FAQ

For history related FAQs, please scroll down.

Visiting the Museums during the Covid Pandemic FAQs

as of July 21, 2020, please check back regularly for updates.

When can I visit the Niagara Falls History Museum?

Starting July 21, the Museum is open Tuesdays – Saturdays 10:00 am – 4:00 pm.  We anticipate this will expand as we continue through the provincial phases and as long as it is safe to do so.

What about Battle Ground Hotel Museum & Willoughby Historical Museum?

Unfortunately, we will not be opening Willoughby or the Battle Ground in 2020.  We will not be conducting our regular tours of the Lundy’s Lane National Historic Site for the time being, but hope to expand to this service if possible.

What do I need to know if I want to attend?

We anticipate that your visit will be mostly the same as in the past.   We will be asking you some additional questions before entering, to ensure visitors are healthy and to provide us details for contact tracing.  When you enter the Museum lobby, you should be able to easily identify either the line up or our lobby staff who will ask you some questions and provide you with some details about your visit. 

What are you doing with the information you are collecting for contact tracing

We will not be adding these details to any mailing lists. We will be retaining digital copies and only access them if there is an outbreak related to the site or a visitor.  We will then be providing these details to Public Health.  We will ensure that we are keeping to all privacy laws with this data collection

How will you restrict the numbers of people in the museum/galleries?

We have staff around the facility that will monitor visitor flow around the galleries.  Should the galleries reach capacity, we will limit the number of people in the building and start a que out the back of the building (parking lot entrance).

Do you check the visitors’ state of health before they are allowed to enter?

When arriving at the Museum, we will be asking people to state that they and members of their group have no medical issues.

What will a gallery experience be like?

Very similar to a visit to our museum in the past.  Unfortunately the main difference is that our interactives have been removed/closed for the time being.  We will open some interactives when we feel that we can suitably clean them regularly and as public health officials provide us direction on current status in the Region.

Have you put in visible markings?

Yes, we have. Where this was required we have clearly marked the routes around the site. Also, we marked the spaces for ques near the entrances. 

Are there separate entrances and exits?

Currently there is no change to our entrances and exits. At the back of the Museum (parking lot side) we have asked that people enter the accessible double doors on the right and exit to the double doors that go into the courtyard.  If you can, please exit through the courtyard.

Who can I contact in case I have questions or suggestions?

We answer frequently asked questions on our website. If you cannot find the answer you are looking for, please send an e-mail to [email protected] Or phone us on 905-358-5082. The reception desk in the Museum lobby doubles as an information desk for all your questions and suggestions.

What have you done to change the galleries?

We have removed our interactives from use, however, we have added some QR code stations to further enhance your experience while on site.  These are short videos created by our team to allow you to go deeper into the Niagara Falls story.

Is the gift shop open?

Yes, we ask that you sanitize before handling any items and please do not handle any items unnecessarily.

What do we do when we arrive?

Line up if necessary; follow directions from our Visitor Services team.  If we are at capacity, you may be asked to wait to enter.  We will be there to let you know before you enter.  We are requesting that you use santitizer when you enter to ensure that we all remain safe.  We are collecting some details from you for contact tracing purposes.

Must I wear a face mask and/or gloves during my visit, or is it advisable to do so?

Wearing personal protection equipment (PPE) is not mandatory. You are allowed to make use of your own means of protection to safeguard your personal safety. However, these are not available or for sale in our Museum.

Payment

We accept cash, debit and credit at the Museum.  We would prefer you use credit or debit. Our payment systems allow for tap purchases.

Research Room & Research Inquiries

Currently our research room is closed to the public.  If you have inquiries, we ask that you contact the museum ([email protected]) with your inquiry.  We may be seeing delays in responses due to increased demands.

Do families/households/bubbles/clusters have to stay together as groups?

Whatever you call the group you arrived with, we would appreciate it if you would all stay together.

What about toilets

We have added additional cleaning of washrooms to our schedule of duties.  As well, we will regularly disinfect all touch points in addition to the additional cleanings.

What can I do when visitors do not stick to the rules?

We have appointed a sufficient number of staff who see to it that visitors comply with the protocol. They will actively check compliance. Therefore you should at all times report your observations to a staff member. They will see to it that the protocol is strictly adhered to. Visitors that do not comply with the guidelines will be requested to leave the museums.

Are there fixed routes through the Museum?

We have created a route that allows the visitor to explore all galleries without crossing paths with other guests.  Our Community Gallery (second floor) is more open flowing, we ask that guests respect the space of others and remain at least 2m apart in this area.

What if I have accessibility needs?

If you are using the accessible doors and elevator, please work with our team to ensure that you and other visitors have a safe and enjoyable experience.  There will be some changes to the visitor flow, however, visitors will not miss anything and we will do our best to ensure that safe travelling in the galleries is maintained by all.

What about programming and Thursday Nights?

 

We miss our Thursday night programming as much as you do.  For the foreseeable future, we anticipate that we will have to do most of our programming in a virtual way.  Please follow us on social media or sign up for our enewsletter to stay on top of our wonderful offerings and get an understanding of our community with our NOT @ the Museum Thursdays offerings.

 

---------------------now, back to the history stuff-----------------------

Q: How old is the old section of the Niagara Falls History Museum?

A: The stone building that now houses the Niagara Falls History Museum is the former Stamford Township Hall. It was built in 1874 by renowned local architect John Latshaw to house the departmental offices and council chambers of the former Township of Stamford. When the Township was amalgamated into the City of Niagara Falls in 1963, the building was used for various departments of the greater city, and was handed over to the Lundy’s Lane Historical Museum in 1970.

 

Q: Who won the War of 1812?

A: As with many questions of History there is no one right answer; you have to decide for yourself! Visit the R.D. Gale Family War of 1812 Gallery and consider which side, if any, you believe won the War of 1812.  Or take a walk in Lundy's Lane National Historic Site.

 

Q: Who won the Battle of Lundy’s Lane?

A: This question is answered by definitions and semantics as opposed to a single complete answer. Tactically it was a victory for the United States as they did manage to take the heights of Lundy’s Lane from the British, Canadian and Native allies. The U.S. army did well in this battle as they managed to flank the cannon, capture the heights and the cannons and make the British “advance to the rear”. Strategically, however, it was a British victory as the deciding factor of a victory is land-held at this time. The U.S. remaining on the field, tired, thirsty, hot, running low on ammunition, afraid of being surrounded and afraid of being cut off from their supplies decided to “advance to the rear” themselves just before the final wave of British infantry attacked; leaving the top of the hill to be retaken at close to two o’clock in the morning. More than 1600 casualties, among them 300 deaths, had occurred, during this, the bloodiest battle in Canada during the War of 1812.

 

Q: Where are all the artefacts that were on display before the renovation?

A: The artefacts that have been on display as snap-shots from daily life have mostly been re-housed and are placed in storage so that they may rest after being on display. The new artefacts that are on display will be rotated through as they too will need to rest. The role of a museum is to present information but also conserve, protect and keep artefacts for future generations; unfortunately displaying the artefacts, especially for long periods of time, are detrimental to those roles and requirements. Due to these, there has been a general change in the gallery style of museums from the former cabinets of curiosities formula, to a newer gallery type based on interpretation.A majority of our collection can be found online here.

 

Q: How close are you to other attractions and particularly the Niagara Falls themselves?

A: We are a fifteen minute walk to and from the casino and the Falls, which is about a five minute drive. It is just over 2 kilometres from the Falls to the Museum. Check it out here.

 

Q: Where may we park when visiting the Niagara Falls History Museum?

A: There is a spacious parking lot located behind the Niagara Falls History Museum; additionally there is a fully accessible entrance adjacent to this parking lot with a handicapped parking space.  Once parked, you are within a short walk to the Lundy's Lane Battlefield and the Battle Ground Hotel Museum.

 

Q: We’re feeling hungry and wanting to eat – are there places around you where we can eat?

A: There are many wonderful restaurants that can cater to a wide variety of tastes within a 5 minute walk of the Niagara Falls History Museum.

 

Q: Where are the Mummies?

A: The mummies for which you search are from the former Niagara Falls Museum, which was the oldest Museum in Canada, having been established in 1827 by Thomas Barnett. After several renovations and relocations, the Niagara Falls Museum was sold and relocated to a private collector in Toronto in 1999. We have acquired some artefacts from the former Niagara Falls Museum and they can be seen in our online database. The Niagara Falls History Museum, formerly the Lundy’s Lane Historical Museum, is a part of the City of Niagara Falls Museums and specializes in the human history of Niagara Falls including the development of the area, War of 1812, industry, geography, daredevils, tourism and the presentation of such in accordance with Federal and International standards.

 

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