Breathtaking natural beauty and heart-wrenching human history! The Chilkoot Trail, managed by Parks Canada, is the same 53 km (33mi) trek that tested First Nation traders and gold-hungry dreamers. Let the spirit of people whose courage helped them survive the rugged northern wilderness inspire you. Hike the trail and share the challenge of those who reached the Klondike. Or, simply enjoy day trips and camping with friends and family at Lindeman City and historic Bennett Lake where you can visit a Victorian-era church still standing in a vanished boom town.
St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church
Bennett Lake, British Columbia
St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church was erected in 1899 to plans prepared by Reverend
J.A. Sinclair. It has been identified as a major historical resource within Chilkoot Trail
National Historic Site.
The church was initially established to directly serve the needs of gold seekers en route to the Klondike. As the only standing building left in the once-thriving community of Bennett, St. Andrew’s Church provides a unique example of that town’s very existence. It not only housed church services (for both Presbyterians and Anglicans), but weekly social and entertainment events, occasional political meetings, and served as a community centre. Reverend J.A. Sinclair who is associated with the church, was one of those heroic, yet down-to-earth clergymen, who had an ability to assess the community’s needs and fulfill them. St. Andrew’s Church is an excellent example of frontier aesthetics based on a combination of fashionable High Victorian Gothic design, and use of indigenous materials, and weatherproofing construction techniques. The church always stood as a prominent structure in its surrounding environment, originally as the centre of a booming town, now as a landmark in a national historic site.