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Location DB > Canada > Nova Scotia > Halifax > Georges Island
Georges Island
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 Database Info
created by tribeachpunk on 6/21/2008 5:26 PM
last modified by fr00tCake on 9/19/2023 2:58 PM
Publically Viewable Publically Viewable
This location has been labeled by its creator as Public, and therefore can be viewed by anyone.
Georges Island, a small drumlin located in the middle of Halifax harbour, was shaped by glaciers which swept Nova Scotia thousands of years ago. Its strategic location and glacial till made it ideally suited to becoming the heart of the seaward defences for Halifax's important naval base.

Today, Parks Canada is responsible for the preservation and stabilization of the cultural resources on Georges Island.

This National Historic Site of Canada is part of the Halifax Defence Complex.

9.19.2023 - Now a public park, it is open to the public from June to October on Saturdays, Sundays, and select Fridays. You can take a ferry from Ambassatours, or any private water craft. Dock space is available, but limited....
 Basic Information
Type: Building/Tunnel/Outdoor
Status: National Historic Site
Accessibility: Open from June to October Saturdays, Sundays, and select Fridays
Recommendation: drop everything - must see
 Physical Information

Halifax, Nova Scotia
Owner: Parks Canada
  • See a map of this location
  •  Hazards
  • unsafe flooring
  • flooding
  • water
  •  Interesting Features
    Fort Charlotte is largely subterranean. Inside it's maze of tunnels you'll find corridors leading to magazines, sleeping quarters, and a handful of large 10 inch RMLs remaining beneath the earth in the lower battery. Imagine being the guy who had to fire that thing!
     Security Measures
  • wooden boarding
  • harbour is monitored
  •  Historical Dates
    Built: 1750
    Closed: 1965
     Required Equipment
  • camera
  •  Recommended Equipment
    flashlight and ferry ticket!
    Georges Island became militarized in 1750 to protect Halifax from a seaward attack. Used as a prison for displaced Acadiens from 1755 - 1763, the island for was refitted during the American Revolution.

    In 1798, a modern fortress was built on the island as the fort was again refitted. It was at this time when the fortress on the island was named Fort Charlotte (by Prince Edward for his mother Queen Charlotte).

    A new, largely subterranean, fort with modern rifled muzzle-loading (RML) guns was constructed during the American Civil War as concern that British North American colonies could become directly involved in conflict.

    Built underground is a maze of tunnels, magazines, and sleeping quarters. Eight 9 inch RMLs were placed in the upper battery of the new Fort Charlotte while four 10 inch guns were installed in the lower.

    Weapon technology would soon render the RMLs installed on Georges Island obsolete.

    The British would establish underwater harbour defence facilties on the island to prevent any ships from entering. The island's role in harbour defences was gradually reduced.

    The Canadian Government became responsible for harbour defences in Halifax in 1906 and assumed ownership of Georges Island.

    The island became was again used for underwater harbour defences (like the submarine net) during the World Wars 1 and 2. An anti-aircraft unit during WW2 were the last soldiers ever stationed on the island.

    The lighthouse on the island, originally erected n 1876, remained active until it was destroyed by fire in 1916 and replaced in 1919. It was manned by a human lightkeeper until 1972 when it became automated.

    Source: Parks Canada: Georges Island
     Media Coverage
    -----Links below this line were broken or dead on 9.19.2023-----

  • N.S. parks get cash (March 21, 2009)

  • Widening of Cabot Trail on Parks Canada's to-do list in N.S. (March 20, 2009)
  •  Future Plans
    The island is not open to the public due to the fragile condition of resources. Parks Canada is now preparing this heritage site for future visitation.

    Update: Georges Island National Historic Site is open select days from June through October (subject to suitable ferry weather).


    Add your own story
     Photo Galleries
    Click to view gallery
    Blackbird's Trip
    Sat, Jun 14th, 2008
    posted by Blackbird
    17 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Sat, Jun 21st, 2008
    posted by tribeachpunk
    25 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    June 2008 & 2009
    Sun, Jun 14th, 2009
    posted by tbeckerson
    17 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Views of the Island
    Mon, Jul 10th, 2017
    posted by Radio2600
    4 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Canada Day 2024
    Mon, Jul 8th, 2024
    posted by Radio2600
    25 pictures

    Add your own photos

    Mark all galleries as Seen

    Pier 21 from Georges Island
    Sat, Jun 21st, 2008
    posted by tribeachpunk

    Georges Island from Bishops Landing
    Thu, Jan 27th, 2011
    posted by tribeachpunk
     Web Links


    -----Links below this line were broken or dead on 9.19.2023-----

  • Parks Canada: Georges Island

  • Halifax UrbEx: Georges Island

  • NS Museum of Natural History: NS Snakes: The Melanistic Garter Snakes of Georges Island
  •  Contribute

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     Moderator Rating
    The moderator rating is a neutral rating of the content quality, photography, and coolness of this location.

    This location has not yet been rated by a moderator.
    This location's validation is current. It was last validated by Emperor Wang on 7/8/2024 7:28 PM.

     Latest Changes
  • on Jul 8 24 at 19:28, Emperor Wang validated this location
  • on Jul 8 24 at 2:41, Radio2600 updated gallery Canada Day 2024
  • on Jul 8 24 at 2:39, Radio2600 updated gallery picture Queen Mary 2 from Georges Island
  • on Jul 8 24 at 2:38, Radio2600 updated gallery picture Radar 2
  • on Jul 8 24 at 2:37, Radio2600 updated gallery picture 9 Inch Gun
  • on Jul 8 24 at 2:36, Radio2600 updated gallery picture Caponier
  • on Jul 8 24 at 2:36, Radio2600 updated gallery picture Battery Corridor
  • on Jul 8 24 at 2:35, Radio2600 updated gallery picture The Ditch showing a Caponier
  • on Jul 8 24 at 2:35, Radio2600 updated gallery picture Caponier Firing Ports
  • on Jul 8 24 at 2:33, Radio2600 updated gallery picture Tram Track
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