Description of Historic Place
Building 71, also known as the School, is situated at the eastern end of the central sector of the village in the Grosse Île and the Irish Memorial National Historic Site of Canada. The small, one-and-a-half-storey wooden building has a gable roof pierced by dormer windows and an almost square plan. The windows are asymmetrically placed and the principal entrance is placed to the right of three windows on the principal façade. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.
Building 71 is a Recognized Federal Heritage Building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental values.
Building 71 is associated with Canadian immigration and quarantine. In the early 20th century, Canada’s economic boom sparked an unprecedented wave of immigration. The historical value of Building 71 resides in its affiliation with the group of buildings erected in the early decades of the 20th century to accommodate the growing number of patients held on the island. The School continued to be used as such even after the quarantine facility was closed, since classes were still being taught there even in the 1950s.
Building 71 is valued for its good aesthetic design influenced by turn of the 20th century vernacular architecture. The casement window dormers and wooden shingle cladding give the appearance of a rural home rather than that of an educational institution. The building has neither the fenestration nor the bell turret typically found in schools of this kind, although the classroom was positioned according to the rule that light should enter from the left side. Very good functional design is also evidenced in the interior configuration and large dimensions which enabled it to accommodate approximately fifty students. Good craftsmanship and materials are evidenced construction and finish.
Building 71 reinforces the present historic character of its Grosse Île setting, and is a local landmark.
Sources: Histoire et Archéologie, Bureau regional de Quebec, L’école (no.71), Grosse Île (Partie IV 1901-1920), Quebec, Federal Heritage Buildings Review Office, Report 90-031; The School (No.71), Grosse Île, Quebec, Heritage Character Statement 90-031.
The character-defining elements of Building 71 should be respected.
Its good aesthetics, very good functional design and good craftsmanship, for example:
- the one-and-a-half-storey massing, the almost square plan and the gable roof;
- the timber construction, the asymmetrical placement of the doors and windows, and the main entrance placed to the right of three windows on the principal façade;
- the exterior cladding of wooden shingles;
- the elements illustrating the finishing styles and techniques specific to vernacular architecture at the turn of the century;
- the dormer windows;
- the extension, vestibule and portico at the rear;
- the plaster finishing of the ground floor rooms, the sash windows and the panel doors;
- the small wooden boards covering the walls and ceilings of the second storey and the extension.
The manner in which Building 71 reinforces the historic character of Grosse Île, and is a local landmark on the St. Lawrence River, as evidenced by:
- its scale, design and materials, which complement the related adjacent structures, including the Physician’s Residence (Building 67);
- its visibility and familiarity within the local area due to its location at the eastern end of the central sector of the village.