Links to Web Sites of Historical Interest in the Ottawa Area


Canadian National Digital Heritage Index (The) - "The Canadian National Digital Heritage Index (CNDHI) is an index of digitized Canadian heritage collections located at Canadian universities and provincial and territorial libraries. Supported by funding from Library and Archives Canada and the Canadian Research Knowledge Network, CNDHI is designed to increase awareness of, and access to digital heritage collections in Canada, to support the academic research enterprise and to facilitate information sharing within the Canadian documentary heritage community."

Canadiana Collections - "With the support of major memory institutions, CRKN identifies, catalogues, and digitizes documentary heritage—books, newspapers, periodicals, images and nationally-significant archival materials—in specialized searchable databases."

CBC Historical Archives - "The CBC Archives {is} a unique collaboration of creative teams in Toronto working together with archivists and educational writers across Canada."

Capital Heritage Connexion - The Capital Heritage Connexion/Patrimoine de la Capitale is an umbrella organization serving heritage stakeholders in Canada’s Capital area. The CHC plays a leading role in developing and sustaining Ottawa’s heritage sector and ensuring local residents have access to heritage.

City of Ottawa Archives
- "Discover Ottawa's hidden treasures. Explore more than three million photographs, research your home or family and bring the past into the present. The caretakers of Ottawa’s documentary history, the City of Ottawa Archives, are mandated to preserve original documents on behalf of past and future generations. Ottawa’s history lives here. Uncover and discover for yourself."

Friends of the Ottawa Archives
"Created to preserve and share evidence of our collective memory, it also exemplifies what can emerge when cooperative stakeholders appreciate that the very nature of their teamwork serves the city - in the present and for the future."

Gloucester Historical Society
- "An organization for preserving and promoting the history of the former Gloucester Township."

Glengarry History
- "Glengarry History has been formed ... with the intent of acting as a liaison and partnership group for other organizations active in the area of preserving the history of Glengarry."

Goulbourn Township Historical Society
- "Welcome to the Goulbourn Township Historical Society – a community group dedicated to the history of the former Goulbourn Township, now amalgamated into the City of Ottawa in Ontario, Canada.If you have ties with Goulbourn, or are interested in history generally, you might Richmond-Fair-2010 for webwant to join us."

Heritage Ottawa
- "We are a group of dedicated volunteers who are passionate in our commitment to promote awareness, appreciation and preservation of outstanding examples of historic buildings and places in Ottawa and the National Capital Region."

Huntley Township Historical Society
- "The Huntley Township Historical Society was formed in 1985 ... [t]o collect historical and genealogical material and establish a repository of information and artifacts on the former Huntley Township for research purposes and as a contribution to Canadian history, and to publish and display related materials."

Library and Archives Canada
- Library and Archives Canada’s "mandate is as follows: to preserve the documentary heritage of Canada for the benefit of present and future generations; to be a source of enduring knowledge accessible to all, contributing to the cultural, social and economic advancement of Canada as a free and democratic society; to facilitate in Canada co-operation among communities involved in the acquisition, preservation and diffusion of knowledge; to serve as the continuing memory of the Government of Canada and its institutions."

Old Ottawa South History Project
- "We are a group of local amateur historians whose interest is to research, document, and present facts and information about the history of Old Ottawa South in a fun and informative way."

The Rideau Canal
- "is a non-commercial site run (and paid for) on a hobby basis by Ken Watson."

The Rideau Township Historical Society
- "Preserving and promoting local history for the former Rideau Township."

Bytown Museum - "Located in the heart of downtown Ottawa, the Bytown Museum explores the stories of an evolving city and its residents from its early days as Bytown to present day Ottawa."

Museums in Ottawa - A list of the museums in Ottawa and surrounding area.

Perth & Area Museums - A list of the museums in Perth and surrounding area.

Renfrew County Museums Network - "The Renfrew County Museums Network (RCMN) was formed in 2002 so that all of the county museums in operation at that time could both share technical information and collectively promote their facilities. ... At our museums throughout Renfrew County we celebrate the stories that have shaped the history of Canada."

[This is an incomplete list of private sites that focus on Ottawa history. The Historical Society of Ottawa does not necessarily subscribe to the views expressed in these blogs, nor can it attest to their accuracy. ]

Britannia, A History - "This site is about the community of Britannia in Ottawa, Canada. It is mostly about the history, but ... [i]t is incomplete and always will be. ... Really it is more like an encyclopedia of Britannia; a collection of articles and information, not a single, continuous story."

Bytown or Bust - "A digital history of Eastern Ontario and Western Quebec, including the cities of Ottawa and Hull / Gatineau from c.1600 to 2015"

Colin Churcher’s Railway Pages - "Welcome to my home page. I live in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. I have been interested in railways for many years and have been fortunate to pursue a career in railways. In these pages I will be setting out various aspects of my interest."

A History of Ottawa East - "Published May, 2004 by the Old Ottawa East Community Association. Written in part and compiled by Rick Wallace. Technical Direction by David Walker"

House History Ottawa - A project by M.S. Lowell and D. Lafranchise - "M.S. Lowell, (1961-) started doing house histories in 1989. He has conducted 23 various Ottawa House History projects in the past 15 years. Marc is originally from Toronto and is self-taught. Marc has also done work in geneaolgy. He is listed on the Library and Archives Canada Freelance Researchers list.
D. Lafranchise (1952-) is a retired Civil Servant from Ottawa who has a major interest in Ottawa History."

The Kitchissippi Museum - A blog about west Ottawa's little-known history, with stories, photos and information covering the fascinating history of the historic Kitchissippi neighbourhoods.

Lebreton Flats Remembered - "Reflections on the history of a vanished community. Our mission, rekindle memories of a lost legacy."

Lost Ottawa - "Lost Ottawa is a Facebook research community devoted to images of Ottawa and the Outaouais up to the year 2000. Anyone can join. Just "Like" the page."

Ottawa's Bygone Buildings - Through the years, Ottawa has seen many buildings come and go. Some were lost to fire, some demolished for the expansion of parkland, roads and other improvements while others were removed to make way for newer buildings.

This project includes an online map showing the outline footprint of buildings which existed in 1912 but no longer exist today. Each footprint contains information and photos of these buildings.

Ottawa Family Tree - "When Jean Cadieux, a locksmith, made his way from Luché, in the Loire Valley of France to Montréal, during 1653, the first of my ancestors set foot upon the North American continent. It was a wild ride .. literally! .. from then, as the fur trader Antoine Cadieux made his way across the rapids of the Ottawa River before settling down with a family in Quyon, QC. This blog pays tribute to these ancestors’ courage and daring under the rubric that every family’s story is worth telling and ought to be passed along! The purpose of this blog is to share across the internet information on the O’Connor, Doyle, Dolan, Killeen, Kelly, O’Callaghan, Cadieux, Frood, Wilson and McEwan families found in researching the family tree."

Ottawahh - A personal blog with many descriptions and historical photographs of Ottawa's past.

Ottawa Past and Present - "A few decades ago, Ottawa was drastically different: Sparks Street was thriving, people were actually living downtown and at LeBreton Flats and a train could bring you to the heart of the city. The narrow and institutionalized vision of bureaucrats, the rapid expansion of car use, and a generalized neglect of architectural heritage changed the urban fabric of the Capital. The Gréber Plan and the NCC transformed Ottawa for the worse. One building at a time. We promote intensification and discourage sprawl. We are not against tall buildings, but we have a lot to say about bad design. This website is not strictly about heritage preservation, but rather what goes down the drain when those older buildings are demolished and streets are denatured."

Ottawa Rewind - "Hello, welcome to Ottawa Rewind, a blog dedicated to stories that I think are pretty cool about Ottawa and the surrounding area. Pull up a chair, grab a drink and enjoy the ride as we rewind some time…"

Ottawa Start: History - "OttawaStart is an independent website that mixes community news and events with a directory of great local web sites — kind of like a big community newspaper. The original version of this site was launched in September 1998 by owner & editor Glen Gower when he was a student at Carleton University in the Journalism program. Back then the site consisted of a single page with links to a few dozen popular local websites with local news, weather, sports and other essential information. Here’s a version of the site from December 1998. OttawaStart has been evolving for more than a decade to reflect our growing city and the increasing reach of the internet in our daily lives."

Ottawa Vintage Photos by Ross Dunn - "Photographs of Ottawa that capture the way of life up to about 1970. Much of the city has changed over time with growth and loss of heritage and street life"

Sandy Hill Stories by François Bregha - Sandy Hill has a rich history that can still be seen in many of the mansions that grace the neighbourhood or in street names that recall former activities. 

The Margins of History - A personal ramble through the history of Ottawa.

Today in Ottawa’s History - "The purpose of this blog is to provide readers with a brief account of an interesting or important event that happened in Ottawa’s history on a given day of the year. Ultimately, my objective is to have an article for every day of the year. While I will try to cover the highlights of each event, the brevity of the articles precludes a lot of detail and analysis. If readers wish to explore a topic in more detail, the sources listed at the end of each story will provide a useful starting point for research."

Urbsite - A blog on a variety of Ottawa historical topics.

Vanished Ottawa - A blog on abandonned buildings, fading buildings and buildings long gone from Ottawa.

Vintage Ottawa - "Nostalgic look at Ottawa's past be it buildings, people, events, houses or more."

The Hon. Alexander Mackenzie was Canada’s second Prime Minister, serving from 1873-78. Mackenzie was Leader of the Opposition until 1880 and then continued to sit as a Liberal MP until April 17, 1892 when he died from a stroke after suffering a fall at the age of 70.

Alexander Mackenzie was a self-educated stonemason who rose from humble beginnings in Scotland to become Prime Minister. He fought passionately for equality and parliamentary democracy and for the elimination of privilege and political corruption. A key nation builder of Canada, known and loved for his utmost integrity and honesty, his is a compelling story of duty and honour.

This video was prepared to help celebrate Canada 150 and to raise awareness and appreciation of his life and times and his contributions to Canada.

(Video prepared initially for The Historical Society of Ottawa.)


Funeral of Sir Wilfrid Laurier - The view in front of the Notre Dame Cathedral Basilica in Ottawa on Sussex Drive on 22 February 1919, Library and Archives Canada IDC: 94473


1920 - Film sequence from a visit to Ottawa - The film shows a woman receiving a letter from woman friend in Halifax followed by this friend arriving at the train station in Ottawa and being taken on a tour of the city in a convertible car.


1938 - Ottawa: Canada's Capital, Library and Archives Canada


1939 - Royal Banners Over Ottawa - Visit to Ottawa by George VI and Queen Elizabeth


1940 - Odds and ends from old footage of Ottawa


1941 - Ottawa on the River - A film about Ottawa in 1941


1942 - Ottawa and the War of 1812 - Explains the military importance of the Rideau Canal.


1946 - Byward Market - When Ottawa's Byward Market was a real market.


1968 - Touring Ottawa - Amateur film of from Maitland Avenue along the Queensway to downtown, around Parliament, to Champlain point, along the Ottawa River, Dows Lake and many other places in town.