Quebec, Canada

Morrin Cultural Centre

Quebec's first prison has transformed into a cultural center promoting the area's English language speakers


Erected in 1808, the Morrin Centre was Quebec City's first prison (it was known as Quebec Common Gaol at the time), though it was perhaps best known as the site of public execution in the city. At least 17 documented executions were held between 1808 and 1867, including that of Docteur l'Indienne, Quebec's first recognized serial killer, in 1829.

Later, the building was transformed into an English college and was home to the first learned society of Canada, the Literary and Historical Society of Quebec. But visitors can still view the remaining cell blocks, among them the original death row.

The Literary and Historical Society of Quebec took control of the building in 2004 and is overseeing extensive restoration of its interior. Today, the site is meant to educate the public about the present-day culture and historic contribution of the local English language speakers.

  • Hours
    Library: Tue.-Sun.: 12:00 p.m.4:00 p.m.; Tue.: 12:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m.; Sat.: 10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.
  • Website
  • Address
    44 chaussée des Écossais, Quebec, G1R 4H3, Canada
  • Cost
    Guided tours are available for $6, but you can enter the library for free during open hours.
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Take St-Jean Street until you see St-Stanislas street on your right, walk up and you will see the Morrin Centre to the right-hand side after the arch.
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