Description of Historic Place
Mme. Tremblay’s Store, also known as Building 16, is located at the corner of a major intersection in Dawson City. This two-storey commercial building is of wood-frame construction and has a flat roof. The building has a boxed cornice supported on scrollwork brackets, an oriel window, and a corner window and entrance door. Projecting wooden lettering below the cornice spells out ‘Mme. Tremblay’s Store’. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.
Mme. Tremblay’s Store is a Recognized Federal Heritage Building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental value.
Mme. Tremblay’s Store is associated with the development of Dawson City as a supply, service and distribution centre during and following the Gold Rush. The building is directly associated with Emilie Tremblay, a person of regional significance, and a native of the Lac St. Jean region of Québec. She is recalled for her early appearance in the Territory, as well as for her long residence, efforts as an independent miner on the creeks, and her resolute management of the millinery/dry goods business in Dawson City in tough economic times. The building is also associated with the development of Dawson City as a territorial capital.
Mme. Tremblay’s Store is valued for its good aesthetic design. It is also of value for its very good functional design and effectiveness of materials, layout and mode of construction, which is evidenced by the length of service of the building as a combination retail/residential establishment from 1899 to 1976.
Mme. Tremblay’s Store reinforces the Gold Rush character of its commercial streetscape setting in Dawson, and anchors one corner of a historically important intersection. The building is well known to residents and visitors of the city.
Sources: Joan Mattie, Twenty-two Dawson structures, Dawson, Yukon, Heritage Character Statement, 88-012; Mme. Tremblay’s Store, Dawson, Yukon, Heritage Character Statement, 88-012.
The character-defining elements of Mme. Tremblay’s store should be respected.
Its good aesthetic design, very good functional design, very good materials and craftsmanship, for example:
- the two-storey, wood-frame, rectangular massing with a flat roof;
- the boxed cornice supported on scrollwork brackets;
- the irregularly spaced and elegantly proportioned windows, including the show window, the inset and splayed corner window, and the oriel window;
- the double front door and the pipe-framed awning;
- the painted cove siding;
- the projecting lettering spelling out the name “Mme Tremblay’s Store”;
- the interior plan arranged to provide retail space on the ground floor and residential space on the second floor.
The manner in which Mme. Tremblay’s Store reinforces the Gold Rush character of its commercial streetscape setting and is a well-known building in Dawson, as evidenced by:
- its ongoing historic relationship to the corner of Third Avenue and King Street, given the proximity of the building to the lot lines and boardwalk;
- the awning along the principal elevation, the show windows, the corner window and entrance, and the projecting lettering, all of which contribute to the Gold Rush character of the commercial streetscape;
- its scale and wood-frame construction which reinforces the character of adjacent commercial buildings;
- its prominent location at the corner of an intersection, and on a busy pedestrian axis anchored by the Palace Grand Theatre, and Diamond Tooth Gertie’s Gambling Casino, which makes it a well-known building within the community.