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Forest House Registered Heritage Structure

Forest House, St. John's, NL
Forest House, St. John's, NL
Forest House, St. John's, NL

Statement of Significance

Formal Recognition Type

Registered Heritage Structure

Description of Historic Place

Forest House is a two-storey Second Empire style house located at 50 Forest Road, St. John’s, NL. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.

Heritage Value

Forest House was designated a Registered Heritage Structure by the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador in 2003 due to its aesthetic value.

Built circa 1890, Forest House has aesthetic value as it is a great example of a Second Empire style house built in the maritime tradition - made popular in Newfoundland by John T. Southcott. Many features of the house are typical of the Second Empire style, including the mansard roof, dormer windows, eaves decoration and 2/2 windows. Though the house is slightly smaller than the typical Second Empire house, its grandeur is reflected through its ornate exterior wooden detailing and decorative stained-glass. The transom windows in the main entranceway are particularly decorative, depicting Lillie Langtry in the centre pane flanked by side panes featuring baskets of flowers. The wooden detailing surrounding the main entranceway is quite grand yet fitting to the overall arrangement of the house, featuring a large entablature with bracketing and pilasters. The interior of this house is interesting in the fact that is has retained much of its original character and finishes. Virtually unchanged, Forest House stands as a testament to the craftsmanship and ability of 19th century builders working in Newfoundland. Though small in scale, this house, both inside and out, has an elegance and charm rarely achieved in today’s architecture.

Source: Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador property file “St. John's - Forest House - FPT 1762”

Character Defining Elements

All elements that reflect the building's age and Second Empire design including:
-number of storeys;
-mansard roof with wooden shingles on the slopes;
-return on the eaves;
-chimney number, style and placement;
-brackets, dentils and wooden appliqués below the eaves;
-narrow wooden beaded clapboard;
-large wooden corner boards resembling pilasters;
-size, style, trim and placement of wooden windows;
-decorative glass work on some windows;
-shaped raincaps with brackets, wide mouldings and appliqués on first storey windows;
-size, style, trim and placement of peaked dormer with rounded windows;
-size, style, trim and placement of wooden storm windows;
-size, style, trim and placement of exterior wooden doors;
-size, style, trim and placement of garden doors on north facade;
-main door with bracketed entablature, transom windows, sidelights, pilaster trim, appliqués and decorative glass;
-stone foundation, and;
-dimension, location and orientation of building.

Location and History

Community St. John's
Municipality City of St. John's
Civic Address 050 Forest Road
Construction 1890 - 1894
Style Second Empire
Building Plan Rectangular Short Façade