Native Sons Hall
360 Cliffe Avenue, Courtenay, British Columbia, V9N, Canada
Native Sons Hall
Native Sons of Canada Hall
Links and documents
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
The Native Sons Hall is a large, rectangular wooden-clad log structure located in downtown Courtenay. Initially built as a recreational hall, the Native Sons Hall is a well-used and prominent landmark in the community.
The significance of the Native Sons Hall lies in its scientific, historic, aesthetic and social value, particularly for its form and composition, architecture, architects, and its ongoing use as a community hall.
The Native Sons Hall’s scientific value is expressed in the use of building technologies and methods that created the largest free-span log structure in Canada.
Constructed in 1928 as Courtenay’s original recreation centre and meeting hall, the Native Sons Hall’s historic value lies in its association with Bill Eastman - one of Canada’s foremost bridge builders - who supervised the construction of the Hall, and William Hagarty, a prominent local architect who designed the building.
The Native Sons Hall is valued as an exceptional example of rustic-inspired architecture, which is evidenced by the building's extensive use of indigenously grown and milled fire-killed cedar logs. It is significant that the Native Sons Hall is comprised of donated logs from local timber companies, and its prominent situation above the former Comox Logging and Railway line serves as a fitting symbol to the legacy of the local logging industry, which had a profound impact on the social and economic development of Courtenay.
The Native Sons Hall is socially valued as a symbol of the advancement of the Canadian spirit and the adoption of a Canadian identity by the Native Sons of Canada in the interwar period. It is also significant that the Native Sons Hall reflects the spirit of philanthropy in Courtenay, which is highlighted by the fact that the land, logs and most of the labour were donated towards the endeavor of building a community hall. Actively used for a span of 80 years, the Native Sons Hall reflects the importance of social connection and recreation in the development of Courtenay.
In 1986, the Native Sons Hall was the first municipally-designated heritage building in Courtenay, signifying the community’s early stewardship and concern for heritage conservation.
Source: City of Courtenay Planning Department
Key elements which define the heritage character of the Native Sons Hall include its:
- prominent location in downtown Courtenay
- situation of structure directly above the former Comox Logging and Railway right-of-way
- free-span log structure built almost entirely of locally-milled lumber
- cantilevered roof with angled bracket
- variety of exterior wood cladding, including cedar shingle siding and vertically-configured logs
- large internal space with massive log support beams, and original eastern maple and oak floor
- ongoing use as a community hall
Local Governments (BC)
Local Government Act, s.967
Theme - Category and Type
- Peopling the Land
Function - Category and Type
- Recreation Centre
Architect / Designer
Location of Supporting Documentation
City of Courtenay Planning Department
Cross-Reference to Collection