

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Department of Culture, Youth and Recreation Heritage Resources Branch 1919 Saskatchewan Drive Regina, SK File: PHP 596

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier

PHP 596

Status

Published

Related Places

n/a

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