City of Markham    
    
   
Markham Register of Property of Cultural Heritage Value or Interest
 
Address: 2 LEGACY DR
Original Address:
Property Legal Description: PLAN 19 LOT 6
Historical Name: Box Grove Methodist Church and Cemetery
Heritage Conservation District:
Ward: 7
Year Built: 1877 -
Architect Style: Italianate, Vernaculas
Heritage Status of Property: Listed
Designation Bylaw:
Heritage Easement Agreement: No
       
History Description
The roots of the former Box Grove United Church go back to the early 1830s, when an Episcopal Methodist congregation became established in the hamlet of Sparta, later named Box Grove. A church building on this site appears on the ‘Plan of the Village of Sparta,’ dated 1850 (Plan 19). The location on this old plan, Lot 6, Block B, was within the portion of the village site owned by Joseph Tomlinson Sr., fronting on the road that wound through the Rouge River Valley to the south of the Mill Pond. This road (14th Avenue) did not follow the surveyed road allowance due to geographical conditions, and its picturesque route has endured to the present day. The congregation was part of the Markham-Sparta Circuit from 1831 to 1843, then became part of the Yonge Street Circuit from 1844 to 1884. It was not until 1869 that the land for the church and cemetery were deeded to the Methodist Episcopal Church in Canada by Sarah Wooley Tomlinson, following the death of her husband. The names of the first Trustees included William Beebe, Charles Patton and Henry Linnan. In 1877, a new church was constructed by the Methodists for a reported cost of $700. The Methodist Advocate of February, 1878 contained the following description of the building, written by the Reverend G.F. Byam: We have built and dedicated an unpretentious but neat and commodious little church in Box Grove. It is a frame structure 30 by 40 feet, painted inside and out, and furnished complete with carpet, chandelier and lamps; the whole constructed at moderate cost of not quite seven hundred dollars. Historically, there was an L-shaped drive shed and church hall located on the east side of the property. The hall was located on the second floor of part of the drive shed, and is believed to have formerly been the local Temperance Hall, relocated from the south side of 14th Avenue. The cemetery was enclosed by a five foot high picket fence. From 1884 to 1926, Box Grove was part of the same circuit as the Peaches congregation, then became associated with the Brown’s Corners United Church after the union of the Methodists, Presbyterians and Congregationalists in 1925. In 1963, a new entrance vestibule was added to the front of the church, but on the whole, the original character of the building has remained little altered from the 1870s to now. The church celebrated its 100th anniversary in the fall of 1977. With the development of the Legacy subdivision in the 1990s, the entrance driveway to the church was relocated and the address at 6722 14th Avenue was changed to 2 Legacy Drive.
 
Contemporary Photograph Heritage Photograph
       
Key Map
Please note that the red boundary is not indicative of the actual heritage area and is only meant to highlight the property the heritage building(s) is located at. For a complete description of the actual heritage property please refer to the Designation Bylaw found above.

   
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