Woodside welcomes you back in time to the Victorian age in Kitchener, Ontario. Former Prime Minister MacKenzie King treasured the seven years he and his family lived at Woodside from 1886-1893. Marvel at our collection of household items and be inspired by the holiday traditions of Victorian Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Site history

The original house was constructed in 1853 by James Calquhoun and was home to Prime Minister William Lyon MacKenzie King from 1886-1893.

Woodside was saved from demolition in the 1940s and the home was reconstructed and restored as a museum. Woodside received heritage designation in 1952. The home is open to visitors from October to December. The grounds are open year-round.

  • Site history
  • Designation information
  • People of significance

Victorian Christmas

Christmas in the 1890s was a joyous festival of light, colour, sounds and smells. Much of what is regarded today as Christmas custom was popularized by Victorians, who included various traditions in their celebration of the Yuletide. The giving of gifts, the Christmas tree, its decorations and seasonal food can all be traced back to different cultures. The royal families of Europe, fashion magazines and retail giants influenced the character of Christmas celebrations.

  • Christmas gifts
  • The Christmas tree
  • Christmas foods

Waterloo Pioneers Memorial Tower

Waterloo Pioneer Memorial Tower is an 18.9 metre high tower on the banks of the Grand River. Its shimmering Swiss-style copper roof, random-coursed fieldstone construction and Conestoga wagon weather vane can be seen for miles. The tower pays tribute to hardworking Pennsylvania-German pioneers who settled in Waterloo Region between 1800 and 1803.