We examine the history of Canadian citizenship: what it is, what it does, and who holds it.

$15 & up/person
Experiential 2 Hours Suitable for ages 12 and up

What's in a citizen?

As we visit a list of monuments located at the heart of Canada’s capital city, we will explore various historical debates that have taken place between governments and different segments of society on the topic of citizenship. The tour highlights various players who have sought to define and control citizenship by both expanding and restricting access to it and by changing its very definition and character. In thinking about the uses, abuses, and meanings of Canadian citizenship in this way, participants will gain critical perspectives of the utility, control, and consequences of Canadian citizenship. We will try addressing the following questions (and some of the historical responses to them): Who should be a Canadian citizen and who should be allowed to decide this? What rights and responsibilities should Canadian citizenship entail? What does citizenship mean? Is it a right, privilege, or curse?

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Scheduled tour
Happens monthly.
  • Printed souvenir postcard
  • Maximum of 25 people on tour
Private tour
Minimum booking: party of 3 people. Happens if you request.
  • Tour content is tweaked on the spot to cover your interests
  • Printed souvenir postcard
  • Maximum of 8 people on tour
  • Follow-up additional resources by email
Customized tour
Minimum booking: 1 person (or more). Happens if you request.
  • Pre-tour chat with your guide to discuss your interests in topic (optional)
  • Content customized to your interests
  • Printed souvenir postcard
  • Your group only on tour
  • Follow-up additional resources by email

Request a private or customized (de)tour
September 2022
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun

Stops along the way (preview):

Start - 220 Elgin St. (Canadian Tribute to Human Rights)

We’ll talk broadly about what Citizenship means and connect it to the Canadian context.

Mid-point - 111 Wellington St. (Parliament Hill)

Using the various statues on Parliament Hill, we’ll talk about the changing nature of Canadian citizenship throughout history.

End - 301 Wellington St. (Supreme Court of Canada)

We’ll talk about the Charter of Rights and Freedoms’ recent influence over debates around Canadian citizenship.

Brad Wiebe

Your tour guide
Brad Wiebe is an historian turned (accidental) public servant. Graduate of Carleton University’s Public History program, developer of the “Histories of Parliament Hill” podcast, and former Tour Guide at both Parliament Hill and the Legislative Building of Manitoba, Brad seeks to engage members of his community in discussions about how we can learn from history to enrich our ideas about ourselves and about our future.
"Refreshing new type of tour! We took the citizenship tour and we loved it! It was very instructive from an historical perspective and allowed us to challenge our mindsets. I highly recommend it."
Tripadvisor review, October 2017
“The best way I can think to describe this experience is not as a walking tour, but as a lecture. A lecture given by a engaging speaker that happens to also walk you around physical examples of the concepts has describing to highlight his ideas. I was walking around Ottawa all day by the time my evening tour came around and I was starting to feel like I didn't want to go. Despite that this tour was still the highlight of my day and I recommend it to anyone.”
Jason P
Tripadvisor review, July 2015

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