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Built to Remember


The Canadian War Museum strives to educate, preserve and remember. Each exhibit is designed to show all sides of war so that we never forget its impact. On November 11, there is no better place to remember.

Every detail of the exhibits and even the architecture are designed to incite reflection. Galvnized steel, concrete, and bare concrete floors give a cold-as-steel militaristic feeling to the common spaces that draws you in and empowers visitors to reflect on the stories of war. Throughout the museum there are few windows but those strategically placed on the north peak spell out in Morse Code "Lest We Forget" in both official languages - the phrase at the heart of all Remembrance Day ceremonies.

Just inside the doors of the building's Memorial Hall hangs the headstone from the grave of Canada's Unknown Soldier. The single window in the room has been designed so that, at exactly 11:00 am on November 11 each year, the sunlight shines through and illuminates the headstone for those present for a quiet moment of contemplation. Anyone can participate and reflect by watching the live webcast of this very moving moment at on November 11th at 11:00 AM EST. It will also be broadcast throughout the museum as there is limited space in Memorial Hall. Admission and tours of the Canadian War Museum are free on Remembrance Day.

During the day, the War Museum also has a series of hands-on ways to remember. Visitors can contribute a personalized poppy to the wreath outside Memorial Hall; listen as local choirs sing songs in the spirit of remembrance; and write a message of comfort and appreciation to our current Canadian Forces members away from their families for the upcoming holiday season. For more information and schedule of events visit

In addition to events at the War Museum, the annual National Remembrance Day Ceremony honours and remembers our veterans who served Canada during war, armed conflict and in peace. The ceremony begins at 10:55 am at the National War Memorial on Elgin Street in downtown Ottawa and will be rebroadcast on screens at the Museum.