The Merrickville Blockhouse
The Blockhouse Musuem was originally a defensive building built by Col. By to protect the Rideau Canal from possible invasion. By the time it was completed in 1832, the threat of invasion had passed and the building was repurposed as the home for the lockmaster and his family. Sgt. Johnston and his wife and children lived in the Blockhouse from 1833 to 1855. The Blockhouse has had many other purposes in the intervening years, including a storage facility and a church. It was designated as a national historic site in 1939, but was largely abandoned until Transport Canada decided to demolish it in the early 1960s. The community of Merrickville raised funds and created the Merrickville and District Historical Society to renovate the Blockhouse in partnership with Parks Canada.
The Blockhouse Museum opened for the first time in 1967 and has opened every summer since. Its mandate is to preserve the heritage and history of Merrickville-Wolford and the surrounding districts, and provide access to the public to this heritage and to the building.
Planning Your Visit
The Blockhouse Museum is closed for the winter 2018-2019 season. The Blockhouse Museum reopens on Saturday, May 18, 2019.
Spring Hours: 12 PM to 4 PM Saturday and Sunday (from May 18, 2019 until mid-June)
Summer Hours: 10 AM to 6 PM 7 days a week (mid-June to September 2, 2019)
Fall Hours: 12 PM to 4 PM Saturday and Sunday (from September 7, 2019 to October 14, 2019)
Where are we?
The Blockhouse Museum is situated on the corner of Main Street and St. Lawrence Street in Merrickville, Ontario. Parking is available at Blockhouse Park, which is accessible from Main Street.
The Blockhouse Museum entrance and ground floor are accessible. Access to the second story is only available via a staircase. MDHS is committed to providing alternative access to the information and collections housed on the second story, including "virtual" tours using photographs.
Please note that there are no washroom facilities available in the Blockhouse Museum. Between the May long weekend and Thanksgiving weekend, visitors are welcome to use the Parks Canada facilities at the Merrickville Lockstation, located next to the turning basin (across the street and down the stairs).
During the Blockhouse Museum's summer season, tour groups are welcome during regular hours. To arrange guided tours, or to arrange tours outside of regular operating hours, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our exhibits are made up of items donated by community members, and reflect the evolution of Merrickville-Wolford.
Use the gallery below to explore our exhibits!