The Historical Society of Ottawa (HSO) is Ottawa’s oldest historical organization.The principal aim of the Society is to increase public knowledge of the history of Ottawa and the surrounding region through meetings, tours, awards, publications, and sponsored research.

Monthly meetings are held and at each meeting, a speaker informs and engages members and guests about a topic of local historical interest. (Click here for a list of our upcoming meetings.)

We invite you to tour our site to see what we do and learn about the projects and services we offer. If you have any questions or comments about our site, please email us. We'll do our best to answer.

Ottawa Then and Now

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    View of Parliament Hill from Interprovincial bridge, c. 1906, City of Ottawa Archives/MG513/CA001240
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    Parliament Hill Today
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    Rideau Canal with boat, c.1860, Bytown or Bust
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    A busy summer afternoon today on the Rideau Canal beside the National Arts Centre in downtown Ottawa
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    Hockey players on Canal, c. 1901, Library and Archives Canada, PA-133406
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    Skaters on the canal today enjoying an afternoon outing.
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    Nurses and Tulips in front of the Civic Hospital, c. 1950, photographer unknown, Canada, Minister of Manpower and Immigration, Library and Archives Canada, MIKAN No. 4365985
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    The annual Spring show of tulip colour today
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    Major's Hill Park, c. 1889, National Capital Commission
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    A Fall day in Major's Hill Park today
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    Dedication of the National War Memorial, 1939, during the visit of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth
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    The National War Memorial and Tomb of the Unknown Soldier today during November 11th Remembrance Day Ceremony
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    Col. Ross and Governor General Foot Guards, c. 1875, Library and Archives Canada, C-000641
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    Band of the Governor General Foot Guards Today

Today in Ottawa's History

Ottawa has an interesting and varied history. Stop for a moment to read a couple of brief accounts of two engaging or important events that occured during a past month of August in Ottawa’s history.

James Powell, the author of the blog, "Today in Ottawa's History", helps to bring our shared history to life through his blog postings. He has given us permission to repost new entries here each month.

Check back monthly throughout the year to read two new articles.

Our Patron

The Governor General, Her Excellency, The Right Honourable Julie Payette, has kindly consented to be our Patron, continuing a tradition that began more than a century ago.

Our Patron: Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette C.C., C.M.M., C.O.M., C.Q., C.D.
Governor General and Commander-in-Chief of Canada