Description of Historic Place
St. Andrew's on the Red Anglican Church, constructed in 1845-49, is a 1 1/2-storey Gothic Revival stone structure. Its sprawling grounds south of Lockport, overlooking the Red River, hold a cemetery. The provincial designation applies to the church and its lot.
St. Andrew's on the Red is the oldest stone church in Western Canada still in active parish use and one of the region's oldest surviving examples of Gothic Revival ecclesiastical architecture. The building's historical significance stretches back to pre-Confederation Manitoba when it served as a base beginning in 1828 for expansion of the Anglican Church in the Red River Settlement, especially through the work of its designer, Archdeacon William Cockran, who organized several other churches, schools and 'model' farms in the colony. Within its own parish, the church also was an important meeting place that fostered social and cultural bonds in the fledgling pioneer community. The structure's s physical attributes include massive walls, built under the supervision of noted mason Duncan McRae using limestone quarried from the banks of the Red River, and a fine pre-Tractarian interior with a centrally place altar and high pulpit. The church's visible location on the river, with its wooden spire rising above surrounding development, and its visual ties to other historic stone buildings, continue to make St. Andrew's on the Red an area landmark.
Source: Manitoba Heritage Council Minutes, January 13, 1996
Key elements that define the heritage character of the St. Andrew's on the Red Anglican Church site include:
- its highly visible location alongside the Red River, on a raised lot adjacent to the broad T-intersection of River and St. Andrews roads
- the church's placement on well-groomed grounds with a stone fence on three sides, containing mature trees, grassed expanses and a cemetery with the graves of many Manitoba pioneers
- the church's inclusion in a larger collection of pioneer structures in the area, including the adjacent St. Andrew's Rectory and numerous stone houses
Key elements that define the church's Gothic Revival style include:
- the basic rectangular massing and east-west axis featuring a projecting square tower and steeply pitched gable roof atop the nave
- the robust facades of roughly dressed limestone with prominent smooth-cut limestone details, including the window and door mouldings and keystones, quoins, decorative eaves corbels, coping and raised gable ends
- the wooden belfry with pointed arched detailing atop the tower's segmented hip roof and the steep pyramidal spire with simple pinnacles on each corner of its base and apex
- the pointed arched openings throughout, including the windows above the entrance and punctuating the tower, sides and east end of the church, some with original panes of rolled glass and basic wooden tracery
Key elements that define the church's interior layout, finishes and details include:
- the formal plan composed of a vestibule, small chapel, nave with simple wooden pews dating from the 1890s flanking the centre aisle, and a raised chancel
- the west-end gallery featuring intact box pews and handsomely carved woodwork, including two octagonal wooden columns
- the intact wooden plank floors and shallow gambrel-shaped nave ceiling, playfully organized like the framing of a York boat
- the wooden pulpit, altar rail, lectern and altar, whose early construction is evidenced by the use of dowels
- the intact details and finishes, including the stained-glass memorial windows (east and south walls), the wooden plank doors with period hardware, the ornate drop light fixtures, the simple wooden staircase balustrade, the baptismal font ca. 1849, the scissor trusses exposed in the attic, crown moulding, etc.