Current Exhibitions

On-going in the First Gallery

First Gallery Natural History

Natural History and First Nations

Featured in our First Gallery is the ever popular kids zone, an interactive room featuring all you need to know on pre-European Dundas. The gallery features a climbing wall shaped into the Dundas Peak with a mural looking down into the town. Kids can go wild touching and exploring our habitat drawers and discovering some of the the creatures they share the valley with!



Across the room the gallery features a scaled cross section of a First First Gallery LonghouseNations Longhouse, a dwelling that the Neutrals, the first people in the valley, might have lived in. Visitors can sit and read about how the Neutrals lived, or explore the many ways our cultures were similar, and how they differed. On display in the gallery is also a portion of the Museum’s First Nations collection, including pottery from the Late Iroquoian Period (900-1650 A.D.) and projectile points from the Late Paleo-Indian Period (8,000 B.C.)


Feature Gallery

Growing Up in Dundas: A History of Childhood

October 19, 2018 – January 5, 2018

The experience of childhood, and even the concept of childhood itself, has changed dramatically through history. Yet the memory of our brief time spent growing up
is something we all share. From hikes to the Dundas Peak, to playing at the Driving Park, Dundas has always been a wonderful place to spend one’s youth.
Growing Up in Dundas will explore what childhood has been like in the Valley City for the past two hundred years. From the settler children who worked with their parents to clear the wilderness, to the kids of the fifties who dreamt of the toys and bicycles in the window of Jack N. Pinder’s hobby store, the memories of generations of Dundasians will be on display.

The exhibit will touch on every aspect of child life, with a look at the nursery, medicine, schooldays, fun and games, and even children at work. A vast number of artifacts from our vault will be brought out on display, including boys and girls period clothing, a school truancy book from the late 19th century, a scrapbook of paper dolls, a Victorian rocking horse owned by Sir William Osler, an antique doll house, an early cradle, as well as dolls, trains, and toys galore!

Share your stories of growing up in Dundas to be included in this feature exhibition! 




The Dundas Museum and Archives gratefully acknowledges the City of Hamilton City Enrichment Fund for its support of our Exhibition Program.



In the Education Centre Gallery

Cootes Retrospective by James Gummerson
October 2 – November 1

A description by the artist:  I have always been drawn to nature so when I moved to Hamilton years ago,  naturally I was drawn to Cootes Paradise. Since then I have spent much time throughout Cootes and region, researching, hiking, drawing and painting.

To me Cootes is a place in constant struggle of rejuvenation. Its old weathered trees, and thick bush seem to me to be trying to find its place. It’s almost as if its parts haven’t quite figured out how to work with each other let alone the urban environment surrounding it. We know for certain that Cootes past in the last hundred years has been uncertain and its had to replenish itself through years of filling, dredging and industrial development. Thanks to places like the RBG, its had a chance to survive.

This body of work focuses on the elements of Cootes that is not obviously apparent unless one looks more closely. I try to show that struggle of rejuvenation and beauty and its relationship within its urban environment.  Many of the works incorporate urban elements to convey its relationship with Hamilton whether it be a building with graffiti or a highway in the distance. It is what Cootes has become. Cootes has also served a role of rejuvenation for the people of Hamilton. The peace and quite as well as the silence that so many of us go to experience from time to time to remember where we have come from and find something within us that we can’t quite put our finger on but that touches us inside.

Artist Statement & Explanation of Bodies of Work:

Since the early 1990’s my work has incorporated representational and expressionistic paintings through the use of Acrylic and Watercolor paint. In 1995 I began using different paper, canvas and boards throughout my paintings to express the emotional elements of the painting. I continue to incorporate different materials on which to paint and utilize different styles depending on how I feel for the subject.

In my work, I explore Canadian Landscapes, History, and Culture, through the use of subject matter I have obtained throughout my travels across Canada. My work also addresses issues such as Conservation, and Urban Sprawl, through the use of naturalistic and non urban elements that portray a sense of preservation and spirituality. In many instances both past and present elements appear in a painting, coexisting to suggest the progression of time as well as our ideas and values towards ecological issues. Finally, the paintings document as well as confront.

Artist Bio:

Born and raised in southern Ontario, James Gummerson has devoted the majority of his life to drawing and painting. For over twenty years, he has depicted the natural and rural landscapes of Canada. He has won numerous awards with most recently winning the 2014 landscape excellence award at AIRS, and a founders choice award from the former director of the National Gallery of Canada.

His work has appeared in several publications and was recently interviewed by Liana Vioa, a well known documentarian for both a radio and video interview about his career as an artist.

He is a respected teacher of Art at Mohawk college and is appreciated  by many children he teaches throughout the public school system. He also speaks out regularly against environmental issues that face us today.

He continues to travel throughout Canada and spends most of his time painting in and around the rural area of Hamilton and the Niagara Escarpment where he lives with his wife and 2 children.


NEW!  Travelling Exhibit

A War Without End

What happened when three young men left their homes to serve their country? The travelling exhibition A War Without End shares the Great War experiences of three Dundas boys. Their compelling stories have a local connection and prompt conversations about service, sacrifice, community, and family.

Each soldier’s story is told through an introductory panel, a life-size photographic reproduction of the soldier, and two retractable banners containing text and images of archival documents, photographs and artifacts from the Museum’s collection. They are portable and easy to set up.

The exhibit is available free of charge and can be borrowed individually or together. Perfect for schools, retirement homes, community centres, libraries, or other public spaces.

Contact the Museum at 905.627.7412 or email Sandra for more information.

James Knowles Bertram

Leonard Halliday Bertram

Charles Mitson




The Dundas Museum and Archives gratefully acknowledges the City of Hamilton City Enrichment Fund for its support of our Archives Community Outreach Program.