Saturday, 21 April 2012

Diefenbunker near Ottawa

We went to the Diefenbunker. For me, it was scary. Creepy, as the artifacts date from my days as a clerk.

No photos were allowed, you can see it on-line here. You gotta look this up. What a museum from the Cold War!

It is the most bizarre place, to my mind.
Rooms for various government personnel, including a private room for the Prime Minister, with private bathroom/shower.
There are communication rooms, with ancient teletype machines.
The theory was that they would have 500 key people taken by helicopter to this place, underground, where they would be protected for a month from radioctive fallout.

This photo is the entrance, with a helicopter pad nearby. You enter through a long tunnel.

In the entrance to the tunnel is a Fat Boy bomb. There are numerous maps demonstrating the radioactive fallout.
In the administrative sections they have maps of Canadian cities.

You can download an Audio/Video Guide (for iTunes), but it is tedious. You can watch Project Rustic, an on-line game.

The Diefenbunker, Canada’s Cold War Museum began operation in June 1998. The site was owned and operated by the Government of Canada, Department of National Defence from 1959 to 1994. The site was nicknamed after John Diefenbaker, Prime Minister at the time the government decided to construct the facility. Should nuclear war have broken out or seemed imminent, the Diefenbunker would have been the safe haven for those providing the thin thread of continuity of government. For the 33 years it was in operation, day-to-day operations made it the key strategic communications facility for the Canadian Forces.

The local library is nearby, as well. A bit disturbing for me!



5 comments:

Kay L. Davies said...

I can see how they thought it would be a good idea, but of course time has proven its fallacy. Still, I wonder if the Harpies would insist upon using it even though it is now a museum.
K

Powell River Books said...

The Cold War and fear on a nuclear bomb were huge when I was growing up. We had drills in school all the time. Not being in the top 500 I'm sure all of our efforts wouldn't have made a difference. You are right, scary. - Margy

Linda said...

I remember the cold war and bomb shelter drills from my time in school also. Seems so far away...

Red said...

There were two Diefenbunkers. the second was at Penhold Alberta. I t was destroyed about 10 years ago. It was never used for tours after it was decommissioned.

Jenn Jilks said...

Never knew that, Red!