Heritage Plaques and Markers
Heritage plaques and markers have been produced in Hamilton for more than one hundred years, contributing to civic memory and to a broad awareness of place and story in our communities.
Broadly speaking, Commemorative and Heritage Recognition plaques are `picture and story’ plaques, while Designated Property Plaques mark architectural or built heritage.
Types of Plaques
The Plaques and Markers Program of Hamilton’s Tourism and Culture Division currently facilitate 3 plaque types:
Guidelines and Process
Applications may be submitted at any time.
- Applications will be reviewed for approval at the next meeting of the Plaques and Markers Adjudication Committee, which meets twice annually.
- Adjudication applies to Commemorative and Heritage Recognition plaques only. Eligibility for Designated Property plaques comes only with Heritage Designation.
- Applicants are required to secure funding for proposed plaques. Staff may assist individuals and community groups who lack necessary funding, and provide guidance regarding potential sources of funds and fund raising opportunities in the community. (Note - secured funding does not guarantee topic approval).
- Applications must include a proposed location for the plaque and the name and contact information of the property owner. The property owner will be contacted by staff and asked to provide consent prior to an application moving forward.
- Proposed topics must lend themselves to presentation in the `picture & story’ format of an interpretive plaque.
- Applications which propose commemoration of unusual, forgotten, ignored or poorly known subject matter are most welcome.
- Applications which broaden geographic, socio-economic, ethno-cultural or demographic under-representation in heritage marker distribution in the City of Hamilton may be given special priority.
- A plaque may be approved if the topic and location is associated with one or more of these characteristics:
- Historical Importance
- close association of storied events with a specific location
- close association of a location with the story of a noteworthy person
- effective illustration of a significant pattern in the cultural, social, political, military, economic or industrial development of Hamilton in either pre-, or post- European contact eras
- Architectural Importance
- association of a building or structure with an event or person of great significance
- an outstanding example of an architectural style
- an exceptionally early or unusual structure
- the first or last of a kind
- a visual landmark of significant cultural importance
- a storied relationship between building and site
- association with a major architect or company
- part of a group of buildings which form an important streetscape
- Historical Importance
Applicants will be notified of application status after the relevant meeting of the adjudication committee. Payment for approved plaques is required prior to staff moving forward.