Description of Historic Place
The Monseigneur Tache Historic Site is located in the heart of a quiet and largely francophone community in south-eastern Manitoba. The site is composed of the former property of the Roman Catholic parish of Ste-Genevieve (incorporated in 1916), the 1918 church and rectory, and the cemetery that was opened during that same year.
The Monseigneur Tache Historic Site is a good example of the kind of ecclesiastical compound that defined many French-Canadian villages in southeastern Manitoba, the heartland of French culture in rural Manitoba. Each element of the site ' church, rectory and cemetery ' is a fine representative of those traditional aspects of the culture. The church, whose towering spire is visible from a distance, is a modest example of ecclesiastical design traditions developed in Quebec in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and later recreated in French-Canadian villages of the Prairies. The rectory, a simple and modest building, is a fitting complement to the grander church building, and the cemetery, with its many elegant gravemarkers, is an important connection to the area's pioneers. The site continues to serve as a testament to the closely-knit nature of the community, especially when it resolved to restore the church after a fire in 1994. The church also continues its important local role as an integral part of the hamlet's streetscape and as the village's distinguishing feature.
Source: Rural Municipality of Tache By-law No. 1737, September 12, 1989
Key elements that define the heritage site character of the Monseigneur Tache Historic Site include:
- the historic and physical relationship between the church, rectory and cemetery, the extensive grassed grounds that surround the church, and the trees and forest on the rest of the site (known as the Henri Legal Woods)
- the cemetery with its many fine stones
- the proximity of the site to the convent and school further south
Key elements that define the French-Canadian inspiration for the church, externally and internally, include:
- the high one-storey rectangular form with a steeply pitched roof, neatly ordered facades and side elevations, and a small annex (side-aisle) in the rear
- the projecting tower housing the entrance and open belfry topped by a tall spire and Latin cross
- the classical openings in the facade, particularly the tall double-door main entrance, topped by the round-headed window and the small rose window in the tower
- the symmetrically placed, tall, round-headed windows with decorative wood keystones and stained glass edging in the main facade and side elevations
- inside, the very high ceiling, finished in tongue and groove fir and supported by large columns also made of wood
- the painted or varnished tongue and groove fir finish in the vestibule, nave, sanctuary, etc.
- the various ecclesiastical features and details, including pews, confessional, credence-table of the chief altar, communion table, harmonium, Abbe Picton's desk, three statutes (for Ste. Genevieve, St. Joseph, and Ste. Anne)
Key elements that define the heritage character of the rectory, externally and internally, include:
- the one-storey form, steeply pitched roof, vertical windows and the gallery
- the symmetrical facade and rear annex
- inside, the construction, completely of wood, and original finishes in most of the rooms