Friday Two Cents: Ottawa Trip Part 4 – Statues/Memorials


If you go to Ottawa, you cannot help but notice that there are statues wherever you go, especially around the parliament buildings. Wherever I went, I saw different statues and memorials to different people, groups of people or events that touched Canada in one way or another. I could not visit all of them because Parliament Hill was going through a lot of reconstruction and restoration. Probably for Canada’s 150th birthday celebration in 2017. I am including a list of the ones I saw or visited.

  1. A new one that I saw was the War of 1812 Monument. The monument is entitled Triumph Through Diversity. It has all the key participants that defended Canada and defeated the American invasion.
    1. A Métis fighter firing a cannon
    2. A woman bandaging the arm of a Voltigeur
    3. A Royal Navy sailor pulling a rope
    4. A First Nations warrior pointing into the distance
    5. A Canadian militiaman raising his arm in triumph
    6. A member of the British Army’s Royal Newfoundland Regiment, firing a musket
  1. The Peacekeeping Monument. In 1988 the Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to the UN Peace keepers. This monument is in recognition of the Canadian armed forces contribution to the pursuit of peace as peacekeepers.  The monument shows three peacekeepers, two men and a woman, standing on two sharp knifelike edges of stone. It shows it cutting through the rubble and debris of war. It is to symbolize for the position of the peacekeepers at the end of a conflict, on the razors or swords edge, a very dangerous place to be. The writing on the monument is a quote from Lester B. Pearson: “We need action not only to end the fighting but to make the peace… My own government would be glad to recommend Canadian participation in such a United Nations force, a truly international peace and police force.” (Lester B. Pearson, November 2, 1956)
  1. Terry Fox Statue. If you read my post on the Canadian Museum of History I think very highly of Terry Fox. Just to give some facts, he ran a total of 143 days, through the Maritimes, Quebec and Ontario. However, bone cancer that had claimed part of his right leg returned. He was forced to stop his run near Thunder Bay, Ontario. Terry Fox died on June 28, 1981, one month before his 23rd birthday.

The Terry Fox Statue

  1. The Famous Five. A tribute to Nellie McClung, Irene Parlby, Emily Murphy, Louise McKinney and Henrietta Muir Edwards is also known as the Famous Five. These women won the “Persons” Case, a 1929 court ruling, which legally declared women as persons under the British North America Act and made them eligible for appointment to the Canadian Senate. This monument is entitled “Women are Persons!”

The Famous Five

  1. Queen Elizabeth II she is portrayed on her horse Centenial – the former RCMP horse officially presented to Her Majesty in 1977 – Queen Elizabeth II has reigned as Canada’s monarch since 1952.

Queen Elizabeth II

  1. Sir John A. Macdonald. One of the founding Fathers of Confederation, Sir John A. Macdonald was Canada’s first prime minister. During his terms Canada experienced rapid growth and prosperity. Prince Edward Island, Manitoba and British Columbia joined Confederation; as well the last spike of the Canadian Pacific Railway’s transcontinental railway line was driven into the ground.
  1. Sir Wilfred Laurer. He was Canada’s first Francophone Prime Minister from 1896 to 1911. During his office Canada experienced growth and prosperity, with Alberta and Saskatchewan joined Confederation, the last British troops were withdrawn from Canada and the Royal Canadian Navy was founded.

Sir Wilfred Laurer

  1. William Lyon Mackenzie King. During his administration he introduced unemployment insurance, family allowance, and Canadian citizenship. King led the country from the 1920s, 30s, and 40s, holding power as prime minister for almost 22 years. The longest in Canadian history.

William Lyon Mackenzie King

These statues and memorials remind us of the extraordinary people that helped to shape Canada in the magnificent country it is today. There is one more memorial I visited, but I think it deserves its own post.


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