Parks Canada

Parks Canada

May 19, 2009 10:33 ET

Government of Canada Recognizes the National Historical Significance of Sainte-Marie Church

SAINTE-MARIE, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - May 19, 2009) - On behalf of the Honourable Jim Prentice, Canada's Environment Minister and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, Maxime Bernier, Member of Parliament for Beauce, today unveiled a Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada plaque commemorating the national historical significance of the Church of Sainte-Marie.

"The Church of Sainte-Marie is an outstanding achievement that occupies a prime location in the heart of the municipality. The interest shown by the City of Sainte-Marie and local cultural organizations, notably the Beauce Historical Society, to ensure the preservation and development of this building eloquently demonstrates the historical and cultural significance it holds for the community," said Mr. Bernier.

Built between 1857 and 1859 to a design by architect Charles Baillairge, this church is a fine example of Gothic Revival churches found in French-Canadian parishes beginning in the 19th century. Inside, Gothic Revival architecture, with pointed arches accentuating the verticality of the space, blends with superb ornamentation by artist Francois-Edouard Meloche. The decoration is distinguished by well-executed paintings in trompe l'oil, which gives the illusion of depth, and in grisaille, which uses shades of the same colour. The rich interior creates a striking contrast with the simple exterior of this church.

"The Church of Sainte-Marie was the fruit of a remarkable collaboration between architect Charles Baillarge and painter Francois-Edouard Meloche. The magnificent creation that resulted deserves to be commemorated for present and future generations. It is an outstanding achievement whose distinctive character must be recognized," said Minister Prentice.

Created in 1919, the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada advises the Minister of the Environment about the national historical significance of persons, places, and events that have marked Canada's history. The placement of a commemorative plaque represents an official recognition of their historical value to the country.

(Also available at under Media Room)

Contact Information

  • Parks Canada
    Priscille Bourque
    Communications Advisor
    Office of the Director General, Eastern Canada