Port-Royal National Historic Site Celebrates 75 Years since Reconstruction

News Release

Anniversary marks the beginning of Canada’s historic preservation movement


June 30, 2016                               Halifax, Nova Scotia                                               Parks Canada Agency

On July 4, 1941, the residents of Annapolis Royal and area gathered to celebrate the grand opening of the reconstructed Port-Royal Habitation. Now, 75 years later, Parks Canada will mark this significant milestone with a day-long celebration at Port-Royal National Historic Site on Sunday, July 3.

The reconstruction of the Port-Royal Habitation was the dream of Harriette Taber Richardson, a summer Port-Royal resident from Cambridge, Massachusetts. In 1928, she formed “The Associates of Port-Royal”, a group of New England citizens determined to raise money to help rebuild the site burned to the ground in 1613 by Captain Samuel Argall of Virginia. In 1941, Taber Richardson’s dream became a reality thanks to the contributions of The Historical Association of Annapolis Royal.

The reconstruction design was based on centuries-old sketches drawn by Samuel de Champlain during his time at the Habitation. On July 3, Parks Canada, Tourism Nova Scotia and Taste of Nova Scotia are carrying on Champlain’s legacy by inviting all in attendance to join the Order of Good Cheer: a distinction normally reserved for visitors to the province. For one day only, Nova Scotians are invited to join the gastronomical society which originated in Port-Royal, and to enjoy delicious, locally-made food and drink from Taste of Nova Scotia and Good Cheer Trail members.

The celebration begins at 10 a.m. and includes performances from the Annapolis Basin Community Band and Annapolis District Drama Group. Official ceremony begins at 1 p.m., followed by a group Order of Good Cheer pledge. 


“Our national historic sites reflect the rich and varied heritage of our nation and provide an opportunity for Canadians to learn more about our diverse history.  The reconstruction of the Habitation, now Port-Royal National Historic Site, was truly the culmination of a community effort to recreate this historic settlement. Parks Canada is pleased to celebrate this milestone in Canada’s preservation movement with the town of Annapolis Royal and Municipality of the County of Annapolis.”
Julie Tompa
Field Unit Superintendent, Mainland Nova, Parks Canada

“The Good Cheer Trail, Canada’s first winery, craft brewery, cidery and distillery trail, celebrates Nova Scotia’s rich culinary history, beginning with Champlain’s Order of Good Cheer. We are looking forward to reliving history by welcoming visitors with local food, drink and fun this weekend in Port-Royal.”
Christine White
Director of Communications and Events for Taste of Nova Scotia

Quick Facts

  • In the early 1600s, Port-Royal Habitation became one of the earliest European settlements on the continent. The settlement, along with those at Saint-Croix and Quebec, marked the beginnings of French settlement on the continent. The colonists formed enduring friendships with Mi’kmaq who had lived along the shores of Acadie for generations.
  • Samuel de Champlain settled in Port-Royal in 1605. In the winter of 1606-1607 he founded the Order of Good Cheer, or L’Ordre de Bon Temps, a dining society whose members took turns providing game for the table and maintaining an atmosphere of merriment.
  • In 1941, the Habitation was reconstructed thanks to the efforts of Harriette Taber Richardson, the “Associates of Port-Royal” and The Historical Association of Port-Royal. The grand opening of what is now known as Port-Royal National Historic Site took place on July 4, 1941, marking the beginning of Canada’s historic preservation movement.


Associated Links


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Sheila Aucoin
Partnering Engagement and Communications Officer
Mainland Nova Scotia Field Unit
Parks Canada
Tel.: 902-426-1553
Cell: 902-483-5184

Media Relations
Parks Canada Agency






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