Black Loyalist Heritage Trail

Record #: MDS0109
Last Modified: 05 Dec 2019
Last Full Update: 03 Feb 2016


Located In Eastern Shelburne County
Where To Find Us
119 Old Birchtown Rd, Site 10, Mod 3, Comp 14
Shelburne, NS B0T 1W0
Areas Served Shelburne County


Phone Main: 902-875-1310 
Site Manager: 902-875-1606 
Toll Free: 1-888-354-0772
Contact Shari Shortliffe, Office Administrator; Email:
Alternate Contact Cynthia Dorrington, Site Manager; Phone: 902-875-1606; Email:
Mailing Address B0T 1W0
Fax 902-875-1352
Volunteers Wanted (Email)

Description & Services

The Black Loyalist Heritage Site, located in Birchtown in the South Shore region (approximately 7 km northwest of Shelburne) commemorates the history and contributions of the Black Loyalists who were some of Canada’s first settlers.  
Birchtown had the distinction of being the largest free Black community in British North America in the late 18th century. It was the centre of the Black Loyalist experience and its founding represented a turning point in the history of persons of African descent in Canada.  
There is much to explore on this heritage site including the National Historic Monument of Canada honoring the landing of the Black Loyalists in Canada; St. Paul’s Church (circa 1888); and the Old School House Museum, a one-room school house built in the 1830s which exhibits various artifacts from the archaeological digs and other items which have been donated and loaned to the museum.  
Stroll or hike along the Black Loyalist Heritage Trail, a 1.5 km heritage trail around the Black Burial Ground with interpretive panels.  
Site amenities include a gift shop, public washrooms, parking and picnic area.  
Bus tours are welcome. 
Hours Office is open Monday through Friday 9am to 4pm year round.  
Museum is open daily 10am to 5pm mid-May to mid-October  
Museum is open by appointment in the off season.