Haliburton Highlands Museum
Collection of Local History and Culture
Bayshore Acres Road, just off Hwy 118
A Little History – First Inhabitants
The area we now call Haliburton Highlands was inhabited by Algonquin tribes long before European contact in the 1600’s.
These tribes primarily based their livelihood on the area’s abundance of fish, wildlife, fruit and maple sap.
The Algonquin are actually a nomadic people, relocating their wigwam villages by birch bark canoe to favoured seasonal places.
They lived lightly off the land, making use of the numerous rivers and streams as their roads.
Protecting Highlands Heritage
The Haliburton Highlands Museum is located in Glebe Park, overlooking Head Lake and the Village of Haliburton.
Go to Google Maps for a bigger picture
Open year-round, the main gallery consists of history exhibits on the region’s native people and cultures, the logging era, the first railways and early tourism. Local artifacts enrich displays on children’s toys, printing and the role of general stores.
The museum also has an exceptional collection of over 100 bird specimens.
In summer, the museum opens a relocated village home, a rural farmstead with basic log home furnishings, a barn with period agricultural implements and a forge building.
The Haliburton Highlands Museum offers tourist and local residents a year-round glance into the past with their permanent displays as well as a blacksmith shop and the seasonally-operated Reid House and an authentic furnished log home.
Located on Bayshore Acres Road, off Hwy 118 just west of Haliburton village.
Open year round. Summer 10 am – 5 pm Tues through Sun, Spring and Fall 10am – 5 Tues through Sat, Winter 10 am – 5 pm Wed through Sat. Always check their website for changes in hours opened.
The museum is the best place to learn about the area you have chosen to visit, familiarize yourself with your new surroundings if you are moving here, provide you with the information you are looking for, great for a tourist to see how the area was built up.
The museum is situated in Glebe Park on the north shore of Head Lake overlooking Haliburton Village. It was started off by a local committee as a Canadian Centennial project to commemorate the early pioneers of the region. Originally housed in the Reid House, a historic village home, the collection quickly outgrew the confines of this little house. A considerably larger facility was built in Glebe Park in order to meet the museum’s growing requirements.
Reid House was picked up and moved to its new location and was refurbished as a typical village home reflecting everyday life at the turn of the century.
In subsequent years a log barn, house and small building housing our forge were added to the museum grounds in order to depict life in a more rustic & rural setting.
The main gallery facility houses numerous thematic exhibits relating to the first inhabitants of the region, the native peoples, who were followed by the first influx of lumbermen and settlers.
It seems difficult to believe today the area was promoted for its agricultural possibilities by the Canadian Land and Immigration Company who purchased ten townships in the surrounding area.
Unable to wrest a living from the poor soils the settlers turned to logging and trapping to supplement their meagre lot.
Their log buildings are open in the summer months only, Reid House is open from Victoria Day through Thanksgiving. Their Main Gallery which houses most of our exhibits, their growing collection and archival material is open all year.
Admission by Donation.
Haliburton Highlands Museum
Contact: Thomas Ballantine
Website: Haliburton Highlands Museum
Other Museums in the area to enjoy and collect a little history