Preserving a National Historic Site
The restoration of Craigdarroch Castle to its original splendour is more than 30 years in the making and it is an on-going process. It has involved countless hours from countless dedicated people who believe that preserving this beautiful monument to Canadian history is important and so worthwhile.
Conserving Craigdarroch is not an easy task. Historic photographs of the building and the surrounding landscape offer invaluable insight into how the Castle and its grounds used to look.
Returning Craigdarroch’s interiors to the Dunsmuir era (1890-1908) is especially difficult. Only one interior photograph from that period has survived. This lone photograph and a 1909 auction catalogue of Dunsmuir household possessions is our primary source of information to guide the conservation project.
The conservation and presentation work we do is funded through admission revenue and gift shop sales, and through donations from individual supporters and our members.
If you know someone that might have pictures of Craigdarroch Castle, we want to hear from you! Please tell us if you have any leads, and we will happily follow-up.
The Castle now houses many important objects from Craigdarroch and other Dunsmuir houses. If you know of any Dunsmuir furniture, paintings, glassware, dishes, or other domestic material, we can help to identify what you have try to determine which Dunsmuir house it came from.
We also collect historic letters and documents related to the Dunsmuirs and their businesses.
As a registered charitable organization, The Castle Society can issue income tax receipts for gifts of objects and documents. In certain instances, the Castle may be able to purchase Dunsmuir belongings for its museum collection.
BE A PART OF OUR HISTORY
Some of the most significant contributions towards the restoration and understanding of Craigdarroch have been provided by people like you.
- a 1909 photograph of a young child with the castle in the background
- a selection of bathroom tiles “too nice to see thrown away”
- the handwritten notations in the margins of a surveyor’s notebook as he passed by the gates on Fort Street
Even the smallest and seemingly most insignificant detail can answer a world of questions. Do you have a distant relative who was a carpenter or stonemason in the late 1800s? Did an ancestor of yours build a house in the newly created Craigdarroch subdivision of 1910?
If you think you have, or think you may have, information that could help us in our research please contact us today!
MEET THE DUNSMUIRS
Robert and Joan Dunsmuir had two sons, eight daughters and plenty of exploits. The Castle weaves a fascinating tale of this intriguing family – their achievements, their relationships and even their quirks.Learn More
ABOUT THE CASTLE
Built by coal baron Robert Dunsmuir during the reign of Queen Victoria and now a National Historic Site, Craigdarroch Castle has been meticulously restored, giving visitors a glimpse of privileged life in the 1890s.Learn More
PLAN YOUR VISIT
We are open daily from 10am – 4:30pm, with extended hours from June 15th to September 6th (9am – 7pm). (Please note that we are closed December 25th, 26th and January 1st)Learn More