Showing posts with label Architecture of Newfoundland. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Architecture of Newfoundland. Show all posts

Friday, June 17, 2016

Wandering Pavilion - Call for Volunteers

We were asked by the folks at Wandering Pavilion if we could pass along their post!
We're looking for volunteers to collect stories using the Wandering Pavilion

The goal of the Wandering Pavilion is to empower individuals, groups and organizations to use architecture and urbanism to make their communities better. The pavilion brings people together to start a proactive and positive discussion about built environment, public space and community. What does your neighbourhood need, a vegetable stand? If so, what does that look like, where would it go? The Wandering Pavilion provides the physical building blocks to see what this would look like, it makes your ideas a reality for a brief period. This temporary installation serves as a catalyst to show people what their ideas look like and bring the people together who can actually make it happen.

In a similar style to the Story Corps project, we will be collecting stories at the Wandering Pavilion this summer from July 10-22 tentatively. We need people to help us get these stories. We'll have a list of questions focused on the built and natural environment that can help start conversation. We're looking for volunteers to fill one or more 3-4 hour time slots recording audio and/or sorting through the audio we receive.

To say thanks for helping out, we'll give you a certificate for a free lunch. To record the stories you'll be able to use the University's sound recording equipment. We'll use the stories we record to put together a podcast released as a season of a show called Sounds like an Earful. To confirm your participation and reserve a time slot please contact Emily Campbell at For more information about the Wandering Pavilion, visit our website.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Another peak inside the Marshall Building/Stott Vaults, 123 Water Street #nlheritage #architecture

This week, the NL Historic Trust reported on its Facebook page about the possible upcoming demolition of the old brick and stone vaults located at 123 Water Street, shown in the exterior photo above, from May 2005. The Trust writes:
"St. John's City Councillor Sandy Hickman said today that the developer of the new Alt Hotel - which will likely occupy the vacant lot at the corner of Prescott and Water, the former Marshall Brothers property - considered keeping the vaults on the property but they are not structurally viable."
The Trust included a link to a fabulous set of photos taken by local photographer Paul Kinsman, which you can check out here.

The Trust and Kinsman both refer to the vaults as belonging to the Marshall Bros. store, but the earlier history of the vaults is linked to a merchant by the name of Stott.

The entire area surrounding 123-125 Water was destroyed in the 1892 fire. Prior to 1892 there was a stone structure on the site, which possibly belonged to James Stott, a liquor and spirits dealer. As a result of the fire, Water Street was realigned, so the location of the later-day 123-125 Water Street did not sit exactly on top of the building site that was pre fire. The older structure was set back from the current street line. It is possible that these vaults belong to the stone building that was destroyed in the 1892 fire. This would explain rubble that was uncovered on top of the vaults during the demolition of the building above it, which may have dated to the period of the fire.

According to research submitted by Neachel Keeping of the City Archives on June 6, 2005, the building over top of the vaults was owned and let to a variety of tenants. From 1880-1918, the owner/occupier was James Stott, General Merchant (Stott rebuilt on same site after 1892 fire). From 1918-1921, the owner was still listed as James Stott, but from 1923-1963 it was owned by the Stott Estate (Stott died sometime between 1921 and 1923).

This is what the interior looked like in October of 2003, prior to the demolition of the building above it:

Additional photos taken November 2004:

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Convent Life -- The Witless Bay Folklore Fieldschool

Right now the new graduate students to MUN's Department of Folklore are nearing the end of their second week of the Witless Bay Field School.  This intensive round-the-clock research methods program is three weeks long and is taking place all around Witless Bay on the Southern Shore. The students are staying together in the local convent--a historic building with many rooms, two large staircases, a confession booth, and a chapel, which is serving as their classroom. It's also a building that is no stranger to communal living, so it's essentially perfect housing for the field school participants.

Over the past week, I visited the students a few times to check on their progress and provide a workshop on some of the data entry they will be doing when they are at the archiving stage of their work. Based on my time with them, I must say that I'm envious of the incredible experience they are having. I took a few photographs that I will share below, but they don't really convey the story of their lives in the convent. Lucky for us, the MA students are blogging about what they are learning and who they are meeting, so please follow them here:


MA student Terra Barrett in her sleeping quarters.

Religious artifacts that come with the territory.

MA student Andrea McGuire as she explores the church next to the convent.

Dr. Pocius with some students as we check out the top floor of the Priest's house (currently for sale in Witless Bay!)

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Tuesday's Folklore Photo: and now for something completely different

Okay, so I might be cheating a bit with today's folklore photo, as the real focus of the post is actually a reel-to-reel film. We often have the most random items dropped off to us at the Intangible Cultural Heritage Office, which we're more than happy to receive. As cultural and heritage mediators and facilitators, we often become the custodians of items in order to preserve and make them accessible to the public.

We recently came into possession of a 12 inch reel-to reel film entitled Architecture of Newfoundland and were tasked with figuring out how to digitize it. To our delight, it has already been digitized and made available to the public via Memorial University's Digital Archives Initiative. This film was produced by the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador and is a fantastic snapshot of architecture in the province in 1975. The film has been made available to view in its entirety by Memorial University of Newfoundland Distance Education, Learning and Teaching Support (DELTS). 

Click here to watch Architecture of Newfoundland!