Museum of Civilization to become history

The Canadian Museum of Civilization in Gatineau, Que., will be re-branded into a museum on purely Canadian history, the federal government will announce Tuesday.

Museum to focus on Canadian history since Confederation, eliminate international exhibits

Museum re-branding

11 years ago
Duration 2:21
The Museum of Civilization is going to see a facelift. Sandra Abma gets reaction.

The Canadian Museum of Civilization, the country's largest museum, will be completely re-branded in anticipation of 2017 when the country celebrates 150 years since Confederation.

The museum is expected to be re-named the Canadian Museum of History, CBC News has learned, as part of a broader strategy that focuses on Canadian social and political history instead of civilizations from around the world.

That means current international exhibits on Haiti and the Mayan civilization would no longer be displayed at the museum, which sits in Gatineau, Que., across the Ottawa River from Parliament Hill.

Those exhibits will be moved to other museums in Canada.

The museum moved from Ottawa in 1989 to a new building in Gatineau designed by architect Douglas Cardinal.

CBC News has learned museum staff, the board of directors and Cardinal have all supported the changes.

An announcement will be made Tuesday by Heritage Minister James Moore and other federal officials, which will include details on funding.

Changes are 'wasteful spending,' Liberal MP says

Liberal MP Marc Garneau questioned the motivation behind pending changes after Question Period Monday.

"Tell me what we are achieving by doing that, other than providing the Conservative government with another moment so they can make an event and ... do some press conferences and spend some money," Garneau said.

"They’re going to have to spend money on new stationery and a whole bunch of other things at a time when Canadians don’t want to see wasteful spending."

Heritage Minister James Moore will reveal the details Tuesday about a re-branding of the Canadian Museum of Civilization. (Chris Wattie/Reuters)

Moore did not reveal any details about the museum's re-branding plans when pushed during Question Period by NDP MP Andrew Cash.

The new branding is expected to include displays about the country’s major milestones since Confederation.

The Museum of Civilization, previously called The National Museum of Man, also features a collection of aboriginal artifacts from across Canada, which are expected to remain in the museum after the changes.