864, Queen Street East, Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, P6A, Canada
Links and documents
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
Built in 1888, the Algonquin Hotel is a four-storey brick structure located in close proximity to the north shore of the St. Marys River on the northwest corner of Queen Street East and Pim Street in Sault Ste. Marie.
The Algonquin Hotel has been recognized for its heritage value by the City of Sault Ste. Marie, By-law 83-60. It is also protected by a municipal heritage conservation easement.
The Algonquin Hotel is of heritage value because of its association with important developments, individuals and events in Sault Ste. Marie's early history and as a good example of Victorian commercial architecture in the city.
The Algonquin Hotel stands as an important link to the early history of the town of Sault Ste. Marie and its growth into a modern city. It serves as a reminder of the significant local contributions of William H. Plummer, a prominent local politician and businessman who built the hotel in 1888, and of the beginnings of the modern tourist trade in Sault Ste. Marie. The Algonquin is the sole survivor of the large hotels built close to the turn of the 20th century (in Sault Ste. Marie) to cater to a rapidly expanding industrial centre. These hotels were clustered around Sault Ste. Marie's docks to serve arriving settlers and workers.
The guest registry includes many prominent individuals including William H. Hearst, Premier of Ontario in 1914 and a resident of Sault Ste. Marie. Also found on the registry is the American industrialist Francis Hector Clergue, who stayed at the hotel in September of 1894 after he had successfully negotiated the purchase of the municipally-owned water power company, a purchase which marked the launch of the industrial empire Clergue would develop in Sault Ste. Marie in the coming years.
Significant events are also associated with the Algonquin hotel including a luncheon held in the dining room in honour of H.R.H. Prince Arthur, the Duke of Connaught and Governor General of Canada, and his daughter, Princess Patricia, when they visited the city in 1912.
Built in 1888 to the design of J. B. Sweatts from Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, the hotel is a good example of Victorian commercial architecture in Sault Ste. Marie. Sweatts architectural design for the hotel has influenced the design of other buildings in the city, most prominently the roof of the 'New American Hotel'.
Sources: Sault Ste. Marie Designation By-law 83-60, Algonquin Hotel Designation Report
Key elements that reflect the structure’s value as an important link to the early history of the town of Sault Ste. Marie and its growth into a modern city include:
-its central location in Sault Ste. Marie
-its close proximity to the site of the original docks
Key elements that reflect the structure’s value as a good example of Victorian commercial architecture include:
-the use of brick masonry, including the masonry arches over the windows
-the truncated tent roof which caps the southwest polygonal corner of the hotel
-the painted metal cornice on the Queen Street and Pim Street facades
-the chevron moulding on the Queen Street and Pim Street cornices
Local Governments (ON)
Ontario Heritage Act
Municipal Heritage Designation (Part IV)
Theme - Category and Type
- Building Social and Community Life
- Social Movements
Function - Category and Type
- Commerce / Commercial Services
- Eating or Drinking Establishment
- Multiple Dwelling
- Commerce / Commercial Services
- Hotel, Motel or Inn
Architect / Designer
Location of Supporting Documentation
Community Services Department, Recreation and Culture Division, City of Sault Ste. Marie
Cross-Reference to Collection
Sault Ste. Marie Museum; Sault Ste. Marie Public Library Archives