Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Day 119: Maison LeBer-LeMoyne


Day 119: Maison LeBer-LeMoyne, originally uploaded by susanvg.

Montreal is a mix of old and new. Like many cities, some of our heritage has been lost to new developments, but we are getting a little better at preserving our history. This old house, now part of a small museum is thought to be the oldest intact building on the island. The house was built in 1669 (about 25 years after Montreal was founded) and housed the oldest fur trading post in Lachine (a suburb of Montreal). The fur traders set out from here and not Montreal because it was past the Lachine rapids which were not navigable by boat. Now a museum, the house was built on land bought from René-Robert Cavelier de LaSalle, the first Seigneur in this area (better known as an explorer) to house the employees of LeBer and Le Moyne.

I try to imagine it at the time it was built. There were certainly no electric or telephone wires! It was surrounded by dense forest, facing the river. A small colony grew up around the fur trade as the coureurs des bois needed provisions and the traders needed a place for their goods. The steep roof was built that way so snow could not accumulate. Even today there are occasional roof cave-ins in modern buildings because people do not clear the snow off them. But it is no longer winter and my thoughts are on the beautiful spring weather.

2 comments:

  1. What a neat share! Many times our group photos offer so much more than the visual image - a reflection, a piece of history, a travel 'postcard'! Thanks!

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  2. Nice, this house could easily be found in Chester County here in PA! The stone structure is similar.

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