St. Mary's la Prairie Anglican Church
Église anglicane St. Mary's
St. Mary's Anglican Church
Links and documents
1897/01/01 to 1897/12/31
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
St. Mary's la Prairie Anglican Church, a stone structure built in 1897, stands as a focal point in a historic residential neighbourhood near Portage la Prairie's business district. The site's provincial designation applies to the church, the church hall and the side lot it occupies.
St. Mary's la Prairie Anglican Church, designed by accomplished Winnipeg architect H.S. Griffith, is one of Manitoba's finest examples of late nineteenth-century Gothic Revival architecture. The church, the third built for the parish, also has important associations with Reverend William Cockran who founded the Parish of Portage la Prairie in 1851 and whose work through the Church Missionary Society helped establish the Anglican Church in the West. St. Mary's is an especially ambitious structure with finely crafted rough stone walls, the characteristic Gothic vocabulary of pointed arches and an impressive interior. It also is one of the best examples of its era's taste for picturesque invention, as revealed by its light-hearted flared roof, open bell assemblage and curved buttresses on the porch.
Source: Manitoba Heritage Council Minute, January 13, 1996
Key elements that define the heritage character of the St. Mary's la Prairie Anglican Church site include:
- the structure's placement on a wide grassed lot on 2nd Street SW, in a traditional east-west alignment, with its front and entrance porch facing west
Key exterior elements that define the building's Gothic Revival style and picturesque qualities include:
- the one-storey rectangular form, tall vertical proportions and steeply pitched gable roof with flared eaves
- the northwest corner porch and eastern apse with polygonal roofs that match the slope of the main roof
- the open bell-cote housed in a unique assemblage of stone and wooden forms extending upward from the front north wall
- the finely crafted stonework, including random-coursed limestone walls and the stone foundation, buttresses, bell-cote supports, arched window heads and sills
- Gothic Revival features such as pointed arches around the windows, louvred opening and the porch's double entrance doors, the Y-tracery in the main west window and the trefoil detailing
- other features and finishes such as the decorative wooden roof brackets, a Celtic cross on the roof's ridge, etc.
Key elements that define the building's impressive interior character include:
- the largely unaltered spaces of the front vestibule, the nave with a high, dark-stained collar-braced ceiling and wide centre aisle, and the raised apsidal chancel with side alcoves
- the Gothic Revival details carried through from the exterior, including the pointed arched window surrounds, chancel arch and openings to the alcoves, the stained-glass memorial windows with deep reveals, the trefoil detailing in the ceiling, altar and wooden pews, etc.
- other fine finishes and furnishings such as the hardwood flooring and plastered walls, the chancel's dark-stained wood ceiling, the dark-stained wood altar, an elaborate pipe organ, etc.
Province of Manitoba
Manitoba Historic Resources Act
Provincial Heritage Site
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
Location of Supporting Documentation
Main Floor, 213 Notre Dame Avenue Winnipeg MB R3B 1N3
Cross-Reference to Collection