Monday, July 16, 2018

Dawes Brewery


Year unknown.
9 of the 31 Black horses owned by the Dawes brewery in Montreal.
The stables were in Griffintown






Entrepreneur Thomas Dawes founded the Dawes Brewery in 1811 on the banks of the Lachine Canal.

When he died, his two sons, Thomas and James, took over the company. When James died, his two sons went into business with their uncle Thomas. One of these two grandsons, Andrew James, eventually assumed ownership of the company and became president of National Breweries Ltd., a group of breweries including the Dawes Brewery.

This company was the first in Canada to employ the telegraph, using it to communicate between its Lachine facility and offices downtown.

A true family business, the company continued to be run by other descendants (including Norman J., Kenneth T., and Donald) between 1921 and 1952, although the brewery shut down its Lachine operations in 1927.



1943-1944 sign atop of Dawes brewery on St-Maurice St.


After that, the buildings were used for various purposes: a candle factory, the sale and repair of household articles, and now a museum. The Maison du Brasseur (Brewers home), Vielle Brasserie (Old Brewery), and Pavillon de l'Entrepot (Warehouse) now make up the Guy-Descary Cultural Complex.

Photographs courtesy of Roger Albert and Griffintown Memories on Facebook

Friday, July 6, 2018

Apocalypse for a horseman

FOR 40 YEARS, Leo Leonard has been operating the Griffintown Horse Palace. But a redevelopment plan for the area would turn his property into housing and commercial space.


Leo Leonard at his Griffintown stable on Ottawa St., with horse Rocky in the background. “People say I should turn the place into a zoo and charge admission,” he says.

During the Second World War you could hire a calèche to take you up to Mount Royal for $5. Today, if you can find a driver willing to make the four-hour return trip to the mountain, it would cost about $300.

“When I began driving in 1942, it was another era,” said Leo Leonard. He has owned the Griffintown Horse Palace on Ottawa St. for 40 years.

“Back then there were 62 carriages at Dominion Square outside the Windsor Hotel and another 25 outside the gates of McGill. Today, there are only 35 calèche drivers’ permits, and all the drivers are down in Old Montreal.”

The price of a calèche ride is $45 for a half-hour, $80 for an hour. Competition is stiff.

Horse-drawn carriages are an anachronism in the 21st century, and their future, as well as that of Leonard’s stables just south of the École de technologie supérieure on Notre Dame St. W., is up in the air.

The Southwest borough has designs on Leonard’s property, one of the last in the area to house horses.




A redevelopment plan unveiled in October for the neighbourhood has the stables, tack house and corral earmarked as an area for office and commercial space, and affordable and subsidized housing.

Inspired by Toronto’s Distillery district, an industrial area that was transformed into a gentrified neighbourhood, urban planners see Griffintown as an ideal site for redevelopment.

Heritage Montreal’s Dinu Bumbaru says while he wel- comes development in the area, razing the stables would be a mistake.

“They are not a great monument,” he said, “but they are the only remnants to remind us that the driving force behind the metropolis was the horse.

“There is room in the city’s heritage policy to keep Leonard’s stables, and perhaps integrate them into a … network of Montreal memory to remind us it is the unheralded blue-collar workers who make a great city.”

Leonard was born in Goose Village and raised in Griffintown. He is 81.

Known as Clawhammer Jack, he is probably one of the last residents to have lived and worked in the neighbourhood for eight decades.

His permit to run his stable has a grandfather clause that states he can keep horses on the property as long as he owns it.

Leonard concedes, however, developers are eager to acquire his land, and perhaps the time has come for him to sell.

“I’ve always been in the horse business, but now I’m fed up with the industry,” Leonard said.

“People say I should turn the place into a zoo and charge admission,” he said with a chuckle.

Leonard bought the stables, which date from 1862, for $15,000 in 1967 when the city ran the Ville Marie Expressway eight blocks to the east, and people moved out of the neighbourhood.

He won’t say how much he wants for the property, which contains residential units, a tack house, a barn for eight horses and a small exercise corral.

“I’m not supposed to talk about anything, but, yes, agents have been coming around to talk to me about selling. We’ll see what happens,” Leonard said.

In addition to his property, he says, real estate agents are looking at a nearby scrapyard and an old paint shop next door.

Should he sell, Leonard isn’t sure what he’ll do if he no longer has horses to look after.

“I won’t go live in Florida, that’s for sure,” he said. “You’ll never catch me on a plane.”

Sunday, July 1, 2018

O Canada!



History of Canada Day
Canada’s national holiday is celebrated on July 1.

Canadians across the country and around the world show their pride in their history, culture and achievements. It’s been a day of celebration, where many festivities are held across the country, since 1868.

The Creation of Canada Day
July 1, 1867 : The British North America Act (today known as the Constitution Act, 1867) created Canada.

June 20, 1868 : Governor General Lord Monck signs a proclamation that requests all Her Majesty’s subjects across Canada to celebrate July 1.

1879 : A federal law makes July 1 a statutory holiday as the “anniversary of Confederation,” which is later called “Dominion Day.”

October 27, 1982 : July 1, “Dominion Day” officially becomes Canada Day.

The Celebrations Start
July 1, 1917 : The 50th anniversary of Confederation. The Parliament buildings, under construction, are dedicated to the Fathers of Confederation and to the courage of Canadians who fought in Europe during the First World War.

July 1, 1927 : The 60th anniversary of Confederation. The Peace Tower Carillon is inaugurated. The Governor General at the time, Viscount Willingdon, lays the cornerstone of the Confederation Building on Wellington Street.

From 1958 to 1968 : The government organizes celebrations for Canada’s national holiday every year. The Secretary of State of Canada is responsible for coordinating these activities. A typical format includes a flag ceremony in the afternoon on the lawns of Parliament Hill and a sunset ceremony in the evenings, followed by a concert of military music and fireworks.

July 1, 1967 : The 100th anniversary of Confederation. Parliament Hill is the backdrop for a high-profile ceremony, which includes the participation of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

From 1968 to 1979 (with the exception of 1976): A large multicultural celebration is presented on Parliament Hill. This concert is broadcast on television across the country. The main celebrations (called “Festival Canada”) are held in the National Capital Region throughout the month of July. These celebrations include many cultural, artistic and sport activities and involve the participation of various municipalities and volunteer associations.

From 1980 to 1983 : A new format is developed. In addition to the festivities on Parliament Hill, the national committee (the group tasked by the federal government to plan the festivities for Canada’s national holiday) starts to encourage and financially support the establishment of local celebrations across Canada. Start-up funding is provided to support popular activities and performances organized by volunteer groups in hundreds of communities. Interested organizations can make a request to the Celebrate Canada program.

1981 : Fireworks light up the sky in 15 major Canadian cities, a tradition that continues today.

1984 : The National Capital Commission (NCC) is given the mandate to organize Canada Day festivities in the capital.

2010 : Festivities on Parliament Hill receive a royal treatment when Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and His Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh join the festivities to celebrate Canada’s 143rd anniversary.

2011 : Their Royal Highnesses Prince William and Catherine, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, participate in Canada Day festivities on Parliament Hill on the occasion of Canada’s 144th anniversary.

2014 : Canadian Heritage organizes the 147th Canada Day celebrations. As we approach Canada’s 150th anniversary in 2017, the government has given the Department the mandate to organize Canada Day festivities in the capital.

2018: Happy 151st Anniversary, Canada!

Friday, June 22, 2018

Institute of the Sœurs de la Miséricorde




The Sisters of Misericorde were a religious congregation founded by Marie-Rosalie Cadron-Jetté (1794 - 1864) in Montreal, Quebec, in 1848 and was dedicated to nursing the poor and unwed mothers.

The Institute of the Sœurs de la Miséricorde reminds us of the essential role played by religious congregations in 19th-century Montreal life. The Institute holds a place of major importance in the built landscape along Rue De La Gauchetière and Boulevard René-Lévesque, in particular because of the commanding presence of its classical architecture, featuring grey stone buildings, and the tree-filled courtyards that flank the chapel.

Adoption records now open for Misericorde Hospital:Here



Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Montreal's Forgotten History

Founded in 1822, at the British and Canadian School one teacher would oversee hundreds of students, with the older students instructing the younger ones.

Modern day teachers may not approve, but it was an effective way to teach reading, writing and arithmetic to working-class children.



The rebellions of 1837-38 ended that experiment. French parents pulled their students out of the school and it was eventually absorbed by the Protestant School Board of Greater Montreal.

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Fire, Little St. James Street, Montreal, QC, 1888




During the night of 22 January 1888, a terrible fire destroyed an imposing stone building on Little St. James Street, east of Place d’Armes in Montréal. The five-storey building with a façade of 165 feet was home to different companies, including several American business firms. The New York Times hastened to report the event, characterising the drama as “one of the worst fires that had visited Montréal for many years.”


According to the article, the fire began shortly after midnight on the second floor of the building; an extremely cold night and westerly winds soon caused the water hoses to freeze, while the “firemen were quickly transformed into walking blocks of ice.” Despite the efforts of the fire brigade, the flames spread rapidly through the stairwells and explosions were heard repeatedly. The equipment inadequate, the cold intense, ”the men and horses exhausted,” the only solution was to let the fire to die out of its own accord. In the early hours of the morning, it was reported “the block is to-day covered by a solid sheet of ice.”

The photograph by Notman & Son was no doubt taken during the morning of 22 January 1888. The photographer unites the key elements of the event and succeeds, through a discerning choice of perspective, light and framing, in capturing the drama and conveying the spectacular effect and striking transformation of the building encased in ice.




Thursday, May 10, 2018

Steamboat Valleyfied


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Arrival of the Steamboat Valleyfied at St. Helen’s Island

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Friday, April 27, 2018

Bouvril Building


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Bouvril Building – 1921

Bovril Building art deco building located on the corner of Van Horne and Park Ave was built in 1921-22 by Montreal architect James Cecil McDougall for Food Specialists of Canada Limited, the manufacturers of Bovril in Canada.

In the mid 1800s, John Lawson Johnston, a Scottish butcher, having an interest in food science and preserving, experimented with heating beef trimmings, and came up with a concentrated beef stock, which had a long shelf-life. It became a favorite nourishing beef beverage for Edinburgh’s poor, as it would also have restorative and medicinal values.

Johnston emigrated to Montreal in 1863, where he set up a factory, where he developed “Johnston’s Fluid Beef”. In 1871 he went back and married Elizabeth Elliott Lawson in Edinburgh, Scotland. The couple lived there until 1875. In 1874 Johnston won a contract to produce preserved beef products for the French army of Emperor Napoleon III during the Franco-Prussian War. According to Bovril’s official history, around a million tonnes of beef product were produced, in the wake of it losing the war that year to the Prussians. In 1875, John, his wife and their first three children moved back to Canada and settled in Quebec City. There their last two children were born. He kept working on his liquid beef and re-invented it as a concentrate, which he made from beef parts leftover from the French government order of tinned beef. In 1879, John moved the business from Quebec City to Montreal. When, in 1884 his factory was destroyed by fire, he decided to move back to Europe, where he set up business in London selling his concentrate to grocery stores and pubs. In 1887 the name “Bovril” was registered, and a new brown-glass bottle was introduced. In 1895 John bought Kingswood House in Sydenham, London, and enlarged it by adding a wing and a large entrance. The Victorian mansion became known as “Bovril Castle”. The Bovril empire was sold in 1896 for £2 million. John Lawson Johnston died in 1900, but his product has survived to this day.

Food Specialists of Canada Ltd. occupied the Bovril building to 1948, when they moved and sold the building to British based Brooke Bond & Co, as a packaging plant for the Red Rose Tea factory established by Theodore Harding Estabrooks in 1894 in Saint John, New Brunswick. After Red Rose moved out in 1962, the Bovril building was home to several small businesses, mainly clothing shops. It has also been a low-rent place for artists such as painters, musicians, mimes and other various struggling artists.

Today, the building, owned by the Skver Yeshivah, houses a Hasidic Jewish primary school, library and daycare, and a non-profit artist’s cooperative with studios on the upper floors, each with their own entrance. The Bovril name has been removed, but the 1920’s industrial architecture remained intact.


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Saturday, April 21, 2018

The barbers of Saint-Hyacinthe


If there is a place of sociability at the beginning of the twentieth century, it is the barbershop where news and the latest gossip are exchanged. This photo from the CH085 Studio BJ Hébert Fund was taken in 1926. We see two barbers with their clients. Who are they?

We consulted the 1915 Saint-Hyacinthe Guide for the number of barbers in our city a little over a hundred years ago. In this guide, the population of Saint-Hyacinthe is 12,000…more


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Saturday, April 14, 2018

Great Famine Voices



Why do so many people associate Strokestown with Irish Famine and emigration? The reasons are manifold. In November 1847, at the height of the Great Famine, the landlord of Strokestown Park, Major Denis Mahon, was shot on his way home from Roscommon. Over 100 years later, Major Mahon's ancestor, Olive Parkenham Mahon, sold Strokestown Park to Jim Callery, a local businessman who needed land in the town to expand his thriving business. Although now owner of the house, Jim allowed Olive to remain resident for many years. Jim tells the story much better than I do. He can take over...more



Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Dominion Corset


In the last decades of the nineteenth century and the first decades of the twentieth century, the city of Quebec, which saw its port activities decline and shipbuilding disappear, reoriented its economy and became an important center for the production of shoes and corsets. Many factories established themselves in the populous districts of Saint-Roch and Saint-Sauveur and employed more than five thousand people in 1900.


The Dominion Corset of Georges-Élie Amyot was one of the largest corset factories in America. In 1886, Georges-Élie Amyot began making corsets. At the turn of the twentieth century, he became Quebec's largest employer and was appointed legislative counsel in 1912.
In production, the labor force has always been exclusively female and the workers have been supervised by female foremen. Factory work allowed single women to support themselves outside of marriage and religious life, but until the late 1950s, married women were prohibited from remaining in the employ of the company.
Note that corsets made in the late nineteenth century gave a size of wasp to those who wear them by means of "turns" in the form of hoops adapting to the dresses of the time. At the beginning of the 20th century, the rust-free whale refined silhouettes without over-constraining breathing. New corsets and bustiers reduced the unwanted curves of tubular fashion in the 1920s.
The arrival of synthetic fabrics made the whales disappear after the Second World War. The clientele adopts the first models of sleeves and bras. The 1950s are the golden age of the company, which launches the lines Sarong and Daisyfresh.
From Pierre Amyot in 1973, the management of the company is entrusted to Maurice Godbout.In 1977, the company adopted a new market strategy and took the name of Daisyfresh Creations. It is still sold in 1988 to the company Canadelle WonderBra, which abandons the manufacture of the lower town to settle in the industrial park of Vanier.
The decommissioned factory was finally reorganized to house the Center de développement économique et urbain (CDÉU) of Quebec City and the School of Visual Arts at Laval University.
The arrival of public servants and students in the early 1990s contributes to the revitalization of the Saint-Roch district. Its vast building, at the corner of Charest Boulevard and Dorchester Street has been restored and is occupied by services of the City of Quebec and Laval University. The ground floor, open to the public, evokes the memory of the hundreds of workers who once worked there.

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Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Great Famine Voices


Why do so many people associate Strokestown with Irish Famine and emigration? The reasons are manifold. In November 1847, at the height of the Great Famine, the landlord of Strokestown Park, Major Denis Mahon, was shot on his way home from Roscommon. Over 100 years later, Major Mahon’s ancestor, Olive Pakenham Mahon, sold Strokestown Park to Jim Callery, a local businessman who needed land in the town to expand his thriving business. Although now owner of the house, Jim allowed Olive to remain resident for many years. Jim tells the story much better than I do.He can take over…more


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Thursday, March 15, 2018

Partridge Island Quarantine Station

The Partridge Island quarantine station was designated a national historic site of Canada in 1974 because of the significant role it played in immigration to Canada, and more specifically to the Maritime Provinces, in the 19th century.


The heritage value of Partridge Island Quarantine Station National Historic Site of Canada lies in its historic role as a 19th-century quarantine station as illustrated by the site, setting and landscape of the island and the quarantine-related remains it contains. Partridge Island was one of two major quarantine stations in 19th-century Canada. 

Established in 1830 to protect Canadian citizens from contagious diseases carried by in-coming ships, the station provided treatment for immigrants and crew members who were ill, as well as purification facilities for the healthy passengers aboard the ships. This station was active during a particularly early and busy period of Canadian immigration. During 1847, 2000 Irish immigrants fleeing from the potato famine were quarantined here during a typhus epidemic. 601 of them are buried in a mass grave on the island. Passengers quarantined on this island eventually settled in New Brunswick, Upper Canada and the United States.


Partridge Island continued to be used as a quarantine station until 1941. It was occupied for the military defence of Saint John during both World Wars, and also used as a light station. All buildings on the island were demolished in 1955 and 1998-1999. Today the site contains remnants of buildings and structures associated with its important role as a 19th-century quarantine station, including those of the doctor’s residence (built ca. 1872), the 2nd class immigrants, marine officers’ and smallpox hospitals (1899-1901), a low water wharf, and a cemetery containing graves from the 1847 typhus epidemic.

Sources: Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, Minutes, May 1974, June 1983, June 1984; Commemorative Integrity Statement, March 2001.


Partridge Island continued to be used as a quarantine station until 1941. It was occupied for the military defence of Saint John during both World Wars, and also used as a light station. All buildings on the island were demolished in 1955 and 1998-1999. Today the site contains remnants of buildings and structures associated with its important role as a 19th-century quarantine station, including those of the doctor’s residence (built ca. 1872), the 2nd class immigrants, marine officers’ and smallpox hospitals (1899-1901), a low water wharf, and a cemetery containing graves from the 1847 typhus epidemic.


 
  

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Partridge Island, N.B.


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The Celtic Cross Memorial


Partridge Island is a Canadian island located in the Bay of Fundy off the coast of Saint John, New Brunswick within the city's Inner Harbour.

The island is a provincial historic site and was designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 1974. It lies on the west side of the mouth of the Saint John River
Partridge Island was first established as a quarantine station and pest house in 1785 by the Saint John Royal Charter, which also set aside the island for use as a navigational aids station and a military post. Its first use as a Quarantine Station was not until 1816. A hospital was constructed on the island in 1830.

It received its largest influx of immigrants in the 1840's during the Great Famine, known as the "Irish Potato Famine", when a shortage of potatoes occurred because of potato blight striking Ireland's staple crop, causing millions to starve to death or otherwise emigrate, mainly to North America. During the famine, some 30,000 immigrants were processed by the island's visiting and resident physicians, with 1196 dying at Partridge Island and the adjacent city of Saint John during the Typhus epidemic of 1847. During the 1890's there were over 78,000 immigrants a year being examined or treated on the island.

A memorial to the Irish immigrants of the mid-1840's was set up on the island in the 1890's but by World War One it had deteriorated. In 1926 the Saint John City Cornet Band approached Saint John contractor George McArthur who agreed to lead a campaign to build a suitable monument. The Celtic Cross memorial to the Irish dead of 1847 was dedicated in 1927. 

This was restored and rededicated in 1985. In the early and mid-1980's the Saint John Jewish Community, the Loyal Orange Lodge, the Partridge Island Research Project, and the Partridge Island & Harbour Heritage Inc., a company that was registered in 1988 and dissolved in 2004 erected memorials to the Protestant, Catholic and Jewish immigrants buried in one of the six island graveyards, as well as a monument to all of the Irish dead from 1830 to the 1920's.

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Monday, February 19, 2018

Rootstech


Rootstech starts February 28 - March 3, 2018


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Thursday, February 8, 2018

SS Ramore Head


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This postcard of the SS Ramore Head was found in my Uncle George Bernards possessions after his death. He was a Merchant Seaman and sailed around the world. I don’t know if he ever traveled aboard the SS Ramore Head but I do know he visited Dublin.

The SS Ramore Head was a general cargo ship built between 1940 and 1949. In June 1967, she was almost at the end of her life for owners Ulster S.S.Co. of Belfast. Sold and renamed Xerxes II the following year. Then sold the same year to be broken up. Arrived at Valencia, Spain on Dec. 14.1968


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courtesy Ship Spotting.com


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Thursday, January 25, 2018

Friday, January 12, 2018

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Maple Stars and Stripes – Filles a Marier


Please subscribe to Maple Stars and Stripes Your French-Canadian Genealogy Podcast by Sandra Goodwin, podcast for this month is Filles a Marier


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