Lecture Series

Our popular Heritage Ottawa Lecture Series runs from September to June every year, and features a wide range of interesting speakers and topics pertaining to Ottawa's history and heritage.

Unless otherwise noted, lectures are free and are held at the Main Branch of the Ottawa Public Library, located at 120 Metcalfe Street at the corner of Laurier Avenue. Elevators are available and the room is wheelchair accessible.

Lectures begin at 7:00pm, last approximately one hour and are followed by an informal gathering. 

There is no need to pre-register. We look forward to welcoming you at our next Heritage Ottawa event!

Thanks to our Lecture Series sponsor Andrex Holdings.

 

Upcoming Lectures

  • What's in a Name?
    Wednesday, June 21, 2017 - 19:00 to 20:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 5M2
    Canada

    This lecture will present the early histories of Bytown, Rochesterville and Nepean with an exposé woven from the Rochester, Cole, Baillie and McDougall families whose collective...

Past Lectures

  • Heritage Ottawa Lecture: Prime Ministers' Row Project
    Prime Ministers' Row Project
    Wednesday, April 19, 2017 - 19:00 to 20:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 5M2
    Canada

    The extraordinary built heritage of Ottawa’s Laurier Avenue East, historically home to seven Fathers of Confederation and eight Prime Ministers, will be transformed into Canada’s first...

  • Vimy One-Hundred Years Later: A New Education Centre
    Wednesday, March 15, 2017 - 19:00 to 20:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 5M2
    Canada

    The Canadian National Vimy Memorial, centred on the evocative design of Walter Allward's beautiful monument and the surrounding landscape, evokes tremendous emotion and provides...

  • A Landmark Transformed: The New Global Centre for Pluralism
    Wednesday, February 15, 2017 - 19:00 to 20:30
    The Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat
    199 Sussex Drive ( use Boteler Street entrance )
    Ottawa, ON K1N 1K6
    Canada

     

     

    HERITAGE OTTAWA 2017 PHILLIPS MEMORIAL LECTURE

    UPDATE: This lecture is available on YouTube courtesy of our partners at the Global Centre for Pluralism.

    Order...

  • Heritage Ottawa at Fifty
    Wednesday, January 18, 2017 - 19:00 to 21:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 5M2
    Canada

    Join us for a lively review of the past and future of local heritage as we gear up to celebrate a milestone anniversary year!

    Councillor and Chair of the Built...

  • THE GRÉBER PLAN: 65 YEARS LATER
    Tuesday, December 13, 2016 - 19:00 to 20:00
    Dominion-Chalmers United Church
    355 Cooper Street ( use entrance on Lisgar Street )
    Ottawa, ON K2P 0G8
    Canada

    This talk presents the fascinating story of Jacques Gréber’s vision and plan for Canada’s capital, with a look at what worked and what we might do differently today.

    From his 1950's lens,...

  • THE DIEFENBUNKER: COLD WAR FORTRESS
    Wednesday, November 16, 2016 - 19:00 to 20:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 5M2
    Canada

    A marvel of Canadian engineering built under duress during the unknown threats of the Cold War era, the massive structure now known as "The Diefenbunker" demanded the development of a number of...

  • Emerging Scholars: Three Talks
    Tuesday, October 25, 2016 - 19:00 to 20:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 5M2
    Canada

    Join us at 7pm for three informative talks by recent graduates. Each talk will be 15 to 20 minutes in duration and the audience will have an opportunity to pose questions to the speakers.

    ...
  • HOW HERITAGE WORKS IN OTTAWA: THE FIFTH ANNUAL HERITAGE OTTAWA FORUM
    Saturday, October 15, 2016 - 12:00 to 16:30
    allsaints
    317 Chapel Street ( at Laurier Avenue East, main entrance of former Church )
    Ottawa, ON K1N 7Z2
    Canada
    The Event is Full and Pre-Registration is Now Closed.

    Join us for this informative afternoon of presentations and practical information focusing on How Heritage Works in Ottawa. Hear and share...

  • From Triplex to Tower: Building Ottawa's Apartments 1945-1975
    Wednesday, September 21, 2016 - 19:00 to 20:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 5M2
    Canada

    Between the post-World War II housing crisis and the dawn of the condo era, Ottawa witnessed successive waves of apartment building construction - good, bad, and indifferent.

    This...

  • National Arts Centre: The Rejuvenation in its Urban and Historic Context
    Wednesday, June 15, 2016 - 19:00 to 20:00
    National Arts Centre
    53 Elgin Street
    ( Lecture takes place in the SALON, access via Main Lobby )
    Ottawa, ON K1P 5W1
    Canada

    The National Arts Centre was the federal government’s centennial project to commemorate Canada’s 1967 celebration of Confederation. The project fulfilled a long-held national dream to create a...

  • History of Ottawa's Brickyards
    Wednesday, April 20, 2016 - 19:00 to 20:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 5M2
    Canada

    Brick was an uncommon building material in the Ottawa area until the building boom that crested in the early 1870s.

    Brickworks for the Ottawa market mostly developed along the banks of the...

  • Bletchley Park's Outpost in Sandy Hill
    Wednesday, March 16, 2016 - 19:00 to 20:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 5M2
    Canada

    During World War ll, an Examination Unit was installed in a Victorian mansion in Sandy Hill to carry out top secret code breaking activities. This lecture will examine how the Unit came to be set...

  • 2016 Phillips Memorial Lecture
    Wednesday, February 24, 2016 - 19:00 to 21:00
    The Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat
    199 Sussex Drive ( use Boteler Street entrance )
    Ottawa, ON K1N 1K6
    Canada
    Saving Heritage: Preserving History in the Developing World

    Please note that PRE-REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED for this lecture.

    Harnessing the culture and history of a region can be a powerful...

  • MacDonald Gardens: A Study in Community Heritage
    Wednesday, January 13, 2016 - 19:00 to 20:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 5M2
    Canada

    BEFORE AND AFTER FREDERICK TODD

    The park at the centre of Macdonald Gardens commemorates the graveyards of four congregations from 1845 to 1873.

    This lecture will reveal how...

  • Landscape Architecture in Canada 1870 - 1920
    Wednesday, December 9, 2015 - 19:00 to 20:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 5M2
    Canada
    The Creation of Canada's Iconic Public Open Spaces

    This well illustrated talk explores the outstanding work carried out in the creation of Canada's public open spaces and institutions from about...

  • CRAFT, HERITAGE AND DIGITAL TOOLS
    Wednesday, November 18, 2015 - 19:00 to 20:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 5M2
    Canada

    Digital technologies play an increasingly significant role in large, complex heritage documentation projects such as the one under way for the Parliament Buildings National Historic Site of Canada...

  • REINVENTING BUILDING 94 AT THE CENTRAL EXPERIMENTAL FARM
    Wednesday, October 14, 2015 - 19:00 to 20:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 5M2
    Canada
    The New Canadian Agriculture and Food Museum

    The masterful re-purposing of Building 94, a "Recognized" Federal Heritage Building on the Central Experimental Farm National Historic Site, was...

  • Behind Closed Cells: The Architecture of Canada's Jails and Prisons
    Saturday, October 3, 2015 - 19:00 to 20:00
    Ottawa Jail Hostel Courtyard
    75 Nicholas Street
    Ottawa, ON K1N 7B9
    Canada
    SPECIAL PUB LECTURE

    For over a century, the intimidating architecture of Canadian prisons inspired sentences to be carried out in solitude and silence.

    Set within Ottawa's own historic jail...

  • OTTAWA'S RURAL AND SUBURBAN HERITAGE
    Saturday, September 26, 2015 - 09:30 to 17:00
    St. John's Anglican Church, South March
    325 Sandhill Road
    Kanata, ON K2K 1X7
    Canada
    The Annual Phillips Memorial Heritage Forum Saturday, September 26, 2015 9:30 am - 5:00 pm

    Followed by an optional bus tour of Beaverbrook to 6:30 pm 

    PLEASE NOTE: Registration for this...

  • A MONUMENTAL ISSUE: The Long Term Vision and Plan for Canada's Capital
    Wednesday, September 16, 2015 - 19:00 to 20:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 5M2
    Canada

    Planning for Ottawa has been underway since its choice as Canada’s capital in 1858. Focus of this planning has always been on the Parliamentary and Judicial Precincts located along Wellington...

  • City Water and Country Air: Rockcliffe Park at 150
    Wednesday, June 17, 2015 - 19:30
    Rockcliffe Park Recreation Centre, Library Building
    380 Springfield Road
    Ottawa, ON K1M 0K7
    Canada

    Rockcliffe Park has long been a Village within a city setting. Its early history is closely linked to Frederick Law Olmsted, whose remarkable planning philosophy was imported to Canada by...

  • 20th Century Built Heritage Symposium / NCC Capital Urbanism Lab
    Thursday, May 7, 2015 - 18:00
    National Capital Commission (NCC)
    NCC Headquarters, Capital Urbanism Lab
    40 Elgin Street, 5th Floor
    Ottawa, ON K1P 1C7
    Canada

    In celebration of the 10th Anniversary of the Conserving the Modern in Canada Conference held at Trent University in 2005, the National Capital Commission's Capital Urbanism Lab is pleased to...

  • Ottawa’s Frontier Modernism
    Wednesday, April 15, 2015 - 19:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 1E7
    Canada

    Beginning as a settlement built on the forest frontier, Ottawa has largely been shaped by Modern ideas over the past two centuries. Since Confederation, it has had a complicated relationship with...

  • Taking Care of Business: The Mausoleum Promoter and the Cemetery
    Wednesday, March 18, 2015 - 19:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 1E7
    Canada

    Beechwood Cemetery was established in Ottawa in 1873. Now almost one hundred and fifty years old, it is recognized for its naturalistic, pastoral and picturesque landscape. It features a number of...

  • The Way Forward for Heritage in the Capital: Beginning A New Conversation
    Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 18:00 to 20:00
    NCC Headquarters
    Capital Urbanism Lab
    40 Elgin Street, 5th Floor
    Ottawa, ON K1P 1C7
    Canada

    The National Capital Commission (NCC) and Heritage Ottawa are proud to present a panel discussion about emerging ideas in Canadian and international heritage conservation, and how these ideas...

  • National Capital Commission Parkway System “All Roads Lead to Parliament Hill”
    Wednesday, January 21, 2015 - 19:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 5M2
    Canada

    Ottawa is home to some of the loveliest shoreline driveways in the world with the Rideau Canal Driveway, the first beautification project of the capital. This lecture will present the history of...

  • Art or Selfie? Canadian Portraits High and Low
    Wednesday, December 10, 2014 - 19:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON
    Canada

    Dr. Lilly Koltun will lead an irreverant promenade through the history of portraiture in Canada, leaving us to wonder at the unexpected wealth we've inherited in that art as well as the...

  • The East Block: An Exemplary Example of High Victorian Gothic
    Thursday, November 20, 2014 - 19:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON
    Canada

    The East Block was designed in 1859 as one of the first Gothic Revival office buildings and it was an early example of the style’s first phase of development. The talk will focus upon how the East...

  • Emerging Scholars and Ottawa Architecture / 1 of 2
    Tuesday, October 14, 2014 - 19:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON K1P 1E7
    Canada

    This month’s lecture features two talks on local monuments. Meredith Stewart offers a new perspective on the heritage value of the Champagne and Plant Baths “The Public Baths in Ottawa: A Heritage...

  • Emerging Scholars and Ottawa Architecture / 2 of 2
    Tuesday, October 14, 2014 - 19:00
    Auditorium, Ottawa Public Library
    120 Metcalfe Street
    Ottawa, ON
    Canada

    This month’s lecture features two talks on local monuments. Meredith Stewart offers a new perspective on the heritage value of the Champagne and Plant Baths “The Public Baths in Ottawa: A Heritage...

  • A.W.N. Pugin and the Revolution in Residential Architecture
    A.W.N. Pugin and the Revolution in Residential Architecture
    Friday, September 26, 2014 - 19:00
    Saint Alban’s Church
    454 King Edward Avenue (enter on Daly Ave)
    Ottawa, ON K1N 7M8
    Canada

    A.W.N. Pugin, best known as a designer of Gothic churches and the decoration of the Palace of Westminster, perhaps had his greatest impact designing residences that were completely different from...

  • The Origins and Significance of Residential Gothic Architecture in Ottawa
    The Origins and Significance of Residential Gothic Architecture in Ottawa
    Friday, September 26, 2014 - 09:00 to Saturday, September 27, 2014 - 17:00
    Carleton University, River Building
    Ottawa, ON
    Canada

    The competition for design of the Parliament Buildings in the late 1850s drew to Ottawa several English architects who introduced popular Gothic domestic forms that helped transform the housing...