Remembrance in Canada's capital: Guide and lesson plans

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Remembrance in the Capital
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Explore commemorative sites in Ottawa and learn how our military history has contributed to the growth of Canada.

Visit a selection of Canada's national military commemorations during your trip to Ottawa. Or explore them virtually in your classroom. Teachers: Use the historical links and free lesson plans to enrich the learning experience!

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Military Commemorations in Canada's Capital

Elgin Street and Rideau Canal

1. The Response, the National War Memorial

The memorial is a tribute to Canadians who have served in times of war.

History: The National War Memorial (Veterans Affairs Canada)

Lesson Plan: National War Memorial (Canadian Heritage)

National War Memorial

2. Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

The unidentified Canadian soldier represents all Canadians who have died for their country, particularly the estimated 28,000 soldiers with no known graves.

History: The Unknown Soldier (Canadian War Museum)

Lesson Plan: See the National War Memorial lesson plan

Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

3. The Valiants Memorial

This collection of busts and statues commemorates 14 heroic men and women who represent critical moments in Canada's military history.

The Valiants Memorial

4. National Aboriginal Veterans Monument

The monument is a tribute to the many Aboriginal men and women who have served in the Canadian Armed Forces.

History: Aboriginal People in the Canadian Military (Veterans Affairs Canada)

Lesson Plan: National Aboriginal Veterans Monument (Canadian Heritage)

National Aboriginal Veterans Monument

5. Monument to Canadian Fallen (Korean War Monument)

This monument commemorates more than 30,000 Canadians who served in the Korean War from 1950 to 1953, and as peacekeepers in Korea until 1957.

History: The Korean War (Veterans Affairs Canada)

Lesson Plan: Remembering the Forgotten War (Veterans Affairs Canada)

Korean War Monument

6. South African War Memorial (Boer War)

Thirty thousand schoolchildren donated pennies to pay for this monument to Canadian volunteers who died in the South African War (1899–1902).

History: The South African War (Veterans Affairs Canada)

Lesson Plan: The South African War (Veterans Affairs Canada)

South African War Memorial

7. Northwest Rebellion (Sharpshooters Monument)

This monument from 1888 commemorates members of the Sharpshooters' Company of the Governor General's Foot Guards who died during the Northwest Rebellion (1885).

History: Louis Riel — Selected Resources (Parks Canada)

Lesson Plan: Who Was Louis Riel? (CBC)

Sharpshooters Monument

Sussex Drive

8. Reconciliation: The Peacekeeping Monument

The Peacekeeping Monument is the only commemoration of its kind in the world. It is dedicated to Canadian peacekeepers, and honours both the living and the dead.

History: The Faces of Peace (Veterans Affairs Canada)

Lesson Plan: The Future of UN Peacekeeping (CBC)

The Peacekeeping Monument

9. The Defence of Hong Kong Monument

A tribute to the 1,976 Canadians who helped defend the British Crown Colony of Hong Kong during the Second World War.

History: Canadians in Hong Kong (Veterans Affairs Canada)

The Defence of Hong Kong Monument

10. National Artillery Monument

The large marble wall commemorates gunners killed in service. The 25-pounder gun was used by the Royal Canadian Regiment of Artillery during the Second World War and in Korea.

History: The Canadian Armed Forces (National Defence and the Canadian Forces)

National Artillery Monument

11. Ottawa Memorial (Commonwealth Air Forces Memorial)

A tribute to approximately 800 air force members who died in the Second World War and who have either unknown or inaccessible graves.

History: Canada's Air Force in War and Peace (Canadian War Museum)

Commonwealth Air Forces Memorial

12. Mackenzie-Papineau Monument

This monument commemorates the Mackenzie-Papineau Battalion. This group of more than 1,500 Canadian volunteers fought against fascism in Spain during the 1930s.

Mackenzie-Papineau Monument

Wellington Street and the Ottawa River

13. Peace Tower and the Memorial Chamber

The Peace Tower commemorates the end of the First World War. The tower holds the Memorial Chamber and the Books of Remembrance containing the names of Canada's war dead.

History: The Memorial Chamber (Parliament of Canada)

Lesson Plan: The Peace Tower (Canadian Heritage)

The Peace Tower

14. The Canadian Phalanx

This monument is part of a collection of documentary art that commemorates Canada's participation in the First World War.

History: Canada's War Art (Canadian War Museum)

The Canadian Phalanx

15. Royal Canadian Navy Monument

This commemoration represents the important role of those who have served, currently serve and will serve in the Royal Canadian Navy.

History: Canada's Naval History (Canadian War Museum)

Lesson Plan: The Battle for the Atlantic (Canadian Geographic)

Royal Canadian Navy Monument

Other Canadian Military Educational Resources

Canadian Military History Gateway

Directory of websites and digital resources on Canada's military history (National Defence)

Canadian War Museum

Educational resources on topics like Canada and the First World War and Remembrance Day.

Commonwealth War Graves

Search for Canadian soldiers buried in Commonwealth war graves around the world.

The Memory Project (Historica-Dominion Institute)

Oral histories from Canadian veterans about the Second World War and the Korean War.

Veterans Affairs Canada

Teachers' resources include Remembrance Resources for Veterans' Week.

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