The Niagara-on-the-Lake Museum research room has opened, for now every Tuesday by appointment, and all sleuths, detectives, genealogists, and the curious public are once again invited back to explore the secrets of boxes, drawers, and files of historical archives.
The NOTL Museum’s collection database site at www.notlmuseum.ca is the first place to start. After an initial exploration, researchers must book an appointment with the museum. Requests are received, and a detailed inventory of relevant information on a particular subject is drawn up by museum staff. Researchers are then able to determine exactly what archival material they would like to physically examine.
The museum is home to more than 50,000 items, out of which approximately 41,000 fall into the photographic, paper and print categories. And as this museum houses one of the oldest and most significant collections of life in Upper Canada for the past 10,000 years, the job of clue-hunting is not for the faint of heart. Diaries, war claims, oral histories, military and court records, properties, families, names, and early settlement records, all make up the extensive collection, and make researching even the most obscure article a fascinating adventure.
All researchers are asked to phone ahead to make a Tuesday appointment, and to provide initial areas of interest. Research fees are $15 per visit for non-members, and free to members. For more information check out the NOTL Museum website at www.notlmuseum.ca/research, or send an email to: contact@nhsm. ca.