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Former Bowmanville Boys Training School/Camp 30 National Historic Site of Canada

2020 Lambs Road, Bowmanville, Ontario, L1C, Canada

Formally Recognized: 2013/04/19

Cafeteria; Parks Canada / Parcs Canada - Michelle Cinnani
Cafeteria, rear elevation, James Govan, architect.
Infirmary; Parks Canada / Parcs Canada - Jennifer Cousineau
Gymnasium; Parks Canada / Parcs Canada - Jennifer Cousineau
Gymnasium, east elevation

Other Name(s)

Former Bowmanville Boys Training School/Camp 30 National Historic Site of Canada
Former Bowmanville Boys Training School/Camp 30
l’ancienne école de formation pour garçons de Bowmanville – camp 30
Camp 30
Camp 30
Bowmanville Boys Training School
Bowmanville Boys Training School
Ontario Boys Training School
Ontario Boys Training School
Jury Farm
Jury Farm
Darch Farm
Darch Farm
Jury Lands
Jury Lands

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1924/01/01 to 1940/01/01

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2013/09/11

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The complex of buildings that began as the Bowmanville Boys Training School is a rare and outstanding group of Prairie-Style buildings in Canada. All six buildings are of masonry construction, finished on the exterior in brick and stucco, with asbestos-shingle roofs. The four earliest buildings, the Cafeteria, Jury House, Kiwanis House, and the Gymnasium, bear the hallmarks of the Prairie Style most strongly. They exhibit open plans, fragmented volumes, natural materials, a horizontality that reflects the flatness of the prairie landscape, geometric ornamentation, and flat roofs. These buildings are strikingly modern in sensibility. Though technically institutional buildings, Jury House, Kiwanis House, and the Cafeteria are relatively intimate in scale and therefore bear greater resemblance than the other buildings to the domestic architecture through which Frank Lloyd Wright first articulated the Prairie Style at the turn of the 20th century. The Triple Dormitory and the Infirmary/General’s House present designs that are more traditional in their aesthetic approach. They adopt elements of the Prairie Style and the Arts and Crafts tradition, such as open interior spaces and fragmented volumes, natural materials and geometric ornament, but retain the pitched roofs and sash windows that were abandoned in institutional architecture once the International Style took hold in Canada (over the following decades).

Heritage Value

Bowmanville Boys Training School/Camp 30 is of historical significance because:

• when it opened in the mid-1920s, the Bowmanville Boys School was widely considered the most progressive institution of its kind in Canada. A rare example of Prairie School architecture in Canada, Bowmanville’s modern architecture, campus style plan, professional staff, open, semi-domestic environment, and broad educational programme for boys aged 8-14, placed it at the head of the youth reform movement;

• during the Second World War, the school was adapted to serve as an internment camp, known as Camp 30, for German prisoners of war captured by the Allies. Its principal buildings, used from 1941 to 1945 for internment, remain at the site although guard towers, fencing and temporary barracks were dismantled after the war when the camp was turned back into a school. Camp 30 was the site of a small but infamous riot popularly known as the Battle of Bowmanville.

Character-Defining Elements

Elements contributing to the heritage value of this site include:
- the intactness of the landscape including surface imprints and subsurface components associated with Bowmanville
Boys Training School and with Camp 30;
- the complex of six buildings laid out in a campus-style plan beside an oval-shaped ring road, the sixth and largest
building being just outside the perimeter road;
- the manner in which the buildings are visually and functionally interconnected by a network of paved pathways;
- the Prairie-Style of the buildings, with masonry construction, brick and stucco exteriors and asbestos-shingle roofs;
- the modern sensibility of the buildings expressed through open plans, the fragmented volumes, the natural
materials, their horizontality, their geometric ornamentation and their flat roofs;
- the integrity of any surviving archaeological remains and features that relate to the site’s use as a prisoner of war
camp during the period from 1941 to 1945;
- the viewplanes betwenn the buildings.




Recognition Authority

Government of Canada

Recognition Statute

Historic Sites and Monuments Act

Recognition Type

National Historic Site of Canada

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Architecture and Design
Governing Canada
Military and Defence

Function - Category and Type



Military Support
Special or Training School

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

National Historic Sites Directorate, Documentation Centre, 5th Floor, Room 89, 25 Eddy Street, Gatineau, Quebec

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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