In 2007 Heritage Park achieved Recognized Museum Status. We are one of several museums in the province to receive the Recognized Museum a designation from Alberta Museums Association. This designation was earned by participating in the Museum Affirmation Program. This was designed to strengthen the Associations accountability toward the public funds it distributes through grants and programming to the province’s museums.
Museum and Exhibits
Our museum site is a 6.6 acre area containing numerous historic buildings, a collection of large artifacts, and the Heritage Park Community Historical Resource Centre. The historic buildings date from about 1911 to the late 1940’s, providing visitors with a glimpse of Fort McMurray as it was in the first half of the last century.
The buildings are designed to provide visitors with an idea of how specific locations such as the first school room or a trapper's cabin might have looked. Other buildings contain more traditional museum displays on the first bush pilots, the fishing industry, trapping, the fur trade, the salt plants, logging, the railway, the telephone system, the ice harvest, and river transportation. Other exhibitions feature Magistrates, Alberta Provincial Police, Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the North West Mounted Police.
Significant features are the Hill House, former home of Walter and Gladys Hill, which contains eight display areas showcasing artifacts from 1934-1970 and the replica Clausen Cabin that depicts the history of forestry through the Huberdeau Collection and forestry artifacts. Coming soon is the addition of the Golosky House.
We have a large artifact collection that includes the Radium Scout, a grader, a drilling rig from the 1920's, a steam tractor, a Fairbanks Morse stationary diesel engine, a Krupp bucket wheel from Syncrude's pilot plant, and Fort McMurray’s first fire truck: Pumper 1. In 2008, we added the 1970s Thiebault ladder truck from the Olds Fire Department.
We also feature exhibits showcasing community groups and organizations as well as traveling exhibits.
Bob Duncan, the founding president of the Fort McMurray Historical Society, spearheaded the creation of Heritage Park in 1963. His goal was to ensure that the history of the Fort McMurray and surrounding region was recorded and preserved for future generations. In 1964, the land was donated to create the present 6.6 acre facility for Heritage Park.
Financial support for Heritage Park has come from many different areas over the years including private citizens, corporate donations, municipal and provincial funding and the Alberta Museums Association. Today's park is the culmination of over 40 years of hard work and dedication of our board of directors, staff and volunteers. All buildings and large artifacts in Heritage Park have been relocated here from other sites in Fort McMurray. The work to restore and maintain the buildings and large artifacts is ongoing.
Timeline CD - Discover the rich history of Fort McMurray and region
The Fort McMurray Historical Society invites you to Unlock Our History and journey back in time to our early beginnings. Learn about explorers, early pioneers, the fur trade, and the river transportation plus much more on our interactive timeline CD. Discover our rich history and how it shaped Fort McMurray to what it is today!
Through thousands of hours of meticulous research by our staff and volunteers, the Fort McMurray Historical Society has compiled a complete historical timeline of Fort McMurray and region dating back to the 1600s to 2000
The Timeline CD takes you through a journey to
the past with pictures and narration.
Our interactive CD features a sports
timeline and a section called "Did You Know"
which highlights facts and trivia about
the region and our people.
Unlock Our History CD
An interactive educational CD with puzzles and word scrambles for the Grades 1 and 2 for $9.95.