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McGill University (Montreal, Quebec, Canada)

McGill University is the oldest in Montreal.  Founded in 1821 thanks to the generous bequest of prominent Scottish merchant, James McGill, who drafted a petition in 1787 to improve Montreal’s education system. In 1884 women were allowed to attend classes at the university.


In addition to being Canada’s number one university, McGill ranked 24th in the world for top universities. McGill has also played a big part in the world of sports.  On May 13-14, 1874, McGill played the first modern football game against Harvard in Cambridge, MA. Harvard enjoyed the Canadian innovations of the game, they introduced them into a match versus Yale. Thus creating the roots for “college football”.

McGill Football game

On March 3, 1875 McGill played first indoor hockey game.  Two years later, the world’s first official hockey team was formed, The McGill Hockey Club and later introduced the world to a rubber puck.

McGill hockey

McGill grad student, James Naismith (BA 1887) was working at the Massachusetts YMCA and was asked to invent an athletic game to be played indoors to provide a distraction to the rowdy kids stuck indoors in the harsh winters. Naismith’s game consisted of a soccer ball which was thrown into a peach basket suspended 10 feet in the air, creating the game known as Basketball.

McGill Basketball

McGill alumni include; 139 Rhodes Scholars, 12 Nobel Prize Winners, 3 Canadian Prime Ministers, 13 justices of the Canadian Supreme Court, 28 foreign Ambassadors, 9 academy award winners, 11 Grammy award winners, 3 Pulitzer prize winners and 28 Olympic medalists.





North Country Slate project references at McGill University:

  • MacDonald Engineering Building (Semi-Weathering Green, 16” x 8” x 3/8”)
  • MacDonald Stewart Building (Semi-Weathering Green, 16” x 8” x 3/8”)
  • Chancellor Day Hall (Unfading Red, 16” x 8” x ¼”)
  • Davis Pavilion (Unfading Green, 18” x random width x ¼”)
  • Redpath Library (Unfading Black, 16” x 8” x ¼” special trim)
  • Meredith Annex (Unfading Black, 16” x 8” x ¼”)
  • McTavish Pumping Station (Unfading Black, 16” x 8” x ¼”
  • Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital – 3479 rue Peel (Unfading Black, 16” x 8” x ¼”)
  • Campus and Space Planning – 3483 rue Peel (Unfading Black, 16” x 8” x ¼”)
  • Department of English – 3487 rue Peel (Unfading Black, 16” x 8” x ¼”

Toronto Silver Plate Building (now known as The Fashion House Condos) – 570 King Street West, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Built in 1882 for James A Watt’s Toronto Silver Plate Company, the building is a classic example of a late 19th century industrial building; 4 story rectangular shaped, red brick cladding, stone trim, and slate gable roof. The company was the first in Canada to manufacture silver plated products and remained in business until 1929.… Continue Reading

Murphy’s Windmill – Southwest corner of Golden Gate Park (near 48th Avenue and Lincoln Way) San Francisco, CA

  Built in 1905, the windmill pumped 40,000 gallons of water per day for irrigation at Golden Gate Park.  Named after Samuel G Murphy, a prominent San Francisco banker who donated $20,000 for its construction. The six story windmill was the largest in the world when it was built.  Unlike other windmills, this one had… Continue Reading


Located in Columbus, Indiana, the North Christian Church was one of the last buildings designed by famous Finnish architect, Eero Saarinen.   Saarinen wanted to create a modern, contemporary church but also felt it was important to keep the interior design as a traditional place of worship.  His final design was an impressive hexagonal building… Continue Reading

Vermilion Parish Courthouse – 100 S State Street, Abbeville, LA

  Abbeville is a small city in the Vermilion Parish of Louisiana and is located 20 miles southwest of Lafayette.  Founded in 1854 by French missionary Père Antoine Desire Mégret, the city was patterned on a French Provencal Village and the first settlers were French speaking Acadians from Nova Scotia.   The Vermilion Parish Courthouse is located… Continue Reading

The Stout House – 1105 Locust Street (South Locust and 11th Street) – Dubuque, IA

The Stout House was designed by architect John Spencer and built in 1890 for Frank D Stout, a lumber baron.   The large home was split up into personal living space and business.  Mr. Stout operated his business from the first floor which displayed the various wood flooring he sold.   This impressive red Minnesota sandstone… Continue Reading

Lady Meredith House (McGill University) – 1110 Pine Avenue, Montreal, QC

The Golden Square Mile (Le Mille Carré Doré) is located at the foot of Mount Royal.  It’s a small neighbourhood built between 1850 and 1930. The Lady Meredith mansion was originally named Ardvarna and was completed in 1897. The house was originally part of the Simon McTavish estate which was sold off by his heirs.… Continue Reading

Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Co (B & O) – 901 W Pratt Street, Baltimore, MD

  The Roundhouse was built in 1884 for $100,471.97.  This massive circular structure is 245 feet in diameter, 135 feet high, 46,000 square feet and takes up almost 1 acre.  Designed by architect, Ephraim Francis Balwin, the Roundhouse was originally built as a passenger car shop and later became the B&O Museum.  Recognized as the… Continue Reading

A new makeover for The Cathedral of Saint Paul (St. Paul’s Cathedral) in Birmingham, Alabama (2120 3rd Ave N) 2016 NRCA Gold Circle Award for Outstanding Workmanship (steep-slope)

  The City of Birmingham, Alabama was founded in 1871. Twenty-two years later the St. Paul’s Cathedral was completed at an estimated cost of approximately $90,000. Designed by German born architect Adolphus Druiding, who immigrated to the United States in 1865, left his legacy designing over forty-one Roman Catholic churches throughout the Midwest.   St.… Continue Reading