MacDonald House Museum
Cape Breton, Nova Scotia
Charles N. MacDonald and Rodney MacDonald.
In the 1970s the last inhabitant of the house (Jessie MacDonald) moved out. Around the same time local community members and family members of the MacDonald's began to think about what they could do to honour the pioneers and preserve their way of life. The Great Grandson of Alexander MacDonald, Charles N MacDonald, offered the home of his birth to the community group for use as a museum. The loose collection of people interested in their local history formally formed the Lake Ainslie Historical Society in 1977 with the goal of establishing a museum to honour the history of Lake Ainslie and the MacDonald family.
MacDonald House Museum consists of a restored 1850's house, display barns, a country schoolhouse, a fine collection of early 1900's furniture and artifacts, displays of farm machinery and implements, hand woven fabric displays and much more.
East Lake Ainslie is located in Inverness County, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. It was first settled by Scottish immigrants beginning in the early 1800's. Among these pioneer settlers was Alexander (the Weaver) MacDonald, his wife Mary (nee MacLean) and their children. The MacDonald's settled on a 200 acre property approximately 3 miles from the north end of the lake on the eastern shoreline in 1823. In the 1850's (actual date unknown) the family constructed a new home which still stands today. The MacDonald family became the first merchants in the area and also had the first Way Station/Post Office. Over the years six generations of MacDonald's have lived on the property settled by Alexander.