Gilliandr's Blog

Random Historical, Social and Cultural Moments



24th of May, Montreal, 1877

Montreal Gazette, 23 May 1877, page 3


The Queen, God Bless Her- What to do, where to go, and how to celebrate on Her Birthday – in the city and out of the city

With the sweep of time the Queen’s Birthday comes again and will be, as it has always been, welcomed right loyally throughout the Dominion, but in no place with more spontaneity than in our own city.  The Mayor has issued the proclamation for a general holiday, and the question now on the tongue of everyone is, “where to go on the 24th?” Below we give a few of the principal events.


Grand Lacrosse Match at 3pm, between the Montreal Club and Indians, at which the Band of the Victoria Rifles will attend.

Academy of Musicat 2:30, and evening performance at 8.

St George’s Concert at the Rink at 8pm.

Sig Hazazer’s Assembly.  Closing party of the season.

Volunteer Review in the forenoon at Fletcher’s Field, on the Mountain slope.,

The Island Park ferry boat will ply all day, leaving Island Wharf every half hour.


On the Grand Trunk Railway to St Hilaire, leaving Bonaventure Station at 8am, and returning at a seasonable hour in the evening. Passes will be issued on the Grand Trunk Railway on the 24th good for the next day at one fare, and good until the 28th at one fare and a third.

On the South Eastern, tickets good for the 23rd, 24th and 25th inclusive, will be sold at one fare to Memphremagog, and a steam yacht conveys parties from Newport to any point on the Lake.

The steamer Prince of Wales leaves Lachine for Carillon and intermediate landings on the arrival of the 7 am train which leaves Bonaventure Depot, returning in time for the evening train.

Excursion of the Natural History Society to Oka.

Grand excursion to St Jerome,leaving Hochelaga at 8:50am; returning, leave St Jerome at 6pm.

Trotting races at Laprairie, the steamer making three trips during the day.

Excursion to Cornwall on the Grand Trunk Railway; tickets good for two days $1, the band of the Sixth Fusiliers to be present.

Grand excursion to Caughnawaga as per advertisement.


Walter Scott Centenary, Montreal, 1871

Globe, 16 August 1871, page 4


Montreal, Aug 15

A private banquet was given to-night on temperance principals, as the Carlton Club, in commemoration of the Scott Centenary.  Between sixty and seventy person were present.  Addresses were delivered, but the affair was quiet, as it was resolved a month since to let the day pass, all the principal citizens being out of the city.  The Scott scholarship subscription progresses rapidly, and of the requisite $1500, $1000 is already raised.

[Oh Lord this sounds desperately dull!]

Situating Sarsfield – part of a larger picture, 2018

Chateau from hotel website – 1169 is on the left of the screen.

When I visit Montreal, which is quite frequently, I like to take advantage of the overnight to visit places of familial significance.  This includes old family homes, businesses, or cemeteries. The streets are marked by the presence of the various lines of my family, although most are silent to the public at large.  One of the benefits of being a historian is the fact that I have been able to research and pinpoint these places, and understand their larger significance to family and place.

One of the places I do like to visit is the Chateau Versailles Hotel on Sherbrooke Street.  It all depends of course on if there is a good deal available.  The hotel is a series of four elegant townhouses, and is a bit fancy.  Part of this block, 1669 was also the home of my great-great uncle Sarsfield Cuddy.

Sarsfield Ludger Emmett Cuddy

I have been lucky enough to be able to stay in the “Cuddy” part of the hotel twice now, and when I have found out that my room was in 1669 have expressed my joy to a rather perplexed staff.  You see to them this is the Berthier part of the building.

The hotel does, to a limited extent, commemorate its history.  In the main floor corridor of 1669 the hotel has placed some photographs of the Berthier sisters with a bit of text speaking to their 25 year residence in the building from 1942, when they purchased the home from the original owners – the Cuddys.  Along with the photograph and small history of the Berthier sisters’ haute couture dressmaking business run from this location, there is also an old sewing machine.  A formal photograph of Narcisse Perodeau also graces the same area.  He was a successful politician, notary and businessman.  He was Quebec Lieutenant Governor from 1924 to 1928.  He lived in 1659.

Commemoration of the buildings’ past is rather selective, and in this case, a shame, as all four buildings were homes to very interesting families over the course of a hundred years. I am sure that in reading this you are thinking that I am only saying this because they left Sarsfield and his family out of the narrative.  And you would be partially correct – yeah, it ticks me off a bit that he is not considered interesting enough to merit inclusion in the history of a home he lived in for over thirty years, and whose direction  as original owner dictated a great many of the exterior details which still distinguish the building from its neighbours. But here is the thing, these four buildings are more than just about Sarsfield Cuddy.

These four houses, constructed during the height of the ‘Great Square Mile’, when Sherbrooke Street was lined with large and luxurious housing.  These houses were built to impress, and provide its residents with a great style of living. The houses were built by architect and developer James Seath-Smith starting in 1911.  He lived in 1657 until 1935, and also owned 1671. 1659 was purchased by Narcisse Peradeau, whose daughter Yvonne was married to Sarsfield’s brother-in-law Frank McKenna.  A history of the hotel, written in 1979, goes into great detail about how so many of the buildings’ residents were interconnected, living and working in close proximity.


La Presse, 18 juillet 1902 p7

It is also interesting to note that when some of the people moved to smaller premises they did not move that far away.  Peradeau sold his house in 1928 to Lady Hermine LeBlanc (his son’s mother-in-law) and moved to the Chateau Apartments at 1321 Sherbrooke Street.  Sarsfield’s widow Estelle McKenna sold their home in 1942 and moved to the same building with her daughter Lorraine.  Sarsfield’s two sisters Teresa and Honora only lived a block away in the Linton Apartments at 1509 Sherbrooke Street.

It is from the late 1930s that the neighbourhood started to change from this elegant single family living to that of a more business oriented residence – with the buildings being used as both home and business.  The Berthier sisters lived above their fancy dressmaking business, from 1942; and Perodeau’s home and its immediate neighbour became a hotel and the house on the other side of the Cuddy house became a gentleman’s club.  And now the whole block is a hotel offering a taste of the elegance and luxury enjoyed by the original owners.

Please read my biography of Sarsfield here.


Hotel Chateau Versailles: a history, Betty Guernsey, Hotel Chateau Versailles, 1979

Montreal’s Sherbrooke Street: the spine of the city, Mackay L Smith, Infinite Books, 2006

Dictionary of Family Biography – Sarsfield Ludger Emmett Cuddy (Jan 2016)

The Benefits of Cricket, Montreal, 1822

Montreal Herald, 29 May 1822, page 2

To the Editor of the Montreal Herald


On reading the Paragraph upon Cricket in your supplement of last Wednesday, it gave rise to the following reflections:

That I perfectly agree with the Author, that the game of Cricket is conductive to health, and peculiarly adapted to youth, especially those leading a sedentary life; as it expands the chest, opens a free passage of breathing, promotes perspiration without endangering the system, and puts the whole muscular frame in motion, unattended with the least violence.

It has also much to that manly vigour and firm step as remarkable in an Englishman.

As a further illustration, look to our Mother Country there is scarcely a noble man who has not been trained to Cricket in his youth – can there even be a stronger proof in favour of the game, when every Boarding school establishment considers it a necessary appendage to have a play ground for the youth to be exercised at Cricket.

It is a pity town cannot offer a better spot than at the Wind-mills which is so much exposed; but as the gentlemen forming the Club take infinite pains in rotting it &c it is hoped our good citizens will assist by directing their servants not to ride or drive over the Play ground.

I hope to see next year, amongst the general importations, Bats and Balls introduced.

I am sir,

Your Obedient

A Byestander

Yvette McKenna – presented at court, 1927

Montreal Daily Star, 18 June 1927, page 2


Presented at Court.

Mrs Frank McKenna, daughter of Hon Narcisse Perodeau, Lieutenant Governor of this Province and daughter, Miss Yvette McKenna, wearing the gowns in which they were presented to their Majesties’ Court May 23.  They have just returned from spending some time abroad and [illegible] returning to Spencer Wood, Quebec for the summer.

Galt Caledonian Games, 1882

Alloa Advertiser 2 Sep 1882 p3

Caledonian Games at Galt, Ont

The fourth annual games of the Galt Caledonian Society came off on the 10th August, and were very successful, although the weather was rather unsettled.  The competitions were far above the average and created great interest.  Donald Dinnie, of course, carried everything before him in the heavy weight contests, but the other athletes made good records, as the following abstract of the prize list shows: –

Putting heavy stone, 21 lbs – 1. Donald Dinnie, 37 ft 6 in; 2 Archibald Scott, Brussells, 35 ft 8 in; 3 M Macdonald, Toronto, 32 ft.

Running High Jump 1 A Scott, 5 ft, 5 in; 2 A Watson, Ratho, 5 ft 3 in; 3 M Macdonald 5 ft

Strathspeys and Reels – 1 H Henderson, Alliston; 2 John Monroe Buffalo, 3 Donald Dinnie

Putting light stone -1 Donald Dinnie 45 ft 2 in; 2 A Scott, 41 ft; 3 M Macdonald 40ft 6 in

Throwing heavy hammer – 1 Donald Dinnie 100 ft 3 in; 3 M Macdonald 89 ft 5 in; 3 A Scott 102 ft 3 in

Tossing caber – 1 Donald Dinnie 38 ft 5 in; M Macdonald 36 ft 10 in; 3 T Shields 34 ft 10 in

Reel of Tulloch – 1 John Munroe; 2 H Henderson; 3 Donald Dinnie

Best dressed Highlander – Dr M Michael, Buffalo.

Sword dance 1 H Henderson; 2 John Munroe

Best Piper, march and quicksteps – Smith and Munroe, equal.

Highland Fling – 1 H Henderson; 2 Donald Dinnie

Best pibroch player – G Smith

Desperados in Summerstown, 1889

The Glengarrian, 20 Dec 1889


The arrest of the ringleaders in the gang of desperados that has made life hardly worth living for the past year, has not entirely put a stop the deviltry that has gone on for so long.  On Friday evening, between 6 and 7 o’clock two men broke into the cheese factory.  Two citizens heard the noise and started to see what was the matter, but being afraid of being fired on, did not approach close.  The burglars went away without doing any further damage than smashing windows and a few utensils, the damage being estimated by Mr McLeod, agenda for Mr DM Macpherson, cheese king, at $10. There was no apparent motive for the outrage, as there was nothing of value in the factory.  Mr Macpherson is away from home at present, but as the parties are known, he will take steps to send them up soon as he returns.

Calling all Paulin(e)s and Paulin(e) descendants! Reunion 2019

Mary and Frederick Pauline at Tod House, circa 1892, c. BC Archives.


I have decided to do it!  I am putting out a call for all descendants of Frederick and Mary Paulin(e) to assembly in July 2019 in Victoria, BC.

Exact details are yet to be worked out, including specific dates in July, but I am hoping that many will be interested in coming to BC, and seeing the place where the family lived for so many years, and meeting up with all of the various cousins.  I am asking that all who are interested in attending to please contact me so I can go about organising some events, notably a gathering at the Tod House to recreate the family photo from 1892 of the gang on the porch, also a dinner or BBQ depending on numbers, and tours of the Oak Bay area, and maybe the legislature.

Children of Frederick and Mary Paulin(e)

  • Louise Mary Paulin


  • Frederick Arthur Paulin


  • George Pauline


  • Ernest Alfred Paulin


  • Herbert William Pauline


  • Bessie Pauline


  • Amy Pauline


  • Florence Pauline


  • Violet Pauline


  • Sarah Pauline


  • Marion Pauline


  • John Albert Pauline


  • Nellie Pauline



So please contact me, and tell me if you are interested….






R Daft’s Cricket Tour of Canada, 1879

Sporting Life, 24 Sep 1879, p 1

R Daft’s Cricket Tour in Canada and the United States

(By our special correspondent)

Toronto, September 12

After touching on Saturday, the 6th instant, at Rimouski, on the southern bank of the St Lawrence, we steamed rapidly down the river, and reached Quebec on Sunday morning at half-past seven.  As we had some hours at our disposal several of us, including Emmett, Bates, and myself, crossed the St Lawrence, and had a look at Quebec.  The town is not well built, and except in the more aristocratic parts did not seem to be very desirable place to live in.  The monument to General Wolfe we regarded with interest.  The view down the river from the heights of Abraham was very fine, and one wondered, standing in this apparently impregnable position, how Wolfe and his army succeeded.  By one o’clock we had taken our places for Montreal, and passing through a fine country, in which the harvest was over, we reached that city at quarter past eleven on Sunday evening.  We put up at the Windsor Hotel, one of the finest in the world. The dining room itself would hold an entire decent sized English hotel, the staircases are of marble, and the upholstery & c of the most finished description. After breakfast, Orcroft and I had a look at the Montreal Cricket Grounds, and found it small, but in good order. La Crosse is the popular game about Montreal, cricket being in greater favour at Toronto, where there are less French.  We should have played at Montreal first had not the Toronto fixture been made at a date when there were great gatherings expected in that city, owing to there being a great exhibition, review of the troops by the Governor General and the Princess Louise &c.  On Monday the 8th we reached Toronto at elevent in the evening, and found the place so crammed with visitors that it was difficult to find us accomadation.  The Walker Hotel where we stayed ,was very crowded, beds being made up in the billiard room and in the passages.  The city was brilliantly illumintated in honour of the Governor and the Princess, who are expected to be present at our first match, which commences on Wednesday morning.

Our men went to the Toronto Cricket Ground on Tuesday morning to have some practice.  They had scarcely go their land legs, and the play was somewhat loose; Shrewsbury, Selby and Bates were in good form, however, Alfred Shaw with the ball.  The ground is in fine order, and we shall have a good wicket.

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