capturing The stories of Aurora

Due to COVID-19, the Aurora Museum & Archives

 has shifted our focus to virtual engagement.

Please scroll down for programs and activities that you can participate in from the comfort of your home.

Temple of Fame

The Temple of Fame was a popular theatrical performance that debuted in Aurora in 1900. It was performed again in 1918 as a fundraiser to support the war effort. To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the 1918 performance, the Temple of Fame was re-staged in 2018 and performed by a talented group of local actors and musicians.


This film was created by Mountain Goat Film Company and uses footage from the theatrical production of the performance that took place in Aurora on May 11 - 13, 2018.

Documenting a Pandemic

On Wednesday, March 18 the Town of Aurora declared a state of emergency in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As we navigate these challenging times, the Aurora Museum & Archives will be engaging in Rapid Response Collecting to document this moment in Aurora’s history. Rapid Response Collecting involves collecting contemporary objects in response to a major moment in recent history.

Here are a few ways you can help document Aurora's COVID-19 experience:


For more information about the Lockdown Journal please visit: https://www.mylockdowndiary.com


1) Are you making window decorations or homemade signs to show support for the front line workers? If so, when the time is right, consider donating them to the Museum.

2) Participate in our #auroraathome campaign by capturing an image of you and your household members posing on your front porch. These images will be archived by our collections team.

3) Are you keeping a journal? Consider lending it to the Museum so a copy can be made for our collection. For younger Aurorans, print this fillable diary that was created by Stephen McCarthy. No printer? No problem! The diary is also available as a screen version that can be filled out on PowerPoint or Google Slides. Once the journal is complete, the Museum would love a copy for our archive! Please email mjohnson@aurora.ca to arrange a donation.

The Aurora Museum & Archives is interested in collecting items in any format, this includes born-digital items such as images or documents that are created and published in digital formats. Or course, physical objects – both hand crafted and mass produced – are always a welcome addition to the Aurora Collection.

Aurora At Home

Did you know that during the early 1900s, families would regularly gather on their front porch for a photo? Now it’s your turn!

Help us document the self-isolation aspect of Aurora’s COVID-19 experience by creating your own front yard photo. Share your image to social media and use the hashtag #Auroraathome – together we will overcome this.

If you are not able to go outside, feel free to take a photo from inside your home – all images of Aurorans at home are welcome. No social media? No problem! Submit your at home portrait below.


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The Graham Children

c. 1900s
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The Reynolds Family

c. 1890s
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The Woodrow Family

c. 1900s
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The Scott Family

c. 1900s
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Swift & Bold:

The Queen’s York Rangers

From the York Militia to the Queen’s York Rangers – 1st American Regiment, discover how deep Aurora’s military roots run by viewing this short documentary that was produced in 2019, by Mountain Goat Film Company. This film takes the audience on a journey from the Regiment’s 18th Century foundation through to modern times.

Town Park: A Community Storybook

Now online

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12th York Battalion

c. 1900
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Track and Field

c. 1930s
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Dominion Day Lacrosse Game

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Girl Cadets

c. 1940s

Town Park: A Community Storybook has received funding from the

Virtual Museum of Canada' s Community Stories Investment Program.


As a casual meeting place, site of celebration, active sports field, and military establishment, Town Park has been a focal point in the Town of Aurora for over 150 years. Over the years and across generations, this tiny plot of land has played host to thousands of visitors seeking a sense of community.  Woven into the very fabric of Aurora, Town Park: A Community Storybook recalls the compelling history of a place that is much more than a neighbourhood park




Download the app to view over 100 historical photos of Aurora and compare them to carefully restaged photos from the same perspective today. Using the in-app camera you can create your own then and now photos, and superimpose yourself into historic photos of Aurora. In addition, two walking tours give unparalleled access to our local history.


On This Spot: Aurora

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Self-guided walking tours

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100 then & now images

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Watch the street change

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add your own photos

Canada’s Birthday Town

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Children's Parade

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Children's Parade

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Patriotic Parachutist

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German Beer Garden



Discover the story of how Aurora came to be known as Canada's Birthday Town by clicking here to watch the new documentary and explore the online exibition.


From The Collection

every week to see items featured from the Collection

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The Mission of the Aurora Museum & Archives is to serve as a repository for the collective stories and experiences of the Town of Aurora.  We are committed to preserving, promoting and presenting the vibrant and ever changing character of the Town by making our collection accessible and available.





The mandate of the Aurora Museum & Archives is to collect, preserve, exhibit, and share material that has a meaningful connection to the Town of Aurora and serves to document its evolving history.





The Aurora Museum & Archives has its origins in the Aurora Historical Society which was founded in 1963.  For 50 years the Society developed, preserved and interpreted a collection of over 16,000 objects.  Known as the Aurora Collection, it includes artifacts, photographs, textiles, books and documents spanning the period from 500 BC to present day.


In 2013, the Aurora Collection was transferred to the Town of Aurora and the Town’s first curator was hired in December 2014.  The Aurora Collection was re-branded in 2015 as the Aurora Museum & Archives and is part of the Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services Department of the Town of Aurora.


Aurora Museum & Archives

22 Church Street

Aurora, ON L4G 1G4





On Friday, March 13, 2020 the Town of Aurora announced that all Town recreation centres and arenas will be closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this includes the Aurora Museum & Archives.



Shawna White




905-727-3123 xt. 3710

Michelle Johnson


Collections & Exhibitions Coordinator


905-727-3123 xt. 3711


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© 2017 Town of Aurora Museum & Archives