Haunted Canadian Museum of Nature

Haunted Canadian Museum of Nature
The Victoria Memorial Museum Building known as “the castle” in Ottawa was built in 1905, and has housed the Canadian Museum of Nature (first known as the National Museum of Natural Sciences) since 1912.

It cannot be determined when museum employees began hearing weird noises in the hallways of the huge structure, especially at night, but reports have been going on for quite a while.

Doors open and close with no help, elevators move without a human hand pushing the buttons, electrical equipment and appliances unplug themselves, shadows dance, bells toll for no reason, and there are “cold spots,” in the building…especially on the fourth floor, which is apparently empty and closed off to museum visitors. Visitors of the ethereal kind, don’t care if a section is closed or not, of course.

One restless spirit has been in residence at least since the mid-1980s, “when an exhibit opened that was devoted to folklore and superstition” on the fourth floor displaying items such as a shattered mirror, open caskets, and religious artifacts. He is a friendly ghost called “Freddie” by the staff.

Some activity has been reported on the third floor as well including odd noises and touches from icy hands. There is an unsubstantiated report that a workman was killed on this floor during the early days of construction.

There are stories about the ceremonial clothing of a Cree warrior on display on the third floor in 1978 having something to do with the paranormal activity.

Of course, as the building is a museum, it is difficult to determine if the structure itself is haunted; or, if one of the artifacts brought into the museum has an entity or force attached to it. There are rumors of mummies and ancient Native American remains stored in the basement of the building.

A legend about the architect who built the building, David Ewart, indicates that he committed suicide by jumping off the roof of the museum. My research shows this isn’t true. Mr. Ewart actually died in a local hospital as an old man in 1921.


Regarding your article on the "haunted" Canadian Museum of Nature in Ottawa, Canada, please note that the fourth floor is not closed to visitors. On the west side of the fourth floor we have our Animalium and Bird Galleries. On the east side, we have our special Creatures of Light: Nature's Bioluminescence exhibition.

I haven't heard any rumours about strange things happening in recent years. It is jokingly suggested that the "ghost" moved out during our renovations from 2004-2010.


Colombo, John Robert. Mysteries of Ontario. Ontario: Hounslow Press, 1999.







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