‘Ottawa’ Capital Facts: The Basement Speakeasy Inside an Old Church
In celebration of Canada’s 150th birthday, the Citizen is rolling out one fact each day for 150 days until July 1, highlighting the odd, the fascinating and the important bits of Ottawa history you might not know about.
The former Saint Brigid’s church, located at St. Patrick and Cumberland streets, was established as a parish in 1890 for Irish immigrants who moved to Canada. The immigrants were a mix of those who arrived to work on the canal, and those who fled their home country after the Irish potato famine in the 1840s. The old church is now home to Saint Brigid’s Centre for the Arts, and in the basement is Brigid’s Well, an Irish speakeasy-style pub open to the public.
— Rachel Dale