North Lanark
Regional Museum
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Please drop by for a visit to check out our new exhibits and activities!
We now have a colouring station for the kids!
See Home page for museum hours.

Cross & Poppies
JOY & SORROW: 1945 (Exhibit and Speaker Series)

The North Lanark Regional Museum in Appleton is once again hosting a talk and military display to honour those who served and fell in the World Wars.

The museum will host a presentation on Sunday Nov. 8th starting at 2:00PM by area researcher Rob More on the casualties from Beckwith and Lanark Townships from World War 1.

The event will also serve as the official opening to our annual military display. The exhibit for this year is entitled “JOY & SORROW: 1945” and marks the 70th anniversary of the end of World War 2.   

Following VE-Day and VJ-Day the end of the war meant a gradual return to normal life for the residents of Mississippi Mills, honouring the returning veterans, and remembering those who never returned.     It took quite some time before all veterans returned home, and hardships such as rationing continued for much of the year, despite peace being reached.

The display focuses on local items from 1945 and is open to the public from 10AM to 4PM Monday to Friday throughout November and December or by appointment for other times.

In addition, the North Lanark Historical Society has set up a window display in downtown Almonte at the Hub, asking the public to “Take Time to Remember”.

The museum is located at 647 River Road in Appleton. For more information, contact the museum at 613-257-8503 or visit their website at

Pioneer's Log Cabin
Pioneer's Log Cabin

An authentic pioneer log cabin located right behind the museum, visitors will find a variety of pioneer tools and household items throughout the cabin. These range from farm tools to baby cradles to wheat threshers — all in their original setting.

This engaging setup brings the artefacts alive and allows visitors to be transported to another time, and a completely different way of life. From the small things like using a straight razor to having to churn your own butter, life was difficult and rewarding for the hard-working settlers.

Friendly museum staff are happy to explain what each artefact was used for, and their importance to the lives of the pioneers. The cabin is open every summer from June until the end of August, we’d love to see you there!

Remembering The Almonte Train Accident
Remembering Almonte Train Accident

We are also commemorating a local tragedy with the exhibit "Remembering the Almonte Train Accident."

On Sunday December 27, 1942 tragedy struck Lanark County when a troop train rear ended a passenger train at the Almonte Train Station killing 39 people and injuring many dozen more.


Toys and Games of Mississippi Mills

Toy Exhibit Poster Toys and Games of Mississippi Mills features a vast array of toys, from the familiar favourites of yesteryear to the long forgotten toys from the turn of the century. The exhibit includes many toys and games from well- known local figures and families, who have many stories to tell from a childhood long since vanished. Also contributing to the exhibit are Bruce and Krista Toshack, owners of Toyshack Toys, and Randy MacDonald, an avid Tin Toy collector from Smiths Falls.

Many toys displayed in the exhibit are remarkable in their workmanship and functions. The toys donated by locals tell stories, and sometimes show how toys can bring children together to form lifelong friendships. Others show the contrast between today’s toys and those that have come before, revealing stark differences in regards to child safety. Come down to the North Lanark Regional Museum any day of the week and learn more about this fascinating collection.

              Toy Train Station
    Tin Train Station toy courtesy of toy collector Randy MacDonald of Smiths Falls.

WWII:    Remembering Our Local Heros
WWII Poster

An exhibit honouring the local men and women who served overseas and on the home front during WWII.
The exhibit includes local photographs, objects and uniforms.

Do you know a local person who served during WWII?
The museum is looking to interview WWII veterans or their families to record this amazing time in history. The museum is also interested in local military artifacts, documents and photographs.

Pioneering in Ramsay
Pioneering in Ramsay

This year we are celebrating our pioneering history with the exhibit "Pioneering in Ramsay" which documents some of the tools, techniques and living conditions of the early settlers.

In 2011 we had an earlier exhibit: "Salute to Ramsay". Information about that exhibit is at the bottom of this page.

Tea Time in Ramsay
Tea time poster & cups

Our newest exhibit “Tea Time in Ramsay” is now on display at the Mississippi Mills Municipal Office (3131 Old Perth Road, Almonte).

Please drop by and check out the history of tea in Ramsay Township!

The exhibit will be on display at the Municipal Office
March 13, 2013 until April 8, 2013.

On April 9th, 2013 the exhibit will be installed at the Mississippi Mills Almonte Branch Library.

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           The History of the 42nd Lanark and Renfrew Scottish Regiment

              Open weekends in November 1-4 pm, or by appointment.

'Fibers of Canadian History'
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“Fibers of Canadian History”, is a celebration of the longstanding tradition of textile arts in our area.

With particular focus on the Victorian era and early settlement, the exhibit is a self-guided journey through the diverse textile art methods that have made up our past. As families from Victorian Europe made their way to the New World, their textile arts were brought along with them. The roots of Canadian textile production were founded upon the traditions of these first settlers.

Exhibit displays feature quilt-making, embroidery, beadwork, knitting, crochet, dressmaking and more. Throughout the exhibit the viewer can be made aware of the tremendous importance of handmade creations that flourished in a time before industrial production. The exhibit also includes a display on the flappers of the 1920s; it features the signature flapper dress and bag. This display signifies the turn to mass production after the Industrial Revolution, when intricate beadwork and materials became more easily accessible.

Along with textile pieces, the exhibit includes such equipment and accessories as wool-winders from the now demolished Appleton Woollen Mill, sewing patters, a tailoring guide, sewing needles and more. Come out and experience the textile work of our area’s past.

A special thanks goes out to those who loaned artifacts to the museum for this exhibit.

Click here for a printable pdf copy of our Fibers of Canadian History poster

Sharing in the Diamond Jubilee  is an exhibit celebrating the life and reign of Queen Elizabeth II, in honour of her sixtieth year on the throne!

Queen Elizabeth II was born on April 21 1926, the daughter of the Duke and Duchess of York. Unexpectedly, she became first in line to the throne when her Uncle King Edward VIII abdicated making her father King in 1936. In 1947, Elizabeth married Philip Mountbatten, an exiled Greek royal, who had to renounce Greek title and convert to Anglicanism in order to marry the Princess. In 1952, with the passing of her father, Elizabeth ascended to the throne as Queen Elizabeth the Second.

As Canada’s Queen, Elizabeth has made several visits to Canada and played a role in the development of Canada over the past sixty years. She signed the Proclamation of the National Flag of Canada in 1965 and the Constitution Act in 1982.

In addition to the life and reign of Elizabeth, the exhibit highlights various Royal Weddings and a section celebrating Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee of 1897.

A special thanks to all the community members and community groups who loaned the museum artefacts for the display.

Please come visit the museum to see the photographs, memorabilia, publications and artefacts on display!

The North Lanark Region has had a strong military connection over the years. Many of the early settlers were part of the Lanark, Perth, Richmond military settlements from 1817-1822. We have records on many of these families. Local militias were formed to assist with events such as the Fenian Raids in the 1860s, and the museum has some articles associated with this time.

During World War I many local young men from the area enlisted to fight for our country and paid the supreme sacrifice. We have copies of the attestation papers for over 500 men from Almonte, Ramsay, and Pakenham who fought in the war. We also have photographs and artifacts connected with many of those men who died and are commemorated on the local war memorials.

We have uniforms and artifacts from local soldiers, sailors and airmen from World War II and the post war period. To pay tribute to the fallen men of the area, the museum hosts a military exhibit and talk each year close to Remembrance Day.

A special thanks to the Almonte Branch 240 Royal Canadian Legion for their assistance with many of our military artifacts

Salute to Ramsay
In 2011, the North Lanark Regional Museum celebrated the 175th anniversary of Ramsay Township. The following was prepared for the corresponding exhibit which was displayed in the summer of 2011.

On August 6th, 2011, the North Lanark Regional Museum, opened the exhibit titled “SALUTE TO RAMSAY”, which looks at the early history of Ramsay Township. Ramsay was named for George Ramsay, Earl of Dalhousie, who was Governor General of Canada in 1819, and the township was first surveyed by Reuben Sherwood in 1820. The first settlers were mostly families sponsored by the Lanark Societies of Scotland, arriving here in 1821, including men skilled in the textile trade, and veterans of the Napoleonic Wars. A second wave of Irish immigrants arrived in the region in 1823, under the direction of Peter Robinson. Many of the family names of Scottish and Irish settlers are still familiar in the area. Within a few years, these settlers were thriving and had established several small communities in the Township that would become Almonte, Appleton, Blakeney, and Clayton.

image description The oldest church built by the Scots still survives, the “Auld Kirk” located on the 8th Line. On January 4, 1836, the first official meeting for Ramsay Township took place in the schoolhouse at Leckie’s Corners, now near the Auld Kirk. John Gemmill, John Dunlop, and James Wilson were elected as the first Commissioners of the new township government. The commissioners were elected annually until 1850, when it changed to Reeves and Councillors, the system that continued through Ramsay’s history. Ramsay was amalgamated in the 1990s to form part of the Town of Mississippi Mills.

This year marks the 175th Anniversary of Ramsay Township as a political entity, and the museum has had displays and presentations throughout the year on the Ramsay Communities. This exhibit shows several different aspects of Ramsay - its early history and settlement, a look at some of the founding families, early buildings and homes, churches, schools, politics and early politicians, businesses and recreation. Some of Ramsay’s most famous “sons” are also featured including sculptor and educator Robert Tait McKenzie, the inventor of Basketball, Dr. James Naismith, and the founder of the large dairy and chocolate company, William Neilson.