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Major Funding Announcement


CanNor announces investment of more than $1.2 million to support development of community museum in Yellowknife

From: Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

News release

CanNor funding supports the expansion and improvements of the Yellowknife Historical Society’s Community Museum and Interpretive Centre

August 13, 2022 – Yellowknife, Northwest Territories – Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

Museums and heritage places are spaces where a region’s history and culture can be shared for the benefit of visitors and residents alike. They are strong regional economic contributors, driving new interest and improving the experience of tourists who want to learn about the rich and complex history of the Northwest Territories. 

Today, while in Yellowknife, the Honourable Daniel Vandal, Minister of Northern Affairs, Minister for PrairiesCan and Minister for CanNor, announced investments of over $1.2 million, delivered by CanNor and Canadian Heritage, to support the further development of the Yellowknife Historical Society’s Community Museum and Interpretive Centre as a historical and cultural tourist attraction. Additional funding for this project was provided by the Government of the Northwest Territories, the Yellowknife Historical Society and the City of Yellowknife.

Federal investment supports Community Museum and Interpretive Centre improvements in NWT

This investment supports updates and improvements to areas such as accessibility infrastructure, installation of commercial equipment, electrical and mechanical upgrades, and the development of museum fixtures and displays. Many of those activities are underway with some already completed. As a result, the Yellowknife Historical Society will be creating two new jobs and adding two new revenue streams. This project will also enable the organization to enhance its contributions to cultural programming in Yellowknife.

Through this investment, CanNor is continuing to ensure that the tourism sector in the Northwest Territories is supported to grow, succeed and contribute to the diversification of the local economy.


"Having shared places to learn about your heritage is important, not only for tourists and visitors, but also for local communities, and our government understands that. The Yellowknife Historical Society's project is proof that you can innovate, offer modern services to showcase Yellowknife, create jobs and contribute to the local and territorial economies, all the while promoting a sense of community." 

The Honourable Daniel Vandal, Minister of Northern Affairs, Minister for PrairiesCan and Minister for CanNor

"The preservation of heritage is so important in developing understanding and appreciation of a community's history. Our support in renovating the Yellowknife Historical Society's museum and interpretive centre will go far beyond improving the structure of the facility; it will also help protect the story of the unique community that is Yellowknife and ensure that it continues to be shared for years to come." 

The Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Canadian Heritage

"This expansion of the Yellowknife Historical Society's Community Museum and Interpretive Centre will provide opportunities for visitors to learn more about the fascinating history and culture of the territory and its people. This funding is helping local businesses benefit from key economic opportunities and create new jobs and revenue sources in the process, which benefit the greater community and help build a more robust economy in Yellowknife and across the territory."

Michael McLeod, Member of Parliament, Northwest Territories

"The Northwest Territories has strong ties – almost a century's worth - to the mining sector. The Community Museum and Interpretive Centre will celebrate this rich mining history; and work to preserve and share its legacy infrastructure and stories as a Spectacular tourism attraction for the Yellowknife region. The Government of the Northwest Territories is pleased to join the Government of Canada in supporting this project that will allow residents and visitors alike to learn about this important element of our past."

The Honourable Caroline Wawzonek, Minister of Finance, Minister of Industry, Tourism and Investment, including responsibility for the Business Development and Investment Corporation and Minister Responsible for the Status of Women

“Having a dedicated museum to showcase the social, industrial, and geologic history of Yellowknife, is important. This contribution will help bring the plans for a Yellowknife Historical Museum to fruition, giving residents and visitors a place to learn about and share this story. I look forward to visiting the centre when it opens.”

The Honourable R.J. Simpson, Minister of Education, Culture and Employment and Minister of Justice

"This project is a culmination of over twenty years of volunteer effort on the part of the Yellowknife Historical Society members, in particular Walt Humphries – past President, who first envisioned a community-based museum on this site. We are especially appreciative of the level of collaboration and communications between three levels of government (Federal, Territorial and Municipal) who have all supported this project and the ongoing value it will bring to this community. The Yellowknife Historical Museum will serve to illuminate the rich history of the area and we look forward to sharing these stories with residents and visitors alike." 

Helmut Epp, President, Yellowknife Historical Society

"The City of Yellowknife is proud to provide funding to the Yellowknife Historical Society's project that will increase the awareness of Yellowknife's history and add to the overall visitor experience. Not for profit organizations are important contributors to our economy and improve the overall quality of living in our capital city." 

Mayor Rebecca Alty, City of Yellowknife, NWT

Quick facts


Kyle Allen
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Northern Affairs, Minister for PrairiesCan and Minister for CanNor

Barbara Abramchuk
Communications Advisor, Northwest Territories