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Vincent Block / Administration Office

Kingston, Ontario, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1990/03/01

Vincent Block / Administration Office Classified Federal Heritage Building; (Department of National Defence, 1989.)
Exterior photo
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Other Name(s)

Vincent Block / Administration Office
Vincent Block / Administration Office
Édifice Vincent / Bureau de l'adminstration

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1847/01/01

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2005/07/27

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

Fort Frontenac is situated at the eastern entrance to Kingston where the Cataraqui River drains into Lake Ontario. Situated within the Canadian Forces complex at Fort Frontenac, the Administration Office / Vincent Block is a simple, elegant rectangular structure with a hip roof. The structure features a regularly coursed limestone façade with regular window openings on the second-storey. The northern end consists of a five-bay section with centre entrance. The southern end is a six-bay section with slightly deeper windows and segmentally arched openings on two central bays. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.

Heritage Value

The Administration Office / Vincent Block is a Classified Federal Heritage Building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental values.

Historical Value:
The Administration Office / Vincent Block is one of the best examples of a structure associated with the theme of the defence of Upper Canada from the threat of invasion by the Americans. The conversion of a guardhouse and canteen at Tete-de-Pont into an additional barracks building, now the Administration Office / Vincent Block Building, was a response to the Oregon crises of the mid-1840s. When the building was transferred to the Canadian government in 1871, the Barracks became home to the ‘A’ Battery Garrison Artillery, the first unit of a permanent Canadian military force. Later reorganized as the Canadian Royal Horse Artillery. During the Second World War, the Barracks became an important recruiting centre and dispatch depot. In 1947 the complex became the site of both the newly created Canadian Land Forces Command and Staff College, and the National Defence College.

Architectural Value:
The simply detailed Administration Office / Vincent Block is a good example of the elegant simplicity characteristic of the work of the Royal Engineers. It exhibits very good quality craftsmanship in the regularly coursed stone façade. The building is very good functionally and constructed of good quality materials.

Environmental Value:
Fort Frontenac is situated at the eastern entrance to Kingston where the Cataraqui River drains into Lake Ontario. There have been changes as the Fort which now consists of two groups of buildings separated from each other by a busy main road. However, the Administration Office / Vincent Block and the layout of the Fort compound has remained essentially as it was in the mid-19th Century. The building and the military base environment exist in a mutually supportive state. The Administration Office / Vincent Block building is a familiar landmark on the base.

Sources:
Jacqueline Adell, Fort Frontenac, 8 buildings, Kingston, Ontario.
Federal Heritage Buildings Review Office Report 89-040.

Character-Defining Elements

The following character-defining elements of the the Administration Office / Vincent Block should be respected, for example:

Its standard design and good quality materials and craftsmanship as evidenced in:

-The building’s simple form and massing which consist of a simple rectangular structure with a hip roof.
-The two large stone chimneys.
-The elegant, regularly coursed limestone façade.
-The regular window openings of the second-storey and the segmentally arched openings on two central bays.
-The iron bars over some of the windows.

The manner in which the building reinforces the military character of the Fort.

Recognition

Jurisdiction

Federal

Recognition Authority

Government of Canada

Recognition Statute

Treasury Board Heritage Buildings Policy

Recognition Type

Classified Federal Heritage Building

Recognition Date

1990/03/01

Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

n/a

Theme - Category and Type

Function - Category and Type

Current

Defence
Military Office

Historic

Architect / Designer

n/a

Builder

n/a

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

National Historic Sites Directorate, Documentation Centre, 5th Floor, Room 89, 25 Eddy Street, Gatineau, Quebec

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier

3694

Status

Published

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General view

Fort Frontenac National Historic Site of Canada

Fort Frontenac National Historic Site of Canada is an archaeological site located beneath the intersection of Ontario Street and Place D’Armes in Kingston, Ontario. The site…

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