Parks Canada

Parks Canada

December 20, 2011 06:00 ET

Government of Canada Supports the Preservation of the Old Burying Ground National Historic Site of Canada

Parks Canada announces contribution for improvements at site

HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA--(Marketwire - Dec. 20, 2011) - On behalf of the Honourable Peter Kent, Canada's Environment Minister and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, the Honourable Peter MacKay, Member of Parliament for Central Nova and Minister of National Defence, today announced that the Government of Canada will be investing in improvements at the Old Burying Ground National Historic Site of Canada in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

"Our government has taken a leadership role in the protection and promotion of Canada's invaluable and irreplaceable historical heritage such as the Old Burying Ground National Historic Site," said Minister MacKay. "This new funding will ensure the preservation of one of Halifax's most treasured national historic sites for future generations and help foster a healthy local economy and thriving tourism industry."

The Old Burying Ground contains more than 1,200 head and footstones, including those of many heroes of the war of 1812. It was designated a national historic site in 1991 for its unique concentration of Canadian gravestone art from the 18th and early 19th centuries and its substantial Welsford-Parker Monument commemorating the Crimean War. The Old Burying Ground was originally managed by St. Paul's Anglican Church, the oldest Anglican Church in Canada, and served the city of Halifax from 1749 until its closure in 1844.

Through Parks Canada's National Historic Sites Cost-Sharing Program, the Government of Canada will be contributing up to $21,500 to support the conservation of threatened individual gravestones and the stabilization of larger masonry assemblies found in tombs in the cemetery.

"One of our Government's major objectives is to inspire Canadians to develop strong and meaningful connections with Canada's national treasures," said Minister Kent. "Our national historic sites are vital to our history, our identity as Canadians, and our tourism industry. By investing in them and by building lasting relationships with the community groups that operate them, we ensure that they will continue to help support local economies and encourage more Canadians to explore and discover our national heritage."

"The Old Burying Ground is home to a remarkable collection of historically significant grave markers attracting more than 10,000 visitors annually," said Don Lordly, Director and Vice Chair of the Old Burying Ground Foundation. "The Parks Canada Cost-Sharing funding is a generous contribution towards the cost of completing Phase One of a $150,000 three phase conservation effort on the most at risk, age-old gravestones and tombs in the Old Burying Ground. It will help to ensure their protection and preservation for future generations of visitors, historians and trustees."

The Cost-Sharing Program reflects the Government of Canada's dedication to protect Canada's heritage through funding towards the conservation of our national historic sites. In this centennial year, Parks Canada is pleased to continue its efforts to ensure that Canada's historic and natural heritage is protected for the enjoyment, education and appreciation of all Canadians, today and in the future.

For additional information, please see the accompanying backgrounder at under Media Room.

Contact Information

  • Adam Sweet
    Press Secretary
    Office of the Minister of the Environment

    Media Relations
    Parks Canada