Historic Properties built with Ancient Rock

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A wall of local meta-sedimentary rocks in one of the Historic Properties on the Halifax waterfront, Nova Scotia, Canada.

Many of the dressed stones in the construction of the late 18th and 19th century Historic Properties on Halifax waterfront, Nova Scotia, like this old privateers’ warehouse, are likely to have been quarried from the local meta-sedimentary rocks that under-lie the city and its surrounds. These strata include the Goldenville Formation and the Halifax Formation which were formed during the late Proterozoic, the Cambrian, and the Ordovician Periods from about 544 to 470 million years ago – that’s about as ancient as it gets!

These types of rocks can also be found in the rip-rap used as sea defence on the Halifax waterfront.


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2 Replies to “Historic Properties built with Ancient Rock”

  1. Hi Jessica, I will be teaching a geology course at Dal, in Truro in the winter semester. can I get your permission to use the materials that you have on line about the geology of NS building please. I will of course attribute the materials to you.

    I am also looking for an old, I am guessing 1980s or 1990s document that looked at the geology of a lot of Halifax buildings. Do you happen to know anything about that? My recollection is that it was produced by a wonderful man, I think that his name was Don Keith, but I may be wrong about that. Any info that you have would be very much appreciated 🙂

    I look forward to your reply 🙂



  2. Hello, Jeff. Yes, it is okay to use materials about the geology of Nova Scotia buildings in your geology course as long as it is credited. I am not certain about the document you are looking for but there is a publication by G. B. Dickie called “Building Stone of Nova Scotia”, Nova Scotia Department of Natural Resources, Mineral Resources Branch, Economic Geology Series ME 1996-1. Page 45 describes the location of King Quarry at Purcells Cove near Halifax from which ironstone was excavated, and this may be where the building materials for the Historic Properties came from. Unfortunately the link in my post to the information I used in writing about Historic Properties is no longer valid and I cannot source a revised version of the site.
    Hope this helps


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