The Library of Parliament

Update – January 2018


Today, I’m taking you on a tour of the Library of Parliament. It’s an amazing building set in the High Victorian Gothic Revival style by Thomas Fuller and Chilion Jones. It opened in 1876. Directing a staff of 300, Sonia L’Heureux was appointed Parliamentary Librarian on June 22, 2012.

Canadian Parliament photos by Michel Loiselle

Library Business

Parliament photos by Michel LoiselleThe Library of Parliament offers information, reference and research services to parliamentarians and their staff, parliamentary committees, associations and delegations, and senior Senate and House of Commons officials.

Current issue reviews, backgrounders, compilations, legislative summaries, reading lists and finding aids are just some of the Library’s information tools.

The Library has more than 17 linear kilometres of materials (600,000 items) in its collection, including books, periodicals, government documents, CD-ROMs and videos. Parliamentary clients can also tap into services such as on-line databases, an electronic news filtering system and an on-line catalogue of information right from their desktops.

Canadian Parliament photos by Michel Loiselle



The main reading room rises to a vaulted ceiling and the walls and stacks are lined with white pine panelling carved into a variety of textures, flowers, masks, and mythical creatures. In the galleries are displayed the coats of arms of the seven provinces that existed in 1876, as well as that of the Dominion of Canada, and standing directly in the centre of the room is a white marble statue of Queen Victoria, sculpted by Marchall Wood.

The Library

Interesting Facts


Not many people are aware that the building is featured on the Canadian ten dollar banknote. The front features a portrait of Canada’s first Prime Minister Sir John A. Macdonald, and a metallic image of the Library of Parliament.


BuildingA significant portion of the old copper roofing from the Library of Parliament renovation, was reused by the Canadian War Museum at various locations throughout the museum’s interior spaces.

Fire of 1916

The 1916 fire that destroyed the majority of the Centre Block; the building was only connected to the main complex by a single corridor and the library clerk at the time, Michael MacCormac, secured the library’s iron doors before the fire could spread into that area.

Evening LibraryThere is so much more to know and learn about the Library of Parliament. Visit the Library site for an interesting fact sheet and more.

The images in this essay are part of the Canadian Parliament photo collection of more than 200 pictures. Images start at $5 and are available for immediate download.

I hope you’ve enjoyed the tour. Have an excellent evening.

Michel –

Sources: Wikipedia, Library of Parliament, Royal Canadian Mint.



Tulips on Parliament Hill The West Block of Canada 7 Year Parliament Project – Politically Speaking Canada in One Photo – Design and ImagingHaunted CastleNight ShotsHey That’s My ImageMy Canadian Pride Is ShowingCanada Day on Parliament HillImages in Color and in Stereo5 Reasons to Use PhotosGargoyles on Parliament Hill Christmas on Parliament Hill – Live Music is Always Best – The Confederation Building


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s