Address5 Henry St. Brockville, ON K6V 6M4Telephone
Brockville Museum

Public Programs

The Brockville Museum offers a variety of programs geared to an adult audience throughout the year.  These include workshops, lectures and seminars on a range of topics.

On Demand Virtual Content

Visit our Digital Museum Site for on demand virtual program content, including recordings, activities, videos, and more.

Go To Digital Museum Site

Annual Winter Lecture Series: Tuesdays at 10am in February 2022

The Annual Winter Lecture Series returns February 2022. Get Tickets Now

Lectures will take place virtually each Tuesday morning in February at 10am. Tickets are available now through the Brockville Arts Centre Box Office (online or by phone).  Tickets for the whole series are just $20. 1 ticket provides live access to all four lectures, as well as to recordings of the presentation at the close of the series. Individual lecture tickets will not be available. All proceeds support Museum programming and will help ensure the continuation of this popular event in future years.

Note: Tickets must be purchased at least 24 hours in advance so we can ensure we can get the link to you. Ticket holders will be emailed a link for the lecture on the Monday before each lecture. Please make sure you have provided a valid email at time of booking, and be sure to double check your spam folder. If you have not received an email before 9am on the Tuesday of the lecture, please email the museum.

For more information, please contact Peggy by email or at 613-342-4397 ext 6225.

February 1:

125 years of Fear and Fascination with the Automobile

More than a century ago, fear and fascination gripped horse owners with the introduction of mass-produced automobiles, and today modern Canadians grapple over the idea of autonomous vehicles ruling the roads. Gates will explore our complicated history with the automobile and its technological evolution in Canada using examples from the Canadian Automotive Museum's collection.

Alexander Gates

Alexander Gates has held the position of Executive Director and Curator of the Canadian Automotive Museum in Oshawa, Ontario since 2014. He previously served as the Executive Director of the North Berrien Historical Museum in Coloma, Michigan. He holds a B.A. in international relations from Drake University and a Master's of Museum Studies from the University of Toronto.

February 8:

Discovering Ethel Mulvany and her Starving Prisoners of War Cookbook

While working on a research fellowship at the Canadian War Museum in Ottawa I came across the name of Ethel Mulvany, a Canadian woman who had helped organize the creation of three Red Cross quilts while she was a prisoner of war in Singapore.  The quilts, works of art as well as secret communication devises, were interesting, but when I discovered that Mulvany had written a Starving Prisoners of War Cookbook, I was hooked. This lecture will summarize Mulvany’s story and describe the trials and delights of tracking it down from London to Singapore and on to Manitoulin Island.

Suzanne Evans

Ottawa writer and historian Suzanne Evans is captivated by stories of women, war, food, survival, and what we make of it all. She holds a PhD in Religious Studies from the University of Ottawa. Her writing has appeared in academic and literary journals, newspapers, magazines and books. Her most recent project, The Taste of Longing offers the first full biography of Canadian “force of nature” Ethel Mulvany who, while starving, organized imaginary feasts at the infamous Changi Jail, Singapore during the Second World War. The Taste of Longing has won the Forward Indies Gold Medal for biography (2020), the Ottawa Book Award for Non-Fiction (2021), Taste Canada Gold Medal for culinary narrative (2021) and has been optioned for film.

February 15:

Transgenic Goats and Taxidermied Bison: the Unnatural Lives and Afterlives of Museum Animals

This talk will trace the checkered history of museum animals by telling stories about individual animals. First we will discuss the spider goats that were once held in Canada’s Agriculture and Food Museum, and ask why they ended up at the Pittsburgh’s Center for Postnatural History.  Why did they make people so very uncomfortable?  Then we will turn to the massive bison who fill the diorama at the Canadian Museum of Nature. Who shot them? Why? And why is this story not told to the visiting children at the Museum?  What can we make of the wistful display of a taxidermied passenger pigeon in the same museum, or those lumbering dinosaurs? Finally we turn to Jumbo the elephant, who was famously killed by a train in St. Thomas, Ontario, and ask why pieces of Jumbo were sent across North America.  What did scientists, athletes and elephant lovers see in these relics?  We will dip into scholarship in the growing international field of animal studies and animal history to think about what these Canadian stories tell us about our relations with other animals, and, of course, ourselves.

Joanna Dean

Joanna Dean is an Associate Professor at Carleton University. She teaches environmental history, animal history, 19th-20th c. women’s and gender history.

Dean is an environmental historian working on the history of our relations with the more-than-human world of plants and animals. She was the co-editor of Animal Metropolis: Histories of Human Animal Relations in Urban Canada (2017).

February 22: 

Art Matters in Canada-Brazil Relations (1940s-50s)

It is a little-known fact that the first cultural agreement that Canada signed was with Brazil in 1944. The two countries’ rapprochement launched a flurry of activity that centred mostly around Montreal,  connecting the city to Rio de Janeiro amid the turbulence of war and its aftermath. Why Brazil? And what could songs and paintings achieve that traditional diplomacy could not?

This talk examines two neglected histories: that of Canada-Brazil relations and that of culture’s role in Canadians’ pursuit of an international identity. By tracing the origins of our country’s cultural diplomacy to South America, it calls attention to the ambiguous yet important roles that impromptu ambassadors (musicians, but also painters and writers) can play in the making of international and intercultural affairs.

Dr. Eric Fillion

Eric Fillion is Buchanan postdoctoral fellow and term adjunct in the Queen’s University department of history. His research explores the social and symbolic importance of music, within countercultures and in Canadian international relations. His ongoing work on cultural diplomacy and Canadian-Brazilian relations builds on the experience he has acquired as a musician. It also informs his current postdoctoral research on the postwar Canadian cultural public sphere: his two main projects examine the political art of the internationalist left and the music festival phenomenon. An affiliate of the North American Cultural Diplomacy Initiative (NACDI), he is the founder of the Tenzier archival record label and the author of JAZZ LIBRE et la révolution québécoise. He is currently finalizing his next book, titled Distant Stage: Quebec, Brazil, and the Making of Canada’s Cultural Diplomacy, for McGill-Queen’s University Press.

Talk & Tea: Second Thursday of the month at 2pm

Explore Brockville's fascinating social and industrial history with the museum’s Interpretation & Public Program Coordinator on the second Thursday of the month at 2pm, featuring a different topic each month. Talks last about 45 minutes. Participants are encouraged to share their own stories and ask questions. 

  • Watch recordings from our 2020 virtual Talk & Tea program:  Past Recordings 

Talk & Tea is returning to an in-person format in 2022 (having been offered virtually since September 2020). However, due to the rapidly evolving COVID situation, we have decided to delay the return of Talk & Tea at least until March 2022. Please stay tuned for details.

2022 Dates & Topics (subject to change):

  • March 10- From Horse to Motor: Brockville’s Automotive History
  • April 14 - Brockville Churches
  • May 12 - Get Well Soon: Hospitals in Brockville
  • June 9 - Boat Building in Brockville
  • July 14- The Gilded Age of the 1000 Islands: 1000 Island Tourism
  • August 11 - Made in Brockville
  • September 8- Developing Parkedale
  • October 13 - The Brockville Art Centre
  • November 10- 3 Brockville Soldiers: Stories from the Great War
  • December 8 - 200 Years of Christmas in Brockville

Adult Programs:

The Brockville Museum offers a range of off-site adult talks, tours, and mini-muse exhibit kits which we can bring to you!  We can also customize any programs to meet your specific needs.  Please contact us to discuss options.  Click here to see what we are offering in 2021-2022!

"Stories from the Stones" Virtual Cemetery Tour

In Fall 2020 & 2021 we filmed a virtual cemetery tour featuring the stories from seven stones in the Old Brockville Cemeteries.

Click on the button to see all episodes Stories from the Stones Prior Episodes

Caring for your Family Treasures Workshop Series: COMING SPRING 2022   

Hands-on, educational workshops for adults interesting in preserving their heirlooms for future generations! Stay tuned for details.

Virtual Exhibits: Check out our virtual exhibits online, anytime

Visit our "Digital Museum" here for a variety of virtual content including virtual tours, exhibit talks, do it yourself activities, and behind-the-scenes videos.