Government of Canada commemorates the de Gannes-Cosby House, a rare surviving example of a pre-Deportation residence in Acadia

News release

August 19, 2023                   Annapolis Royal, Nova Scotia            Parks Canada

Today, Parks Canada and the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada commemorated the national historic significance of the de Gannes-Cosby House of Annapolis Royal, Nova Scotia, with a plaque unveiling ceremony at the property.

This house, built in 1708 for French officer Louis de Gannes de Falaise with funds provided by King Louis XIV, is a rare example of a pre-Deportation residence in Acadia. It is typical of the houses inhabited by the colonial officer class under both French and British rule. After 1727, it served as a residence for British officer Alexander Cosby, lieutenant-governor of the fort and town of Annapolis Royal.

This carefully restored house retains many original features including post and beam framing, sections of wattle and daub infill, massive floorboards, fine pine panelling and a fieldstone foundation. Its current owners, the How family, have spent years restoring the house and furnishing it with period pieces, and today the house’s importance to the community is widely recognized.

The Government of Canada, through Parks Canada and the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, recognizes nationally significant persons, places, and events as one way of helping Canadians connect with their past. By sharing these stories with Canadians, we hope to foster understanding and awareness of Canada’s rich and complex heritage. The commemoration process is largely driven by public nominations. To date, more than 2,200 designations have been made. To nominate a person, place or historic event in your community, please visit the Parks Canada website for more information:  



“The de Gannes-Cosby House withstood a tumultuous time in the history of the Maritimes and is exemplary of all of the early years of settlement that have shaped the Canada we know today. The plaque unveiled today commemorates the site’s rich past and its important place in Canadian history.”

The Honourable Steven Guilbeault
Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada

Quick facts

  • Founded within Mi'kma'ki, the traditional territory of the Mi'kmaq, Annapolis Royal was once known as Port- Royal and was the capital of the French colony of Acadia between 1605 and 1710. During this time, Port-Royal was repeatedly besieged and captured as the French and British empires fought for supremacy in North America.

  • Created in 1919, the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada advises the Minister of Environment and Climate Change regarding the national historic significance of places, persons, and events that have marked Canada’s history. Together with Parks Canada, the Board ensures that subjects of national historic significance are recognized under Parks Canada’s National Program of Historical Commemoration and these important stories are shared with Canadians.  

  • Parks Canada is committed to working with Canadians in our efforts to tell broader, more inclusive stories in the places that it manages. In support of this goal, the Framework for History and Commemoration outlines a comprehensive, and engaging approach to sharing Canada’s history through diverse perspectives, including shedding light on tragic and difficult periods of Canada’s past.

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Media Relations
Parks Canada 

Alicia Brett
Communications Officer 
Mainland Nova Scotia Field Unit, Parks Canada 

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