October 10, 2012

0356 CANADA (Nova Scotia) - Old Town Lunenburg - The Lunenburg Academy (UNESCO WHS)

Now the second-smallest province in Canada, Nova Scotia (as the entire Acadia in fact) was inhabited for centuries by Mi’kmaq, a First Nations people, to whom was joined, since 1604, the French Catholic settlers. For the next 150 years took place many wars between New England and New France and their native allies, concluded with the defeat of French by British in North America (1763), but despite this, Nova Scotia remained primarily occupied by Catholic Acadians and Mi'kmaq. Although it was considered "the 14th American Colony", Nova Scotia doesn't joined the colonists in American Revolution (1776–1783), it supporting the British.

After the Conquest of Acadia in 1710, of course that the British began to build  their own settlements, populated with Protestant colonists and defended by fortifications. So was founded Lunenburg in 1753, at approximately 90km southwest of Halifax, who was erected four years earlier. The locals didn't stood idly by, and between 1756 and 1759 the Wabanaki Confederacy raided the settlement no less than nine times. During the American Revolution, the American Privateers devastated and looted the town two times.

Lunenburg (named in honour of King George II, Duke of Braunschweig-Lüneburg) has a history of being an important seaport and shipbuilding centre, but in nowadays tourism is its most important industry, especially after that in 1995 was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site, under the name Old Town Lunenburg, because "it has retained its original layout and overall appearance, based on a rectangular grid pattern drawn up in the home country. The inhabitants have managed to safeguard the city's identity throughout the centuries by preserving the wooden architecture of the houses, some of which date from the 18th century."

As it says on the official website of the town, which now has only 2,313 inhabitants, "colonial Lunenburg sprang from the quill and imagination of Charles Morris, who as Surveyor General for the British Empire had planned many towns in the orderly gridiron that smoothly linked harbour to hills, commerce to culture. [...] Nearly 250 years after its first streets were laid, the original plans, the architecture and the uses for common spaces remain intact. New construction complements rather than replaces. New vision reveres the old."

The Lunenburg Academy (in the picture), a beautiful example of Second Empire architecture with wood frame, erected between 1894 and 1895, after the old building was destroyed by fire a year ago, is still used as a school. Standing on top of Gallows Hill, hence visible for miles around, it is a landmark of the town, and also the only intact 19th century Academy building surviving in Nova Scotia.

The Educational Review of February, 1896 described the Academy as follows: "The ground floor contains six large classrooms with separate cloakrooms for boys and girls. The second floor contains six classrooms, cloakrooms, laboratory and library. There is a large assembly hall (on the third floor) capable of seating over 400. The ceilings throughout are of white wood and beautifully panelled. The floors and wainscotting are of white birch while the rest of the interior is finished in ash and birch. Four towers adorn the building in one of which a large bell weighing over 600 pounds has been placed."

About the stamp
As this one, the stamp is also part of the series of definitive stamps (designed by Monique Dufour and Sophie Lafortune) featuring cutest baby creatures - Baby Wildlife, but this time is from the set issued in 2012 (January 16), which comprises the following stamps:
• the raccoons (Permanent™ Domestic)
• the caribou (US: $1.05)
• the loons (Oversized mail: $1.29)
• the moose (International: $1.80) - it's on the postcard

Lunenburg, Nova Scotia - Wikipedia
Old Town Lunenburg - UNESCO official site
Town of Lunenburg - Lunenburg official site
Definitives: Baby Wildlife - Canada Post official site

sender: Leonard Clarke
sent from Halifax (Nova Scotia / Canada), on 22.06.2012
photo: Arthur Burchell

No comments:

Post a Comment