Revitalization of Manotick Main Street

At one time, the Village of Manotick boasted three mills — a grist mill, a sawmill, and a bung-mill, and the village housed workers for this small industrial complex.  Manotick's Main Street was the original Highway 16, a the time, the primary route from Ottawa to Prescott.  

Manotick’s industrial roots and utilitarian Main St. are gently transitioning — retaining that village ‘meet-your-neighbour’ feel, while being modern enough to meet the needs of today’s busy families.  Today, Manotick's Main Street is a lively meeting place for locals and visitors.  Our walk will explore the transitioning of the downtown village core.

We will be stopping at a number of Manotick landmarks, where individual speakers will tell us about the history, contribution, and evolution of each:   

Watson's Mill, one of Ottawa's familiar museums of 19th century life.  Watson's Mill was built in 1859 of limestone quarried from the river bed.  It is one of the finest examples of a working 19th century grist mill in Canada.

Dickinson House, built in 1868, and frequented by Canada's first prime minister, Sir John A. Macdonald.  

Miller's Oven, a City-owned, community-operated restaurant venue, with a unique story to share.  Built around 1880, it has had many purposes, from telegraph office, pool room, and public library, before becoming the restaurant it is today.

The Black Dog Bistro, a village fixture, voted Ottawa’s favourite restaurant in 2016.  Get the inside scoop from the owner, on the challenges of carefully preserving the Boomtown frontage of an adjacent historic building, while expanding the original restaurant. 

The Vault Bistro, which transformed the former Royal Bank building into a restaurant 

The old General Store, currently transitioning into 692 Coffee and Wine Bar.

5567 Main St.  Built in 1904, from stone quarried from nearby Limebank, this building became the new United Church in 1925, and later evolved into a general community gathering space, opening its doors to interesting avant garde cultural experiences.  Most recently, it has been sympathetically enlarged and today hosts a variety of special events.

Mahogany Dock & Landing, at the north edge of Mahogany Harbour, on the back channel of the Rideau River, near Eastman Ave.  Once a dock for the transport of grain to the St. Lawrence, it is a soon-to-be-opened visitors' facility inviting Rideau boaters to come in and experience the many amenities of the Village.  



The walk will commence on the lawn of Dickinson’s House in the heart of the ‘old village’ (across the street from Watson's Mill).  After spending a few minutes appreciating Dickinson House and Watson’s Mill, we'll meander down Mill St. to Main Street, and then go south along Main St. ending near the site of the new marina and tourist information centre, Mahogany Dock & Landing. 

The sidewalk is fairly easy to navigate, with a bit of an incline both up to the United Church and down to Mahogany Harbour.  

About the walk leader

Anne Robinson is a long-time resident of Manotick.  She is President of the Manotick Culture, Parks, & Recreation Association.

Salima Ismail is the chair of the Board of Management of the Manotick BIA. 


Anne Robinson and Salima Ismail

Date:Sat May 4, 2019
Time:3:00 PM
Duration: 1 hour 15 min
Language: English
Start:Dickinson House, Manotick, \n opposite Watson's Mill
End:Mahogany Dock (near Eastman Ave)
Area:Village of Manotick
Distance:1.0 km

The walk will follow village sidewalks.   There are occasional inclines.

Dickinson House ( (from Dickinson House home page) The Manotick 'Industrial Complex' circa 1900 (from Watson's Mill facebook page) Manotick around 1940.  Note Watson's Mill on the far side of the bridge. (From Watson's Mill facebook page) Watson's Mill Watson's Mill, photographed by Sue Skillen (from Watson's Mill facebook page). The Manotick United Church, front view. The Manotick United Church, view of South side.
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