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Mazinaw Pictographs National Historic Site of Canada

Bon Echo Provincial Park / Parc provincial Bon Echo, Ontario, K0H, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1982/06/12

View of the rock art paintings on the cliff face that rises sheer out of the water at Mazinaw Pictographs National Historic Site of Canada, 2008.; Agence Parcs Canada / Parks Canada Agency, Erica Lenton, 2008.
General view
General view of the Mazinaw Pictographs, showing the views from the far shore towards the cliffs, 2008.; Agence Parcs Canada / Parks Canada Agency, Erica Lenton, 2008.
General view
Detail view of the pictographic symbols at Mazinaw Pictographs National Historic Site of Canada, 2008.; Agence Parcs Canada / Parks Canada Agency, Erica Lenton, 2008.
Detail

Other Name(s)

Mazinaw Pictographs National Historic Site of Canada
Mazinaw Pictographs
Peintures rupestres Mazinaw

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2008/11/12

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

Located at the confluence of Upper and Lower Mazinaw Lakes, within Bon Echo Provincial Park, the Mazinaw Pictograph National Historic Site of Canada is a large collection of pictographic symbols applied to a cliff face that rises sheer out of the water. The official recognition refers to a narrow band of 30 meters to the west and to the east of the cliff face.

Heritage Value

Mazinaw Pictographs was designated a national historic site of Canada in 1982 because:
- it is the largest rock art site on the southern Canadian Shield and the only major pictograph site in Southern Ontario; and,
- it is a very complex site containing many more abstract and geometric symbols than is normally the case.

Archaeological surveys of this site began as early as 1895, and continued periodically through to the present times. For size and complexity, this site has no rivals; no doubt the dramatic setting of a great cliff rising sheer out of the water was a factor in the choice of this location for pictographic arts.

Source: Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, Minutes, April 2006.

Character-Defining Elements

Key elements contributing to the heritage value of this site include:
- the rock art paintings, spread out over 65 rock faces along a 2.5 metre stretch of the cliff face;
- the relatively natural setting of the paintings in relation to the cliff, the lake, and the surrounding provincial park;
- views from the far shore, or from the water, towards the cliffs.

Recognition

Jurisdiction

Federal

Recognition Authority

Government of Canada

Recognition Statute

Historic Sites and Monuments Act

Recognition Type

National Historic Site of Canada

Recognition Date

1982/06/12

Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

n/a

Theme - Category and Type

Peopling the Land
Canada's Earliest Inhabitants
Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Learning and the Arts
Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Philosophy and Spirituality

Function - Category and Type

Current

Leisure
Historic or Interpretive Site

Historic

Undetermined (archaeological site)
Exposed Site

Architect / Designer

n/a

Builder

n/a

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

National Historic Sites Directorate, Documentation Centre, 5th Floor, Room 89, 25 Eddy Street, Gatineau, Québec

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier

348

Status

Published

Related Places

n/a

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