Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 in Halifax
The Pier 21 Canada Immigration Museum in Halifax, NS, is an independent private foundation and the only museum in Canada that exclusively celebrates the journeys and stories of those who have immigrated to this country.
The building was built in 1928 as a passenger terminal for immigrants to Canada. It served as a quarantine station, and later became one of the country's most important immigration processing centres. Toronto architect John Lyle designed Pier 21 to ensure abundant natural daylight and fresh air, and it remains one of the best-preserved buildings from that period.
Once at Pier 21 in Halifax, immigrants cleared customs and immigration procedures, then boarded trains or sailed on ships for their new homes. From 1935 until 1971, millions passed through its gates – including war brides, Holocaust survivors, refugees, survivors of Canada's forced foreign labour camps and the ‘Expo Five' from Czechoslovakia.
In 2000, Pier 21 was designated a National Historic Site because it had been used by more than 2 million immigrants seeking a better life in Canada. Today this site is honoured as a place of memory and reflection for all Canadians on the evolution of immigration to this country.
Today Pier 21 is Canada's most popular museum site outside the National Capital Region, with an annual visitation of more than 400,000 people. It has established itself as a world-class attraction that uniquely captures the immigrant experience in Canada – one story at a time.
The Immigration Museum is located at Pier 21 in Halifax, Nova Scotia. It is a short walk from the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic and across Bedford Row from the Maritime Art Gallery. Visitors can check out what buttons to push for the tours on Pier 21 to be conducted by volunteers.
The Halifax museum is open 363 days a year from 9:30 am to 5 pm, with the exception of December 25th. The museum is wheelchair accessible with elevators and ramps. Admission is free for all visitors.
Opening hours Canada Immigration Museum in Halifax are 9.30 am to 5 pm 363 days a year, except December 25th. Admission is free for all visitors.