Seventeenth-century stone construction at Ferryland, Newfoundland (area C)

Gaulton, Barry C. (1997) Seventeenth-century stone construction at Ferryland, Newfoundland (area C). Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

[img] [English] PDF (Migrated (PDF/A Conversion) from original format: (application/pdf)) - Accepted Version
Available under License - The author retains copyright ownership and moral rights in this thesis. Neither the thesis nor substantial extracts from it may be printed or otherwise reproduced without the author's permission.

Download (29Mb)
  • [img] [English] PDF - Accepted Version
    Available under License - The author retains copyright ownership and moral rights in this thesis. Neither the thesis nor substantial extracts from it may be printed or otherwise reproduced without the author's permission.
    (Original Version)

Abstract

Very little documentation exists on the architecture and construction techniques employed at early colonial establishments in seventeenth-century Newfoundland. In those cases when records have been kept, descriptions are often only from the fledgling years of the colonial venture or are vague and hence, open to broad interpretation. It is for these reasons that archaeological excavation is vital to our understanding of how colonists constructed their buildings, which tools they used and from where the raw materials originated. -- This thesis focuses on seventeenth-century stone construction as reflected in the archaeological remains excavated at Ferryland, Newfoundland (site Area C). The main points of investigation centre on the location of quarry sites used by early colonists, the dates to which Area C's structures were constructed, the functions of the buildings, the various construction techniques used in building these structures, the use of slate for roofing, possible Welsh or Devon construction influences and several aspects of colonial planning and economics. All of these topics were researched using a combination of geologic survey, artifact analysis, excavation, fieldwork in Britain, the recording of construction techniques and study of historical documents. -- The results show that Area C's stone structures were constructed in two separate phases, one in the 1620s and the second in the fourth quarter of the seventeenth century. A massive stone seawall, privy and slate-roofed storehouse constituted the first series of structures which were in use until the Dutch raid of 1673. Soon after this raid, a second structure was erected at Area C and served as a cowhouse-storage shed. This building, like many of the others at Ferryland, was destroyed as a result of the French attack in 1696. -- Both building phases involved the construction of thick slate-stone walls and flagstone or cobblestone floors. The raw materials for which were obtained from nearby slate/shale outcrops and a cobblestone beach. Thousands of roof slate fragments were also found in association with the storehouse destruction. From these remains it was possible to ascertain the slate sizes used at Area C and the various steps involved in the construction of a slate roof. -- The historical records and archaeological remains demonstrate that craftsmen from either Wales or Devon could have been involved in the first construction phase at Area C. By studying these stone structures it was also determined why Area C's waterfront buildings were constructed entirely of stone, how they played a integral role in the economics and operations of the early colony and how the changing lives of Ferryland's colonists are reflected in the two different construction phases.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/966
Item ID: 966
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 138-152
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Anthropology
Date: 1997
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Canada--Newfoundland and Labrador--Avalon Peninsula--Ferryland
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Building, Stone--Newfoundland and Labrador--Ferryland--History; Excavations (Archaeology)--Newfoundland and Labrador--Ferryland

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item

Downloads

Downloads per month over the past year

View more statistics