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Alexander Mortuary Chapel of All Souls Registered Heritage Structure

Alexander Mortuary Chapel of All Souls, Bonavista, NL
Alexander Mortuary Chapel of All Souls, Bonavista, NL
Alexander Mortuary Chapel of All Souls, Bonavista, NL

Statement of Significance

Formal Recognition Type

Registered Heritage Structure

Description of Historic Place

Alexander Mortuary Chapel of All Souls is a one storey, wooden mortuary chapel built in the Gothic Revival style by builder Ronald Strathie. Located in Bonavista, NL the chapel is one of only two remaining mortuary chapels in the province. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.

Heritage Value

Alexander Mortuary Chapel of All Souls was designated a Registered Heritage Structure by the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador in 1989 for its historic and aesthetic values.

Alexander Mortuary Chapel of All Souls has historic value because it is a chapel built specifically for small funeral services. It appears to be one of only two remaining mortuary chapels in the province. The historic association with prominent merchant William Alexander and the Alexander family in Bonavista is also very important. The chapel was named after Alexander, a Scottish merchant who contributed a large portion of the money for the construction of the chapel. The Alexander Mortuary Chapel is also representative of the longstanding architectural collaborations of the Strathie and Alexander families in Bonavista.

Alexander Mortuary Chapel has aesthetic value as a good example of the Gothic Revival style as adapted in a small rural chapel. The use of the Gothic style in this chapel reflects the ideals of the Anglican Church during this period. The use of local pine is also demonstrative of the simplification of Gothic Revival church architecture for a rural setting. The Chapel also has aesthetic value due to its association with local builder Ronald (Rance) Strathie. Ronald Strathie was the most prominent of a family of builders and carpenters in the Bonavista area and was commissioned to work on the Alexander Chapel in 1897.

Source: Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador property file “Bonavista - Alexander Mortuary Chapel of All Souls – FPT 180”

Character Defining Elements

All those features related to the function of the chapel as a funeral site and design features representative of the Gothic Revival style of architecture, including:
-window shape and style;
-spires;
-stained glass;
-interior hammerbeam roof;
-building height, massing, dimensions, and;
-use of local materials.

Location and History

Community Bonavista
Municipality Town of Bonavista
Civic Address Coster Street
Significant 1897 - 1901
Builder
Ronald Strathie
Style Gothic Revival
Building Plan Cruciform