If you miss touring the Joseph Brant Museum in Burlington, you won’t have to wait much longer!
The newly transformed museum will be re-opening to the public on Sunday, September 15.
A traditional Smudging Ceremony was led by Elder Garry Sault of the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation in August, where three levels of government, project funders and donors were given a preview of the transformed Joseph Brant Museum.
Celebrations will kick off from noon to 4 p.m. at 1240 North Shore Blvd and will feature tours, interactive exhibits, activities and an official ribbon cutting with Burlington Mayor Meed Ward.
The previous Joseph Brant Museum was a 1937 replica of the house Mohawk native Joseph Brant, Thayendanegea, built on a 1798 Crown land grant. A modern addition to the museum has been built into the grassy area under the previous museum.
Joseph Brant lived from 1742 to 1807. In 1798, the Mohawk and British captain was granted 3,450 acres at the head-of-the-lake (Burlington Bay) by King George the third.
“The Joseph Brant Museum transformation helps us to celebrate the important history of our First Nations’ people and culture, including Burlington founder Joseph Brant (Thayendanegea),” said Ward. “I look forward to celebrating the opening of the museum with residents and visitors and know they will enjoy it as our new major exhibition and heritage centre. It is a wonderful addition to Burlington’s vibrant waterfront.”
The expansion by contractor Aquicon Construction, adds more than 12,000 square feet to its previous size. This will help the museum to become a cultural destination and a place to host national exhibitions and the collection of artifacts.
“Cultural spaces like the Joseph Brant Museum play a fundamental role in bringing our communities together by enriching our understanding of our shared history,” said Pablo Rodriguez, the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Multiculturalism. “By supporting the renovation of cultural infrastructure, we are creating jobs, strengthening communities, and putting arts and culture within reach of all Canadians.”
The transformed museum has also been expanded to provide barrier-free space, including an elevator to the second-floor roof garden and original Joseph Brant home. The expansion includes more room for gallery displays, interactive programming, the storage of collections and community outreach.
More information about the transformation process includes:
- The total square footage of the expanded site is 17,000 square feet.
- The total project amount is approved at about $11 million, which includes a contingency fund and allows for cost increases due to a winter construction period. Funding includes:
- $2.9 million from the City of Burlington
- $4.5 million from the Government of Canada
- $1.5 million from the Province of Ontario
- $2.5 million from the Joseph Brant Museum Foundation
- The museum has 25,000 artifacts and receives about 18,000 visitors a year. The new space will meet all the display and security criteria to attract national travelling exhibits.
Will you be attending the museums re-opening?
Photo courtesy of the city of Burlington