Souvenir of Lost Ottawa

Lost Ottawa has a new book out. It’s an ebook called Souvenir of Lost Ottawa, you can get it for free by signing up to our mailing list.

The book contains 40 beautifully colorized images of Canada’s capital from the years 1903 to 1914.

It’s got classic scenes like Parliament Hill, Sparks Street, and Notre Dame Basilica.

It’s got places we have lost, such as Lover’s Lane, the Old Post Office, and the lake that once graced Major’s Hill Park.

It’s got beautiful features of the city that were brand new at the time, including the Driveway, Nepean Point, Strathcona Park, and more. 

Plus, It’s a historical feast for the eyes. 

See Ottawa at the Height of the Edwardian Era

The images selected for this book capture the essence of Ottawa at the height of the Edwardian Era, which was a time of peace and prosperity for a city that had been growing for almost a century and steadily adding to its beauty.

These are views of places and buildings in the Edwardian city that were thought to be the most beautiful, most characteristic, and distinctive. Views of which the citizens were proud and scenes that visitors wanted to see. 

Each view was created in glorious colour, inviting you to put yourself in the picture and imagine what the city was like at the time.


Click on the picture to see more images.

Where Did the Images Come From?

The pictures in our book were originally published as postcards by the Valentine & Sons of Dundee, Scotland, which opened Canadian offices in 1903.

Each view is based on an original black and white photographs (in some cases sketches) that were then colourized by Valentine’s artists.

These views were later put together in a small postcard-sized booklet entitled Souvenir of Ottawa, published in 1914. 

There were, in fact, two editions of the original booklet, each containing  30 scenes, with only 16 scenes in common. Many of the other views were simply different images of the same places. Others were of completely different places.  

In our edition, we present 15 of the views in common and a selection of the others. We’ve left out views that seemed overly repetitive, ending up with 40 views in total. That’s ten more than there were in either of the original booklets.

We’ve digitized and repaired the images as needed. We’ve added historical notes at the end, and we’ve also added description of each scene that were entirely missing in the originals.

In short, we’ve done a lot of work, making us proud to bring you this unique window on Ottawa history.  


What we hope you’ll do with our book

We hope you’ll get our ebook by signing up to our mailing list, using the form below. Once you’ve saved a copy, enjoy! Then tell your friends!

We really hope you’ll put the book on your phone or iPad  and there’s a reason for that. 

You see the postcards in the original versions of this booklet were printed in a completely random order. What we’ve done is arrange them in walking order. That’s so you can not only put yourself in the picture in your mind, but actually go there!

Take the book with you and look at the scenes for yourself. You’ll get a fresh look at Lost Ottawa!