Over the six years that I’ve been in Montreal, I had visited the lecture hall at the Redpath Museum for professional lectures. The corridor leading to the hall had skeletons of various sea creatures and there was a nice little diorama near the entrance. Since this is on the campus of McGill University, I assumed that there were either classrooms or offices on the floors above and that this was the extent of the “museum”.
Then one day last fall our office was asked to do some consulting work on the building. This required climbing to the floors above and eventually the roof. When I reached the second floor, I was completely blown away. It was like finding a hidden treasure. A full natural history museum complete with a dinosaur skeleton.
So I resolved that I would return with the family in order to get a better look. Our daughter had suddenly become infatuated with dinosaurs this spring after being introduced to them in school. So we made an excursion downtown to visit the museum. I have to say I’m greatly impressed. My point of comparison is the Field Museum back in my old hometown of Chicago. The Redpath Museum has all the main exhibits that the Field Museum has, but boiled down enough to be covered in a leisurely Sunday afternoon (or maybe even a long lunch hour). It also has an emphasis on items from Quebec.
And on top of it all, the museum is free. It is open from 9 to 5 during the week and only from 1 to 5 on Sunday during the weekend. It’s definitely worth a visit for both the young and old.