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Charlotte County Court House

123 Frederick Street, St. Andrews, New Brunswick, E5B, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1997/05/06

Front façade; Province of New Brunswick
Charlotte County Court House
Portico; Province of New Brunswick
Charlotte County Court House
Rear and side view; Province of New Brunswick
Charlotte County Court House

Other Name(s)

n/a

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1839/01/01 to 1840/01/01

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2007/07/17

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

Charlotte County Court House consists of a one-storey Neoclassical wood clapboard building. It is formally situated on a plot of land that is one of the original public town squares in the town of St. Andrews.

Heritage Value

Charlotte County Court House is designated a Provincial Historic Site for its architecture and for its continued use as a courthouse.

Charlotte County Court House is recognized for its architecture. It is an elegant structure that illustrates its functional importance through its massiveness, symmetry, balance, architectural detail and quality of construction. Built by Thomas Berry in 1839-40, this building is an example of county courthouses built in New Brunswick in the mid-19th century, reflecting a vernacular building tradition with Classical principles. It is an extremely well-preserved public building constructed of local pine set on a stone foundation, and is one of the most significant Neoclassical style buildings in Canada, illustrated by its strong four-column Tuscan portico and pediment on the long side of the 75 foot by 55 foot gabled block. The Court House’s spatial relationship to the adjacent to the Charlotte County Gaol, is exemplified by its proximity and the discreet side door leading from the courtroom to the Gaol yard. The setting of the building, at the top of the sloped public square, with its formal frontal orientation towards the center of the town, creates an imposing public image symbolic of its purpose and ideals.

Charlotte County Court House is also recognized as an historic courthouse and for its continued use as a courthouse for Charlotte County. In the early years of its history, the Court House was also the focal point for community activities such as elections, fairs, parades and official visits.

Source: Department of Wellness, Culture and Sport, Heritage Branch, File Vol. I-6, 12765-2.

Character-Defining Elements

The character-defining elements that describe Charlotte County Court House include:
- symmetrical and ordered structure of five bays with a grand central double door;
- typical pitched gable roof;
- front portico comprised of an impressive triangular pediment supported by four large Tuscan wood columns;
- pine Tuscan pilasters at each building corner and under the front portico;
- random coursed, roughly squared rubble stone foundation walls made of red sandstone, featuring the date “1840” carved below the wooden skirt board on the Western façade;
- considerable fenestration throughout;
- detailed British Royal coat of arms carved in wood by Charles Kennedy in 1858, set within the front pediment’s tympanum.

The character-defining elements that describe the interior of the Charlotte County Court House include:
- distinctive spatial qualities of the lofty courtroom, nearly unchanged from its original arrangement, flanked on both the East and West sides by ancillary rooms;
- original painted wood courtroom furniture and original built in furniture still in use;
- painted wood railings throughout the courtroom supported by of a string of thick turned balusters;
- original window and door trim throughout the building, carved in a squared Greek Revival pattern;
- pair of brass pillar lights on the judge’s dias;
- set of brass weights and measures from 1854, used for years as official standards for commercial quantity.

Recognition

Jurisdiction

New Brunswick

Recognition Authority

Province of New Brunswick

Recognition Statute

Historic Sites Protection Act, s. 2(2)

Recognition Type

Historic Sites Protection Act – Protected

Recognition Date

1997/05/06

Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

n/a

Theme - Category and Type

Governing Canada
Security and Law
Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Architecture and Design

Function - Category and Type

Current

Historic

Government
Courthouse and/or Registry Office

Architect / Designer

n/a

Builder

Thomas Berry

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Heritage Branch - Site File

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier

6

Status

Published

Related Places

n/a

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