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James Groves House Municipal Heritage Site

James Groves House, Bonavista, NL
James Groves House, Bonavista, NL
James Groves House, Bonavista, NL

Statement of Significance

Formal Recognition Type

Municipal Heritage Building, Structure or Land

Description of Historic Place

James Grove House is a wooden, two storey Second Empire style house with bay windows and a concave Mansard roof. It is located at 099 Church Street in Bonavista, NL. The municipal heritage designation is confined to the footprint of the building.

Heritage Value

James Grove House has been designated a municipal heritage site due to its aesthetic, historic and cultural values.

The James Grove House has aesthetic value as a good example of an early Second Empire merchant house. The large house was built around 1895-1900 and features a three bay facade with bow windows extending in two storey bays. Two original profile chimneys protrude above the concave, cedar-shingled mansard roof; and shed-roofed dormers sit centrally on both front and rear facades. The front door retains its original coloured glass and embossed sidelights and transom. The house features the characteristic attention to detail of its designer and builder, Ronald Strathie, a third generation carpenter, as well as a gable-end roundel motif typical of historic architecture in Bonavista.

James Grove House has further aesthetic value as a reminder of the Strathie family’s proficient architectural output in Bonavista. The Strathies were Bonavista’s premier builders for the period 1811 to 1940.

James Grove House has historic value due to its association with the Grove family and the era of the merchant class in Newfoundland.

Culturally, James Grove House is a remnant of a class system where the wealthier local merchant was of a higher status than most local residents. The original owner, James Grove, was a local fishing merchant who had the house constructed as a duplex to separately house his family and servants, a typical design for merchant houses of the time.

Source: Town of Bonavista Town Council meeting minutes of 2006/08/14

Character Defining Elements

All those exterior elements that define the Second Empire style of architecture, the typical historic architecture of Bonavista and the details characteristic of its designer, including:
-concave Mansard roof;
-cedar shingles;
-3 bay facade;
-2 storey bay windows;
-single hung 2/2 windows;
-2 chimneys with original profiles;
-gable end roundel motif;
-shed-roofed dormer windows;
-wood and embossed/coloured glass front door, sidelights and transom;
-wood trims and narrow wood clapboard sheathing;
-water table trim and sill;
-and cornerboards.

Location and History

Community Bonavista
Municipality Town of Bonavista
Civic Address 099 Church Street
Construction (circa) 1895 - 1900
Ronald Strathie
Ronald Strathie
Style Second Empire
Building Plan Rectangular Long Façade
Website Link