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Centerville Church

889 Highway 330, Centreville, Nova Scotia, B0W, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1984/07/04

Side elevation and cemetery, Centreville Church, Centreville, NS, 2008.; Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, Province of Nova Scotia 2008
Side Elevation and Cemetery
Rear elevation, Centreville Church, Centreville, NS, 2008.; Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, Province of Nova Scotia 2008
Rear Elevation
Front elevation, Centreville Church, Centreville, NS, 2008.; Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, Province of Nova Scotia 2008
Front Elevation

Other Name(s)

Centerville Church
Faith Christian Church

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1862/01/01 to 1862/12/31

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2008/02/28

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

Located on Highway 330 in Centreville on Cape Sable Island, NS, the Centreville Church, is a local landmark. It is a large, white building with a tall steeple facing the ocean and is bounded on one side and to the back by a cemetery. The church and the small parcel it sits on are included in the municipal heritage designation given July 4, 1984.

Heritage Value

The Centreville Church is valued for its association with the history of the Baptist Church; Rev. Asa McGray; for its role in the community of Centreville; and for its many original features.

Rev. Asa McGray was a Free Will Baptist minister from Maine who came to Cape Sable Island in 1820. Here he established a congregation on Cape Sable Island with the assistance of Rev. Thomas Crowell. Services were held in McGray’s home for many years, which he remodelled at his own cost to accommodate his congregation. McGray served his congregation and community tirelessly and assisted in the building of bridges and schools, and often acted as a doctor and his wife a midwife. McGray died in 1843 and the congregation eventually came under the direction of Rev. E.G. Eaton. Eaton was instrumental in the construction of the church at Centreville in 1862. At this time the church became part of the United Baptist Convention. Rev. McGray’s son Turner McGray donated the land on which the church was constructed.

The church faces the Atlantic Ocean and is situated in close proximity to the shore. When the steeple was added in 1903, the building quickly became a guide for local fishermen. The cemetery surrounding the church, much of which predates the church, contains the stones of many of Cape Sable Island’s earliest residents, including grantee Archelaus Smith, his wife Elizabeth and Reverend Asa McGray.

The church, which comprises elements of the Greek Revival and Gothic Revival styles makes it a local landmark. It is no longer a Baptist Church; however it continues to serve as a church and is known as the Faith Christian Church.

Source: Municipality of the District of Barrington, Municipal Heritage files, Centreville Baptist Church

Character-Defining Elements

Character-defining elements of the Centerville Baptist Church relate to its Greek and Gothic Revival styles and include:

- wood frame structure;
- wood shingle cladding;
- gable roof;
- large arched double four-over-over windows with stained glass lozenge panes at top;
- wooden steeple adorned with a crown and hooded Gothic windows;
- small, square stained glass window in rear of church;
- cornice return under eaves;
- entablature across main elevation;
- all original interior elements;
- proximity to ocean;
- bounded by cemetery on two sides.



Nova Scotia

Recognition Authority

Local Governments (NS)

Recognition Statute

Heritage Property Act

Recognition Type

Municipally Registered Property

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Building Social and Community Life
Religious Institutions

Function - Category and Type


Religion, Ritual and Funeral
Religious Facility or Place of Worship


Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Cape Sable Historical Society, P.O. Box 67, Barrington Nova Scotia, B0W 1S0 Municipality of Barrington , P.O. Box 100 Barrington NS B0W 1S0

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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