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Heritage Saskatchewan is a not-for-profit organization founded in 1981. Our Mission is to preserve, promote and enhance Government House as a public heritage site. With a membership of over 200, the Society welcomes new members and volunteers.
Government House and Government House Historical Society: A Chronology of Transitions
1891 Government House was the residence of the Lieutenant Governor of the Northwest Territories until 1905. From 1905 - 1945, Government House was the residence of the provincial Lieutenant Governor of Saskatchewan.
1945 No longer in use as the Lieutenant Governor's residence, there was an auction of furniture and other articles from the House.
1946 – 1957 The House became a Veterans Affairs convalescent home (federal government lease).
1958 – 1978 The House became a Center for Continuous Learning, Dept. of Education, and later a Vocational Center.
1969 First official meeting of the “Saskatchewan House Committee” to halt the possible demolition of this historic building and to develop specific plans for restoration of the deteriorating Government House.
1971 The Province declares Saskatchewan House an “historic site and protected area” but with no financial commitment at this time. ”Saskatchewan House Committee” was incorporated as the ”Society for the Preservation of Saskatchewan House” to lobby for the restoration of this historic site.
1976 An editorial by James Roe in The Leader-Post recounted the previous decade of efforts on the part of the Society, describing any guarantees for restoration of the House as being frustrated ”by a tangled tale of bureaucratic foot-dragging, buck-passing and intergovernmental misunderstandings.” Public interest was generated by this article and the government finally acted to begin restorations.
1978 – 1980 Renovations and restorations under the services of BLM Architects.
1980 Official opening of the now restored and renamed Government House in time for Saskatchewan's 75th anniversary. The government plan was to operate Government House as a Prairie History Museum.
1981 The “Society for the Preservation of Saskatchewan House” changed its name to “Government House Historical Society Incorporated” who then began lobbying for the offices of the Lieutenant Governor to be re-installed at Government House.
1984 After an absence of forty years, the Lieutenant Governor once again conducted business out of offices in Government House.
1980 - 1990 During this time, the fewer than one hundred members of the Society were kept busy with events to attract visitors to the House and with fund-raising activities to support the House and grounds.
1991 Centenary of the House. More than twenty special activities and fund raisers were sponsored by the Society during the Centennial. One of the projects that was started this year was the Victorian Teas, which have remained a popular attraction at Government House ever since. One weekend a month from March to December, the volunteers of the Government House Historical Society host a Victorian Tea Room which offers a high tea in an elegant old world atmosphere.
1993 The Society adopted the following mission statement: “The Government House Historical Society is constituted to improve and enhance the public appreciation and use of Government House as a museum.”
1994 The official opening of the Once Upon a Time Children's Gallery, which provides a hands-on educational experience for young children.
1995 In honour of the 50th anniversary of the end of World War ll, plans were made to develop a tulip garden, called the Netherlands Liberation Memorial Garden. It was rededicated in May, with donations of 5706 red tulip bulbs from the Netherlands Consulate and the Canadian Department of Defense.
1996 The first annual Antique Appraisal Event was held at Government House.
1999 At a five year strategic planning session, the Board of Directors adopted a new mission statement to “preserve, promote and enhance Government House as a public heritage site.”
2001 The Society produced an informational CD about Government House, participated in the filming of a seven-part series by Access Communications about Government House, and began the first of the Christmas Dickens Singers Concerts that have proved popular every year since.
2003 The first issue of the Society newsletter, the Portico, was mailed to its members, and is now published four times a year.
2004 The first Auction was held as part of the Annual Antique Appraisal weekend. It was now known as the AA&A Event. Funds raised by the Auction of donated antiques were for the Society to spend on its activities and on the House.
2005 Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth, officially opened the Queen Elizabeth II Wing at Government House, for which the Society raised $30,000 towards its completion. Coquette's, The Gift Shop at Government House, began operation and is a totally Society-run project. As well, the J. E. N. Wiebe Interpretative Centre opened in Government House itself.
2009 The Government House Historical Society developed a web page to aid in its promotion of Government House.
We are located at 4607 Dewdney Avenue, Regina, SK, S4T 1B7
Phone: (306) 787-5363 Fax: (306) 787-5714
Please feel free to navigate through our site and learn about our organization and our activities.
© 2014 Heritage Saskatchewan