Visiting the former Methodist - now United - Church, Locust Hill, Markham, Ontario: 19th century Gothic solidity
This item may be of interest
With a striking rose window
This solid, building, executed in Gothic style, dates from approximately 1890. Thus, as one might expect with this style, which underwent somewhat a revival in the 19th century, we see pointed arches in profusion at windows, and flying buttresses. Overall, even at this small building, there is a strong sense of solidity.
Interestingly, the main entrance doorway departs from the pointed Gothic arch pattern of the rest of the building by being rounded in shape instead.
A particularly striking feature at this building is a rose window, which in architectural terms draws ultimately from Medieval Gothic influence. (I have supplied, right, a diagram of a rose window, taken from a 19th century architectural manual.)
Over Highway 7 opposite Locust Hill United Church is a cemetery which predates the building. this cemetery was already in use in about 1843. Included among prominent family names of people buried in the United Church cemetery here are members of the Reesor family, for whom a local road is also named, who were of Bernese Swiss extraction (1).
A local member of the Reesor family is said to have possessed a number of locust trees on the property, and this is how the name of the hamlet materialized.
Prior to the organization of the United Church in the 1920s, this church building belonged to Wesleyan Methodists (2).
Locust Hill United Church, and the hamlet of Locust Hill for which it is named, is located in the south-eastern corner of Markham, in Ontario's York Region, at 7668 Highway 7 East, Locust Hill, Markham.
The settlement of Locust Hill came into existence in about 1799. Prior to the suppression of a railroad stop in Locust Hill, the hamlet was relatively thriving as a community. With the huge expansion of Markham in recent years, I wonder whether the eventual destiny of Locust Hill is to become an urban suburb of Markham?
February 23, 2016
(1) See also: http://reesorfamily.on.ca/ Many of Ontario's European pioneer residents first came to North America via the United States / the 13 Colonies, prior to American Independence.
(2) See also: http://geneofun.on.ca/cems/ON/ONYOR14799
Some sourcing: Wikipedia
Also worth seeing
In Locust Hill itself, a few hundred metres to the west of Locust Hill United Church, is a pioneer memorial cairn in honour of the Reesor (originally Rieser) family from Switzerland, of Mennonite persuasion, who in the 18th century sought freedom of conscience in North America.
Also in Markham, i Markham Museum (distance: 6.9 kilometres) incorporates an Historic Village; its archives have strengths in local history.
How to get there: Air Canada, flies to Toronto Pearson Airport, with wide North American and other connections, from where car rental is available. (Distance from Toronto Pearson Airport to 7668 Highway 7 East, Locust Hill, Markham: 46.9 kilometres). Please note that some facilities may be withdrawn, without notice. Please check with the airline or your travel agent for up to date information. You are advised to refer to appropriate consular sources for any special border crossing arrangements which may apply to citizens of certain nationalities.
MJFenn is an independent travel writer based in Ontario, Canada
Other of my hubpages may also be of interest
- Visiting the Zion Schoolhouse, North York, Ontario: throwback to rural education in the Victorian er
This striking, formerly rural schoolhouse was originally situated in the Ontario locality of L'Amaroux, where farming families would send their children. L'Amaroux was subsequently absorbed into North York, which, as is widely known, was itself...
- Visiting Ontario's Gibson House at Willowdale: local roots and memories of exile
Once a quiet country area close to historic Yonge Street, Willowdale is now part of Toronto, following the incorporation in recent years of North York into Toronto's Metropolitan area. When David Gibson built the house which is now a local...
- Visiting the historic Erskine Church: memories of 19th century Pickering, Ontario
In the Durham Region's Pickering, the Erskine Church serves as a link of continuity with the city's past. 19th century origins Already by 1954, the church building's centenary was being commemorated. An historical booklet was issued for this...
- Visiting Ajax, Ontario: Rural Gothic Revival architecture, at Post Hill House
This rather pleasing house at 132 Kingston Road West is the sole surviving example in Ontario's Town of Ajax of Rural Gothic Revival. 19th century background 'Rural' it certainly was in what is now Ajax: previously, the town of Pickering was...
- Visiting Bergholz, New York: German heritage since 1843
In the centre of the village, a stone monument bears a plaque inscribed: 'BERGHOLZ GERMAN LUTHERAN SETTLEMENT FOUNDED OCT. 12 1843'. And German Americans, mainly Lutheran, have been there ever since. The monument is situated on a green,...