Housed in the oldest building in Canada specifically built as a museum, the Montreal Redpath Museum first opened its doors in 1882 displaying the collections of then McGill principal and renowned natural scientist Sir William Dawson. Praised for its design, the Redpath building roughly exemplifies the Greek Revival style popular in the mid 19th century.
Open to the public free of charge, the Redpath Museum has collected nearly three million objects running the gamut of the natural sciences, covering paleontology, geology, zoology, ethnology and mineralogy. Highlights in the permanent exhibit include:
- 150,000 fossils and fossil replicas including dinosaur bones
- 2,300 Greek and Roman coins
- 3 Egyptian mummies
- 16,000 mineral specimens
- one shrunken head
One select Fridays at 5 p.m. (except in summer months), the Redpath Museum invites a McGill scientist to "bust a science myth." Lectures are held in the Redpath Auditorium and are usually free of charge. Donations are encouraged. Past Freaky Fridays include Melting Glaciers, What Gives?, Flesh-Eating Parasites: Extreme Microorganisms in Your Face and The Creation Museum: 30 Million Dollars of Anti-Science and Mis-Education.
From theoretical physics to pediatrics, everyone is invited to learn more about science and its many facets. On one Thursday of every month at 6 p.m (except in summer months), the Redpath Museum hosts Cutting Edge. A lecture series inviting scientists from McGill as well as top scientists from across the globe to talk about their field of expertise, admission is free and the public is welcome to a wine and cheese after the lecture. Past lectures include Einstein and Time, Ozone Depletion and Climate Change, Alice and Bob's Strange Adventures in Quantumland and Predicting and Preventing Sudden Cardiac Death.
Enjoy watching a science documentary while passing through the museum. Usually screens Sunday afternoons free of charge. Screen time subject to charge without notice. Consult the schedule for details.
Family Events: Discovery Workshops
Every Sunday, from September through April of every year, the Redpath offers science-related hands-on activities for kids. There is a nominal fee in the $10 range per participating child but zero charge for parents. Reservations one week ahead of a scheduled activity must be made to guarantee a spot. Call (514) 398-4086 extension 4092 for reservations or more information. Past workshops involved a wide range of kid-approved themes such as sharks, volcanoes, and flowers.
9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday to Friday
11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday
1 p.m. to 5 p.m., July and August Sundays
Closed on public holidays, including an extended Christmas break.
Free. Donations are encouraged to keep the Redpath Museum free and accessible to everyone. Discovery workshops, some Freaky Fridays and special events may charge a nominal fee.