University of Leicester
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Research and development at the fortress of Louisbourg National Historic Site, 1961-1981: A Canadian model for heritage preservation, interpretation and public history.

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posted on 2015-11-19, 09:09 authored by Terrence D. MacLean
The thesis outlines both the history and the historiography of the fortress and town of Louisbourg during and since the eighteenth-century, and explains the basis for its designation as a Canadian National Historic site in 1928. Emphasis has been placed on the process of research and development after the 1961 decision by the Cabinet of the Government of Canada to reconstruct a significant segment of the original fortress and town as a historical monument, outdoor museum and tourist attraction. Historical and museological research has been conducted with a view to placing the Louisbourg project into the broader context of historic site preservation and commemoration in Canada and then explaining its presentation to the public. Research, reconstruction and interpretation methodologies and their outcomes have been studied within an interdisciplinary perspective and the research philosophy and its applications have been described and analyzed in detail to document the process of research and development. The Louisbourg project has also been critically examined within the framework of policies and objectives set by Parks Canada and in terms of its contribution to the Canadian heritage field in general. With the aid of comparisons to other outdoor museums and historic sites in North America and Europe, the lessons of the Louisbourg reconstruction project as a public history model have been analyzed and highlighted.


Date of award


Author affiliation

Museum Studies

Awarding institution

University of Leicester

Qualification level

  • Doctoral

Qualification name

  • PhD



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