The Historic Sites Association presents Newfoundland and Labrador history and heritage through:

  • Partnership with Parks Canada
  • A retail operation
  • Historical outreach projects

To achieve its goals HSA regularly contributes funds to projects with Parks Canada and other partners, organizes events, and works independently to present and preserve the heritage and history of the province.

A Partnership with Parks Canada

On January 20, 1981 an agreement between Parks Canada and the Newfoundland Historic Trust was established to make the Trust a full Co-operating Association with Parks Canada. The aim of the agreement was to assist Parks Canada in providing services to the public and to generate revenue towards activities supporting Parks Canada’s objectives.

In 1984, the Association branched off from the Historic Trust, and the new name Newfoundland Historic Parks Association (NHPA) was assumed.  In 1984, the NHPA was incorporated dissolving the existing Co-operating Association in favour of establishing a new and separate body to handle the growing number of initiatives and programs.  In 1998 the NHPA name was changed to the Historic Sites Association of Newfoundland and Labrador.

A Retail Operation

To support its work HSA operates nine Heritage Shops around the province, Cabot Tower, Castle Hill, Cape Spear, L’Anse aux Meadows, Port au Choix, Ryan Premises, Water Street, Duckworth Street, and the St. John’s Airport.  It also operates the Water Street Art Gallery where new and established artists can showcase their work in downtown St. John's.  The HSA employs over 55 full-time, part-time and seasonal staff.  HSA supports the local craft industry by purchasing, promoting and selling local craft and gifts.  HSA also provides an online store extending the reach and promotion of NL products.

Historical Outreach Projects

The HSA has supported many projects including: the reconstruction, operation and maintenance of Hawthorne Cottage from 1994 - 2014, the reconstruction of the Queen’s Battery at Signal Hill (1987); The Art Centennial Project (1985) used to support the Signal Hill Tattoo; the Cabot Tower interior refurbishment (1992);  The Meeting of Two Worlds sculpture at L’Anse aux Meadows (2000); the renovation of the Signal Hill Visitor Centre (2003); The Celebrating Bartlett project (2009); and several book publications including Wineland Voyages (1992), Vinland Revisited (2000), Ancient Cultures Bountiful Seas (1999), Westward Vikings (2006) and The New Land with the Green Meadows (2013).

Other projects the HSA manages or supports on an on-going basis include the Manning Awards, the Heritage Fairs for students in grades 4 to 12, the Bartlett Lecture and the Dr. Paul O’Neill Scholarship to name a few.

See “Our Work” for a listing of some the work that we do.