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Convocation Hall

17 Kings-Edgehill Lane, Windsor, Nova Scotia, B0N, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1992/10/21

Side elevation Convocation Hall, Kings-Edgehill School, Windsor, NS, 2005.; Heritage Division, NS Dept. of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, 2005
Side Elevation
Side elevation including buttresses, Convocation Hall, Kings-Edgehill School, Windsor, NS, 2005.; Heritage Division, NS Dept. of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, 2005
Side Buttresses
Front and side elevations of Convocation Hall, Windsor taken ca. 1995.; Heritage Division, NS Dept. of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, 1995.
Front and Side Elevations

Other Name(s)


Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1861/01/01 to 1867/12/31

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2005/12/16

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

Convocation Hall is a large sandstone building located on the campus of King’s Edgehill School, Windsor, Nova Scotia. It was originally constructed as a library and assembly/convocation hall between 1861 and 1867, on the original campus of King’s College School. Convocation Hall sits on the forward slope of the hill where the college is located, overlooking the expanse of country across the Avon River. It is the first and most striking building as one turns in the gate for the drive up to the college proper. Both the building and all land for a distance of ten (10) feet surrounding it are included in the provincial designation.

Heritage Value

Convocation Hall is valued for its association, since its erection in 1867, with the life of King’s College, King’s College School and King’s-Edgehill School; for the quality of its Gothic Revival style; for its association with well known architect David Stirling and stonemason George Lang; and as an important of architectural landmark in Nova Scotia. Convocation Hall continues to be used in its traditional role as a library and is the oldest extant purpose built library in Nova Scotia.

King’s College School was founded in 1788. Largely through bequests and gifts the college came into possession of a library of eighteenth century books, and one of the most important collections of incunabula (books published before 1501) on the North American continent in the nineteenth century. In 1858 the Alumni Association of King’s College proposed the construction of a convocation hall and library. With the backing of Sir William Fenwick Williams, Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia its construction began in 1861.

Well known architect David Stirling and his business partner and stonemason George Lang were hired for the project. Although the building officially opened two years after construction began, the building was not completed until 1867. The first floor served as a convocation and assembly hall, while a mezzanine or gallery on the second level housed the library and museum. Convocation Hall was one of the earliest purpose built library buildings in Canada. Stirling also designed the Hensley Memorial Chapel on the school campus in 1877. Convocation Hall continued to serve as a library until 1923 when Kings College moved to Halifax.

Convocation Hall is valued as a rare example of nineteenth century Gothic Revival stone architecture and one of the few built in small town Nova Scotia.

Source: Provincial Heritage Property Program file no. 160

Character-Defining Elements

Character defining elements of Convocation Hall relate to its Gothic Revival stone architecture and include:

- sandstone cladding;
- stone building materials;
- wall buttresses;
- large windows dominating the elevation;
- parapet wall;
- carved corbels graced by the heads of Greek philosophers;
- round headed design of windows, set within slightly pointed architraves;
- location on forward slope of hill overlooking expanse of country across Avon River.
- historic interior features including: arched Gothic oak ceiling, original decorative stencilled flower patterns and original crest of King’s College in the rear ground floor apse.



Nova Scotia

Recognition Authority

Province of Nova Scotia

Recognition Statute

Heritage Property Act

Recognition Type

Provincially Registered Property

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Architecture and Design

Function - Category and Type


Composite School


Post-Secondary Institution

Architect / Designer

David Stirling


George Lang

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Provincial Registry found at Heritage Property Program, 1747 Summer Street, Halifax, NS B3H 3A6

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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