The Old Court House Museum is located in the historic shiretown of Guysborough, at the head of beautiful Chedabucto Bay. Housed in the former Guysborough District Court House, the museum is currently maintained by the Guysborough Historical Society.
The Guysborough District Court House was constructed in 1842-43 in the British Bulldog architecture style. It is one of the few surviving examples of 19th century court houses in the province. The building’s design and location were selected to reinforce its importance as a centre for justice. Visitors are able to observe some of the building’s unique features, including a projecting enclosed porch with a gable roof as well as a series of beautiful tracery windows.
During the building’s 171-year history, it served not only as a court house, but also as a town hall, a venue for political debates, a polling station, an enlistment centre for both World Wars, and even as an agricultural fair exhibition centre. Numerous artifacts representative of the building’s diverse past are on display throughout the museum. Many of these artifacts were kindly donated or loaned to the museum by residents of the Guysborough area.
Highlights of the museum include dioramas of the 17th century French forts on nearby Fort Point, as well as a fascinating collection of historical photographs and maps of the Guysborough area. The Museum also has an assortment of tools and handcrafts collected from the Acadian and Black settlements in the area. Together, these items tell the story of Guysborough County’s remarkable marine, agricultural and lumbering history.
Facilities / Services
Admission: Admission free, donations welcome.