Impresario Pierre Gravel, president and founder of the entertainment agency, Pierre Gravel International, officially founded the Musée Canadien de l’Arme et du Bronze in Granby in 1999. Fascinated by the history of firearms, by bronze sculptures, coins, stamps and works of art for more than 40 years, Mr. Gravel, in collaboration with his wife, Impresario Carole Potvin, dreamed of founding the Museum since 1995.
This desire materialized quickly and in the fall of 1999, the Museum received its certificate of registration from the “Registre des Entreprises du Quebec” under the name: the Musée Canadien de l’Arme et du Bronze. The Board of Directors was subsequently established and consisted entirely of volunteers. Already president of the non-profit corporation, Pierre Gravel became curator of the Museum.
Thanks to the quality of its collections, the Musée Canadien de l’Arme et du Bronze was invited by the Ministry of National Defence of Canada to present its first travelling exhibition in Ottawa in June 2005. Organized within the framework of the 17th conference of the International Committee for Museums and Collections of Firearms and Military History, this event allowed the curators of the largest military museums in the world to have early access to a selection of the contemporary weapons collection at The Musée Canadien de l’Arme et du Bronze.
The Musée Canadien de l’Arme et du Bronze’s mission is to preserve heritage, to act as witness to the past, to preserve a legacy for future generations and to raise awareness of the universe… its beauty and its challenges.
The founders of the Museum wish to allow the population to discover the history of firearms, highlighting the importance of their technology in today’s world as well as its past. They also wish to raise awareness about the representation of the symbol of armaments in artistic works, especially bronze. An important role will also be reserved currency and stamps inside collections.
Implementing exhibitions from the collections of the Musée Canadien de l’Arme et du Bronze will be split into three distinct components: permanent, temporary and travelling exhibitions. All the collections offered by the Museum will be available to the general public, with the exception of restricted firearms in the travelling exhibitions. Only representatives of security forces will be permitted into this section of travelling exhibitions.
One important aspect of the museum’s mission is education. Two types of meetings with recognized specialists were established in order to foster the education of the museum’s themes and are particularly important during travelling exhibitions. Open only to representatives of security forces, the first type of meeting concerns firearms and in particular restricted firearms. The second meeting, open to the general public, includes all four themes of the museum; firearms, bronze sculptures, coins and stamps.