A notice to our supporters regarding COVID-19

Canada Post Building

Under Construction in 1902

A Bustling Waterfront

In the Early 1900s

Guysborough Historical Society

Founded in 1973, the Guysborough Historical Society is a non-profit, volunteer organization created to preserve the history of Guysborough County.

In 1976 the Society restored the old Court House in Guysborough to create a community museum to exhibit objects that help illustrate the story of Guysborough County and its people, and accommodate a visitor information centre for tourists to the area.  





Old Courthouse Museum &  Visitor Information Centre
Closed for 2020 Season

Clean it Right logoThe  Old Courthouse Museum and the Visitor Information Centre are now both closed for the 2020 season. This has been a most unusual summer. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we were unable to open the Museum Exhibit  Area to the public but  we were able to operate the Visitor Information Centre using COVID protocols for staff and visitors. We were trained and certified by TIANS as a “Clean it Right” facility.

Despite the physical closure, we can still be contacted with any questions you may have related to our historical and genealogical roles. During the time we are closed you can  contact us:

Our online store (https://www.guysboroughhistoricalsociety.ca/shop/) is still open.  We will continue to fill your book or clothing orders as usual.  Items from our store would make great Christmas/Holiday gifts.




Hours of Operation 2021 

2021 Hours
  • Old Courthouse Museum and Visitor Information Centre now closed for the 2020 Season
  • Hours for  the 2021 Season will be posted when finalized by the Executive of the GHS Board


During the Off-Season appointments can be arranged by sending an email to guysborough.historical@ns.sympatio.ca

The Historical Society Executive meets the 3rd Wednesday of each month at 7:00 PM (winter weather permitting)

Our Historic Walking Tour is open all year.

Genealogical Research Services

The Guysborough Historical Society offers genealogical research services. Research requests may be made by contacting the Old Court House Museum from June to the first of October.

Find more information about our research services click here.

Museum News

New Edition – Recollections of a Life in Guysborough 3rd edition

Recollections of a Life in Guysborough 3rd EditionA New Edition of Laurier C. Grant’s book titled “RECOLLECTIONS OF A LIFE IN GUYSBOROUGH”  is now available for purchase.  This new edition includes a new chapter, written by Laurier in 1966 and updated in 1982, detailing the history of the Guysborough Hospital.

Laurier began writing sometime in the late 1970’s in order to, in his own words, “…attempt to put in writing a condensed genealogy of my parents’ families as well as excerpts from my experiences during my long life in Nova Scotia…”. The book provides an entertaining and informative perspective both relating to his family and significant times in the history of Guysborough.



Interred Within The Pioneers of Guysborough

Interred Within documents the history of those in one of Nova Scotia’s oldest cemeteries. Researched by various authors over a period of four years, it tells the stories of 47 pioneers of Guysborough. Included are:

Rev. Peter De La Roche, the first Rector, who provided clerical services to all regardless of race, religion and class at a time when slavery was still legal and before Catholic emancipation.

Daniel Aikens, ordinary seaman, who served aboard HMS Temeraire at the Battle of Trafalgar, who’s ship turned the tide of battle.

. . . and 44 others whose biographies will appeal to historians, genealogists and those who just want a good read!


Erin’s Sons: Irish Arrivals in Atlantic Canada

The Guysborough Historical Society recently purchased Terrence M. Punch’s 4 volumes titled Erin’s Sons: Irish Arrivals in Atlantic Canada.  Volumes  I and II cover the years 1761 – 1853, Volume III encompasses 1751 – 1858, and Volume IV up to 1863.  These volumes were written using a variety of sources to identify as many Irish pioneers in Atlantic Provinces of Canada as possible and disclose where they came from in the Old Country.  These volumes are available in our research room during regular hours for those seeking to discover more about the Irish settlers who came to and through Atlantic Canada in those years.

Dr. Buckley’s Archive

In 2018, the museum acquired a digital copy of Dr. Buckley’s medical archive.
It is available for researchers in the museum.