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Loyal Orange Lodge LOL #4 Registered Heritage Structure

Loyal Orange Lodge LOL #4, Bonavista, NL
Loyal Orange Lodge LOL #4, Bonavista, NL
Loyal Orange Lodge LOL #4, Bonavista, NL

Statement of Significance

Formal Recognition Type

Registered Heritage Structure

Description of Historic Place

Loyal Orange Lodge LOL #4 is a 2 storey gable and hipped roofed structure with a 4 storey domed roof tower built by Ronald Strathie in 1907. Located in Bonavista, NL the Lodge is a landmark in the town and has served as a highly successful Lodge for almost a century. This designation is confined to footprint of the building.

Heritage Value

Loyal Orange Lodge LOL #4 was designated a Registered Heritage Structure by the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador in 1997 due to its historic, aesthetic and cultural values.

Loyal Orange Lodge LOL #4 has historic value for its association with the Loyal Orange Association, a fraternal organization that flourished in Newfoundland during the early 20th century. Loyal Orange Lodge LOL #4 is the largest Lodge in Newfoundland and has been called, “the most remarkable in the Orange world.” It is likely that during the early 20th century, at 475 members, it had the largest membership of any Orange Lodge in North America.

Loyal Orange Lodge LOL #4 is also important for its historic association with the Fishermen’s Protective Union. The Lodge was the site of the 1912 annual meeting of the Union where the “Bonavista Platform” was presented by William Coaker. The document served as the Union’s political, economic, and social manifesto demanding changes in the structure of the fishery, government and outport society.

The physical size of Loyal Orange Lodge LOL #4, as well as its large membership, is symbolic of Bonavista’s preeminence as Newfoundland’s largest and most prosperous inshore fishing town during the early 20th century.

Loyal Orange Lodge LOL #4 has aesthetic value due to its associations with Ronald(Rance) Strathie. Strathie was the most prominent member of the Strathie family architectural dynasty and built a number of other structures in the Bonavista area.

Loyal Orange Lodge LOL #4 is one of the finest examples of fraternal hall architecture in Newfoundland and may be the largest gathering hall constructed of wood in Canada. The Lodge is a 2 storey building with a 4 storey domed-roof tower with a steep gabled roof that intersects with a hipped roof at the rear of the building. The interior of the Lodge has aesthetic value for its woodwork - an excellent example of Strathie’s style of craftsmanship.

The scale of Loyal Orange Lodge LOL #4 makes it a landmark on Bonavista's built landscape. It is said that the fishermen of the community would use it to guide their boats back into the harbour from the fishing grounds.

Loyal Orange Lodge LOL #4 has cultural value as it has been a centre of social activity in Bonavista since its construction. Concerts and plays were held in the public meeting rooms until more recently when the second floor Lodge room was opened for public functions.

Source: Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador property file “Bonavista - Loyal Orange Lodge LOL #4 – FPT 175”

Character Defining Elements

All those exterior elements that define the architectural style of the lodge, including:

-location and context of building within Bonavista;
-gable and hip roof lines;
-all interior woodwork (newell posts, banisters etc.) that is reflective of the craftsmanship of Ronald Strathie;
-tower with domed roof;
-arched window in tower;
-window shape, style and position on facade.

Location and History

Community Bonavista
Municipality Town of Bonavista
Civic Address 012-014 Sweetland's Hill
Construction 1907 - 1907
Ronald Strathie
Style Victorian Eclectic
Building Plan Irregular
Website Link