Photo Credit: Ontario Heritage Trust

Ontario Heritage Trust museums open for the summer!


Monday, May 13, 2019 12:00:00 PM

If you're looking for a compelling experience in your community or across the province, then check out one (or more!) of Ontario Heritage Trust's museums this summer. These provincially significant sites explore Ontario's shared history and bring it to life through interactive public tours, exhibits and special events.

Uncle Tom's Cabin Historic Site, Dresden, Chatham-Kent
Uncle Tom's Cabin Historic Site hosts interactive, thought-provoking exhibits exploring the life and leadership of Josiah Henson – an abolitionist, preacher and conductor of the Underground Railroad. The site also explores the contributions of people of African descent to Canadian culture and society. Each August Civic Holiday weekend (this year on August 3, 2019), the site hosts Emancipation Day – with speakers, performers, exhibits and cuisine reflecting early Black life in Ontario. Summer season: open most days from Saturday, May 18 to Friday, October 25 – check website for specific dates and times. Year-round school visits and group tours by appointment.

Fulford Place, Brockville
Get a rare glimpse of the luxurious lifestyle of another era. Discover the story of Senator George T. Fulford, explore the grand Fulford mansion and marvel at the many original family furnishings. Stroll through the restored gardens – designed by the Olmsted Brothers – and immerse yourself in Ontario's rich heritage. And take a guided tour of the mansion built by Senator George T. Fulford, purveyor of Pink Pills for Pale People. After the tour, explore our new exhibits for the 2019 season. Summer season Saturday, June 1 to Sunday, September 1; year-round school visits and group tours by appointment.

Homewood Museum, Maitland (near Brockville)
Step into one of Ontario's oldest houses dedicated to interpreting the life of Dr. Solomon Jones (1756-1822), a United Empire Loyalist and the area's first physician. See Solomon and Mary's original family furnishings and heirlooms and discover the story behind the internationally-known Red Fameuse apple. See where seven generations of the Jones family chose to call home and immerse yourself in Ontario's rich heritage. Open Saturday, June 1 to Sunday, September 1.

The Elgin and Winter Garden Theatre Centre, Toronto
A National Historic Site, the Elgin and Winter Garden Theatres are the last operating double-decker theatres in the world. Take a guided tour of the elegant Elgin Theatre and then travel seven stories up to the whimsical Winter Garden Theatre. Special features include samples of the world's largest collection of vaudeville scenery and the newly restored leaf ceiling in the Winter Garden. Plus, catch a production of Come From Away, the hit Broadway musical, which is running in the Elgin Theatre until September 27. Open year-round with public tours twice per week and group tours by appointment.

Niagara Apothecary, Niagara-on-the-Lake
This National Historic Site shows how pharmacists practised medicine 150 years ago, from liquor to miracle cure-alls for everything from hair loss to tuberculosis. Operated by the Ontario College of Pharmacists. Open daily from Saturday, May 11 to Monday, September 2, open weekends only from September 7 to October 14.

Macdonell-Williamson House, Chute-à-Blondeau (near Hawkesbury)
Visit one of the Trust's other National Historic Sites, the former home of John and Magdeleine Macdonell. John was a fur trader with the North West Company in the early 1800s who sponsored construction of the first steamboat on the Ottawa River. Operated by the Friends of Macdonell-Williamson House/Les Amis de la maison Macdonell-Williamson. Open weekends from Saturday, June 29 to Sunday, September 1.

Mather-Walls House, Kenora
The Mather-Walls House, built in an understated version of the exuberant Queen Anne style, is one of three nearly-identical houses John Mather built for his employees. Mather, an enterprising businessman who formed the Keewatin Lumbering and Manufacturing Company in the late 1800s, played a large role in the economic expansion of the area. Operated by the Lake of the Woods Historical Society, it currently hosts tours during the summer. Open May to September, Monday to Saturday.

Sir Harry Oakes Chateau, Kirkland Lake
See the impressive chateau of Sir Harry Oakes and his wife Eunice, now home to the Museum of Northern History operated by the City of Kirkland Lake. Harry was the famous prospector of the gold-mining era that put Kirkland Lake on the map. Open for summer hours Wednesday, May 1 to Monday, October 14.

For a full listing of site hours, admission rates and locations please see the Ontario Heritage Trust museums website.

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Ontario Heritage Trust sites are also popular venues for special events and film shoots. Find out more about booking our most popular sites, including Enoch Turner Schoolhouse, the Ontario Heritage Centre and the Elgin and Winter Garden Theatre Centre.