Directorate of History and Heritage

Welcome to the Directorate of History and Heritage (DHH) website of the Department of National Defence. DHH was founded in 1996, following the amalgamation of the National Defence History Directorate and the Directorate of Military Traditions and Heritage. The roots of our organization go all the way back to the First World War.

Even in the early stages of the Internet, the usefulness of this remarkable communication tool was obvious. From the very beginning, our vision was to make the DHH website an essential tool for Canadian researchers. We have established three goals in this regard: to keep our internal and external audiences informed about the various functions performed by DHH; to make available a maximum number of archives as well as works that have been published by our predecessors, but that are no longer available in book stores; and to provide any other relevant information. Anyone comparing what was available in 1996 with what is offered today will see a world of difference, not only in the quantity, but also in the quality of the information online, which is frequently updated.

DHH serves the Canadian people and the Canadian Forces. DHH enjoys significant credibility in Canada and around the world. The current site, which will more than meet people’s expectations, will add to that credibility with its reliability and the type of information it provides.

The War of 1812

Remembrance Day

Victoria Cross

Today in Canadian Military History

  • 23/4/1915
    For his actions at St. Julien, Belgium, Fred Fisher of the 13th Battalion, C.E.F. earned the Victoria Cross. (Posthumous). Coming up from St. Julien that day during the Second Battle of Ypres, he discovered two 18-pounder field guns in danger of being overrun by attacking German infantry. Fisher brought his machine gun into action, and with the help of six other soldiers, held the enemy off until the field guns could be withdrawn.
  • 23/4/1923
    The Canadian Air Force motto "Sic Itur ad Astra" is replaced by the Royal Air Force motto "Per Ardua ad Astra" ("Through Adversity to the Stars").