MP Larry Miller Supports Motion to Designate Diefenbaker House as a National Historic Site

June 16, 2016

MP Larry Miller Supports Motion to Designate Diefenbaker House as a National Historic Site

 

Ottawa, ON – Recently, the Honourable Peter Van Loan, Member of Parliament for York-Simcoe and Conservative Party Critic for Canadian Heritage, introduced a Private Member’s Motion that seeks to acquire the birthplace of former Canadian Prime Minister John G. Diefenbaker and convert the property into a museum. Larry Miller, Member of Parliament for Bruce-Grey-Owen Sound, is very supportive of this motion.

 

Diefenbaker’s birthplace is located in Neustadt, Ontario and holds great historical significance. The house was purchased by a history enthusiast who understood the significance of the home. The house was operated and maintained by volunteers and the Canadian Royal Heritage Trust in an effort to preserve the location. The owner of the property recently passed away and left the home to the Government of Canada in his will so that it could be used as a museum commemorating Diefenbaker. If the donation is not accepted the house will be sold.

 

Van Loan’s motion states:

 

“That, in the opinion of the House, the government should: (a) accept the offer of the donation of the birthplace of former Prime Minister John G. Diefenbaker in Neustadt, Ontario, by the owner of the property; (b) designate the property as a national historic site; (c) undertake any necessary restorations so as to operate the location as a museum; and (d) use the site to educate the public on the life of Canada’s first Prime Minister from a background other than English or French and commemorate the impact of this figure on Canada’s heritage.”

 

In response to a letter from Miller regarding the acquisition of Diefenbaker House in Neustadt, the Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change stated that the department “is unable to consider that option at the present time”.

 

“The Minister of Environment and Climate Change, who oversees national historic sites, recently indicated that the government was not interested in acquiring the location,” said Miller. “Diefenbaker’s birthplace in Neustadt is an important piece of history for Grey County. I have advocated for the creation of a museum at this location for several years, and I sincerely hope that the government reconsiders its position and recognizes the significance of the house for all of Canada.”

 

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