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Épicerie R. H. Clavette

74 Principale Street, Rivière-Verte, New Brunswick, E7C, Canada

Formally Recognized: 2009/02/18

Angled view taken from Dover Road; Madawaska Planning Commission
Épicerie R. H. Clavette
Historic photo, circa 1920; Madawaska Planning Commission
Épicerie R. H. Clavette
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Other Name(s)


Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2009/06/03

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

Épicerie R. H. Clavette, located on Principale Street in the Village of Rivière-Verte, is a two-storey commercial building of Georgian Revival inspiration with a hipped roof. It was constructed in 1908, and, to date, has been used as a place of business by three families of owners.

Heritage Value

Épicerie R. H. Clavette is designated a Local Historic Place mainly for its continuing role in the community as a business for 100 years.

Irish immigrants James Patrick Albert Smyth and Jack John Leonard Smyth purchased Abraham Devillers’ former store in 1903. Five years later, the Smyth brothers abandoned that store to build on the current site of Épicerie R. H. Clavette. They had Élie Saindon of Sainte-Anne build the store on a plot of land Henry Smyth had purchased. In 1922, the Smyth brothers decided to expand their store; Élie Saindon was once again awarded the building contract. Another expansion was made in 1948, this time by Ronald Martin of Sainte-Anne. The store has not changed in appearance since then. In 1978, it passed into the hands of the Jean Thibodeau, Jacques Martin, and Bernadette Thibodeau under the name of J. J. B. Rino Clavette acquired it in 1987 but sold it the following year to his son Marcel, who still operates it under the name of Épicerie R. H Clavette.

Épicerie R. H. Clavette is also known for how it represents the development of a commercial building over the 20th century. In the basement, the three stages can clearly be distinguished by the different construction methods. The foundation of the first section, built in 1908, was made of stone and rough-hewn timber with the bark still on it. This section is about 1.7 metres high, 9.4 metres wide, and 12 metres deep. The second section, built in 1922, is 2 metres high, 9.4 metres wide, and 5 metres deep. This section is also made of stone covered with thick wooden boards, and rough-hewn timber with bark can be seen. The exterior shingles are still on this section. The third section, built in 1948, represents a more modern construction style. It is about 3 metres high, 9.4 metres wide, and 20 metres deep.

Source: Madawaska Planning Commission – Rivière-Verte Register of Historic Places, File 5.3 "Épicerie R. H. Clavette"

Character-Defining Elements

The character-defining elements of Épicerie R. H. Clavette include:
- the two-storey rectangular massing;
- hipped roof;
- ground-floor storefront;
- three distinct phases of construction and expansion (1908, 1922, and 1948) visible in the basement;
- its continuous use as a store for 100 years.



New Brunswick

Recognition Authority

Local Governments (NB)

Recognition Statute

Local Historic Places Program

Recognition Type

Municipal Register of Local Historic Places

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

1922/01/01 to 1922/01/01
1948/01/01 to 1948/01/01

Theme - Category and Type

Developing Economies
Trade and Commerce
Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Architecture and Design

Function - Category and Type



Commerce / Commercial Services
Shop or Wholesale Establishment

Architect / Designer



Élie Saindon

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Madawaska Planning Commission, Riviève-Verte Register of Historic Places, File 5.3

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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