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The Currie Premises Registered Heritage Structure

The Currie Premises, Britannia, NL

Statement of Significance

Formal Recognition Type

Registered Heritage Structure

Description of Historic Place

The Currie Premises is a two-and-a-half storey house with a mid-pitched gable slate roof. It is located in Britannia, Random Island, NL. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.

Heritage Value

The Currie Premises was designated a Registered Heritage Structure by the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador in 1997 due to its historic and aesthetic value.

The Currie Premises has historic value because of its association with a prominent family in Brigus - the Currie Family. The Currie family are of importance to Brigus and the surrounding area because they helped pioneer the slate industry in Newfoundland. Besides the slate industry, the Currie family also owned sawmills, retail stores, and schooners in Labrador, which all benefited the local economy. The fact that John Currie employed Welshmen to run his enterprises is of additional importance to the value of this structure because it is the only designated building in Newfoundland that deals with Welsh history.

The Currie Premises has aesthetic value because it retains its original slate roof. Though it was common in the early twentieth century to use slate roofing tiles, people now chose to use more economically viable materials such as asphalt, meaning that any remaining slate roofs that still exist are either being lost or replaced. This house serves as a great example of the craftsmanship and technique used by the Currie family to install slate roofs. Also of architectural importance is the overall style of the house. The simplistic style of the house is reflective of outport construction but its large size is indicative of the fact that it was constructed for a well-to-do member of the community.

Source: Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador property file “Britannia - The Currie Premises – FPT 35”

Character Defining Elements

All original features of the house which relate to the simplicity of style, local craftsmanship and traditional construction techniques, including:
- Narrow clapboard, wood corner boards and simplicity of exterior decoration and detail;
- Original windows, window placement and trim;
- Original wooden doors and door placement; and
- Slate roof.

Location and History

Community Britannia
Significant 1921 - 1921
Builder
John T. Currie
Style 19th Century Vernacular
Building Plan Rectangular Long Façade