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Samuel Abbott House and Fishing Premises Municipal Heritage Site

Samuel Abbott House, Bonavista, NL
Samuel Abbott Fishing Premises, Bonavista, NL
Samuel Abbott Fishing Premises, Bonavista, NL

Statement of Significance

Formal Recognition Type

Municipal Heritage Building, Structure or Land

Description of Historic Place

Samuel Abbott House and Fishing Premises Site includes a house, net store, and fish flake, and is located at 004 Newman’s Point Place in Bonavista, NL. The house is a wooden, two-and-a-half storey building with a steep gable roof. The net store is a vernacular, wooden, gable roofed structure on wood posts. The abutting fish flake is a rough platform on poles and is mainly constructed of raw, rinded wood. The municipal heritage designation is confined to the footprint of each building or structure.

Heritage Value

Samuel Abbott House and Fishing Premises has been designated a municipal heritage site by the Town of Bonavista due to its aesthetic and cultural values.

Samuel Abbott House house has aesthetic value as it is a representative example of the type of house built by fishermen in the region in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Such homes employed simple construction techniques, utilized symmetrical design elements and presented a plain, neat facade.

The net store and fish flake add to the aesthetic value of the property as they are good examples of intact fishing structures in the region. There are few such structures in the area, or the province in general, left in their original shape and good condition. Fish flakes in particular disappeared from the built landscape of rural Newfoundland with the decline of the salt fishery in the mid 1900s. Buildings and structures used in the inshore fishery were designed for practical use and had to endure the rigors of harsh environmental conditions. Hence, typical fisheries buildings and structures typically exhibit the use of rough materials, simple design elements and utilitarian construction techniques.

Samuel Abbott House and Fishing Premises site has cultural value as it evokes a certain sense of time and place. It stands as a visual reminder of a way of life tied to the sea and its resources. Its location on the waterfront speaks to the importance of the ocean’s resources in the lives of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians. Several generations of Abbotts fished from the Newman’s Point property, living within close proximity to the source of their livelihood, a coastal settlement pattern repeated across the province.

Source: Town of Bonavista Town Council Meeting Minutes of 2006/08/14

Character Defining Elements

Those exterior elements relating to the aesthetic value, simple form and unelaborate appearance of the house, including:

-steep gable roof;
-number of storeys;
-wooden roof shingles;
-narrow clapboard;
-corner boards;
-window size, style, trim and placement;
-size, style, trim and placement of exterior doors;
-chimney style and placement;
-and the dimension, location and orientation of the building.

Those exterior elements relating to the practical, vernacular nature and function of the fishing premises including:

-original form, scale and massing of store and flake;
-use of traditional building materials;
-steep gable roof;
-number of storeys;
-narrow wood clapboard sheathing;
-corner boards;
-red ochre exterior colour;
-window size, style, trim and placement;
-roller under upper level window;
-size, style, trim and placement of exterior doors;
-size, style, trim and placement of upper level door leading to flake;
-original form, scale and massing of ramp providing access to flake;
-wooden post structural supports;
-and the dimension, location and orientation of the store.

Location and History

Community Bonavista
Municipality Town of Bonavista
Civic Address 004 Newman's Point, Mockbeggar
Construction (circa) 1823 - 1823
Builder
Samuel Abbott
Style 19th Century Vernacular
Building Plan Rectangular Long Façade
Website Link http://www.townofbonavista.com/