What is Fort William Historical Park?

Fort William Historical Park is a provincially-funded living history attraction operated by the Ontario Ministry of Tourism. Through its historical interpretive program, the Fort depicts the fur trade activities of the North West Company at Fort William, inland headquarters and site of the Company's annual Rendezvous from 1803-1821. Each summer, staff portray Scottish partners, French Canadian voyageurs, artisans and farm labourers and Ojibwa and Metis aboriginals who worked at the Fort in the early 1800s.

Large crowd dancing in the Main Square of FortThe interaction of these people, their lifestyles, social status and activities, comprise the Fort's daily historical program. Visitors experience daily dramas, demonstrations, historical interpretation, tours and special themed festivals, many of which are based on historical documentation.  There are 42 re-constructed buildings on the sprawling 25-acre site, making Fort William one of the largest living history attractions in North America. Among its numerous and varied components, the Fort features a working farm, an active artisan's area, Native encampment and wharf. Select festivals and programs offered throughout autumn and winter. Special overnight programs and facilities are available for groups.

Fort William Historical Park (formerly known as Old Fort William) has been open to the public since 1973, attracting over 3.5 million people. The living history program, combined with catering, festivals and other partnership initiatives, combine to attract more than 100,000 visitors annually. The Fort employs full-time personnel for interpretive, maintenance, marketing and clerical duties as well as additional seasonal contract and summer staff.