Project history

The Tantramar Heritage Trust is dedicated to recreating the glory days of the Campbell Carriage Factory. Upon receiving this unique property (the only carriage factory remaining in North America in its original location) in 1998, the Trust began the first of several phases needed to establish a museum. This veritable aboveground archaeological site was mapped so that the original location of each item could be recorded. Each artifact was first labeled, then catalogued and researched. Phase I (Artifact Registration and Building Renovation) was completed in the summer of 2001 with over 6,000 artifacts having been recorded. Building restoration commenced in 1999 with the old factory being raised with new sills, foundation and flooring. New siding, shingles, doors, window repair and replacement and paint have improved the exterior.

Phase II, the building and installation of exhibits, began in 2000 with Cardinal Communications designing future exhibits and floor plans. Each step of a carriage’s manufacturing is represented through a combination of displays and interpretive panels. Artifacts and interpretative areas were arranged during the summer of 2002. In June 2003 an entry deck was installed and a parking area for visitors constructed. On 21 June 2003 the Museum was officially opened.

The summer of 2008 saw the construction of an addition to the rear of the main building, replacing a structure which was demolished in the 1980s. A 200 year old timber frame formed the core of the addition which provided a reception area, gift shop, office space, washrooms, and an area for hosting events.

In 2011 restoration work was carried out on the historic Job Anderson blacksmith shop which had been moved to the site in 2002. This replaced the original Campbell blacksmith shop which was demolished in the 1970s. The restoration included the construction of a working forge so that the site has a fully functioning blacksmith shop producing items for sale at the Museum.

The Factory is a designated Municipal and Provincial Heritage Building and is listed on the Canadian Register of Historic Places. It is Sackville’s first municipal museum and one of the most important heritage buildings in the Region. The Tantramar Heritage Trust is truly thrilled to have been able to rescue this derelict building and to bring it to life as a Museum dedicated to the “horse era of Tantramar.”

Steps along the way

January, 1997
Written Proposal from the Tantramar Heritage Trust Board to the owners, George Campbell and Sons Ltd.
September, 1997
Response from the owners and agreement to donate the property to the Trust.
October, 1997
Survey and Sub-division Plan completed.
February, 1998
Transferral of title from George Campbell & Sons Ltd. to Tantramar Heritage Trust Inc.
Inventory and registration of the 6000+ artifacts.
Summer, 2002
Organization of artifacts into Displays
Fall, 2002
Job Anderson Blacksmith Shop moved to the site
21 June, 2003
Opening as a Public Museum.
12 August, 2004
Unveiling of Monument to The Acadian Settlement of Tintamarre
Summer, 2008
Construction of addition to rear of main building. Interior work completed in Spring, 2009
Summer, 2011
Restoration of blacksmith shop and construction of working forge