Annapolis Royal, Nova Scotia - Where History Meets Opportunity

Phone: 902.532.2043

253 St. George Street

253 St. George Street, Annapolis Royal, Nova Scotia, B0S 1A0, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1982/08/31

Front Facade, 2017

Side Facade, 2017

East Elevation

West Elevation

Bracket Detail

Other Name(s)
253 St. George Street
McCormick Building

Links and Documents

Construction Date(s)
1860/01/01 to 1874/01/01

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2005/03/02

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The municipally registered historic property at 253 St. George Street, commonly known as the McCormick Building, is a wood framed two and a half storied building with additions on the rear and north sides. Built in the Greek revival style it is at the apex of the upper and lower commercial district on the north side of St. George Street, Annapolis Royal, NS. The gable end of the building faces the street while the rear overlooks the panoramic view of Granville Ferry, the north mountain, and the Annapolis Basin. The remains of a wharf are still visible. A wooden walk runs between the building and the wharf as part of the town’s public walkway starting at King’s Theatre and extending towards Fort Anne. The designation includes the building and surrounding property.

Heritage Value

The historical value of the McCormick building lies in its architectural style and the continuity of ownership and use by one family, and contribution to the surrounding streetscape. Between 1885 and 1921 three major fires destroyed much of the downtown core of Annapolis Royal, leaving the McCormick building an example of the mid nineteenth century commercial buildings in the town.

The building was built between 1860 and 1874 by merchant William McCormick. The building was built on the shores of the Annapolis Basin to allow schooners to moor at McCormick’s wharf and unload their goods and reload.

The architectural value of the McCormick building is its simple Greek Revival Style. The building’s gable end faced the road. This “gable-end-to-the-road” is rare in commercial buildings, as are the building’s paired brackets. The return of the cornice supported by heavy double brackets illustrates clearly the Greek Revival Style. The window moldings suggest a more detailed period while the pilasters on the corner and across the front are flat with simple Doric capitals. The off center doors retain original styling. This building is important as it contributes to the pattern of heritage buildings in the commercial district of Annapolis Royal.

Source: Town of Annapolis Royal, Heritage File, 253 St. George Street.

Character-defining Elements

Character defining elements of the McCormick Building include:

- position of the building as to the apex of the upper and lower business districts, and proximity to the Annapolis Basin;
- irregular massing of the building;
- gable end to the street;
- all Greek Revival elements including: window size, proportion and pattern; original boxed cornice and frieze with paired brackets; and plain pilasters on the corners and across the front with the Doric capitals;
- orignal and historic wood clapboard, wood trim, and wood finish elements;
- originally styled wood and glass doors;
- continual use as a commercial space.


Nova Scotia

Recognition Authority
Local Governments (NS)

Recognition Statute
Heritage Property Act

Recognition Type
Municipally Registered Property

Recognition Date

Historical Information

Significant Date(s)
1885/01/01 to 1921/01/01

Theme - Category and Type
Developing Economies
Trade and Commerce

Function - Category and Type

Commerce / Commercial Services
Shop or Wholesale Establishment
Commerce / Commercial Services

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation
Town of Annapolis Royal, 285 St.George Street, PO Box 310, Annapolis Royal, NS, B0S 1A0

FED/PROV/TERR Identifier