Cape Sable Lighttower
Phare de Cape Sable
Cape Sable Lighthouse
Phare de Cape Sable
Links and documents
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
Sitting on the open landscape of Cape Sable Island, the Cape Sable Lighttower is an impressive thirty meter tall octagonal structure of reinforced concreted comprised of a pedimented base with an entry door, a tapered shaft with four small windows above the door, and a capital-like portion that is provided by the flared top of the shaft which provides a floor for the cast iron lantern above. It is among the tallest towers ever built with this design. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.
The Lighttower is a Classified Federal Heritage Building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental values
The Lighttower is a very good illustration of improvement to mapping of Canadian waters and an important aid to navigation around the tip of Nova Scotia and marks the entrance into the Bay of Fundy. Building the Cape Sable Island Lighttower was an early response to the needs of steamships passing closer to shore.
The Lighttower is an excellent example of a classically-designed octagonal lighttower with its aesthetic and functional design representing successful adaptation of new technology to the particular functional requirements of lighttower construction. The height of the structure was used to advantage to create a structure of elegant proportions and balance. The overall design, focus on symmetrical arrangement, new construction techniques and adaptation of materials characterize the structure.
The Lighttower reinforces the maritime character of the region of small villages and summer recreational properties on a mile-long crescent-shaped reef just offshore from Cape Sable Island. The strength of the tower design combined with the cluster of accessory structures provides a strong architectural presence on the open landscape of Cape Sable Island. The critical location of the Lighttower on one of the busiest inshore fishing grounds in the world and adjacent to some major shipping lanes makes it an important landmark. It marks the entrance to the Bay of Fundy of ships coming from the east, and is seen by many New England vessels charting courses to Europe.
Joan Mattie, Lighttower, Cape Sable Island, Shelburne County, Nova Scotia, Federal Heritage Buildings Review Office Building Report 87-115.
Lighttower, Cape Sable Island, Shelburne County, Nova Scotia Heritage Character Statement 87-115.
The following character defining elements of the Lighttower should be respected, for example:
Its excellent classical and very good functional design, and adaptation of classicism to vernacular buildings as manifested in:
-Its octagonal massing, classical arrangement and symmetry, composed of a base with a pedimented entry door delineated by a projecting string course, a twenty-five meter shaft with four small windows at regular intervals above the door, and a capital, the flared top of the shaft which provides the floor for the lantern.
-Its sophisticated reinforced concrete construction of thin shell design.
The manner in which the Lighttower at Cape Sable Island reinforces the maritime character of the region and marks the entrance to the Bay of Fundy for water vessels.
Government of Canada
Treasury Board Heritage Buildings Policy
Classified Federal Heritage Building
Theme - Category and Type
Function - Category and Type
- Navigational Aid or Lighthouse
Architect / Designer
Location of Supporting Documentation
National Historic Sites Directorate, Documentation Centre, 5th Floor, Room 89, 25 Eddy Street, Gatineau, Quebec
Cross-Reference to Collection