Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Historic Quebec-July 21
Today we started on a driving tour to understand the history of Quebec,again following a guide book. We went into the older part and saw the parliamentary buildings. In one area part of the old city wall forms an arch over the street and near this site there are the busts of our president FDR and England's prime ministerWinston Churchill. They met here in Quebec in 1943 and 1944. I have a picture of that here. We next visited the St.Augustine Hospital,founded in 1693. During the seven year war between France and England(1754-1761)many wounded men were cared for by the nuns of St.Augustine at this hospital. Over time the cemetery next to it became the burying ground for the military. About 1058 soldiers were buried here-French,Canadians,Americans and British. I have posted here a monument that stands in this cemetery. It seems to be that of two soldiers reaching out to each other over a cracked wall. From here we went to the historic district of Trait Carre. It is an area that use to be a rural village(dating from 1665),but after 1937 it became an urban area of Quebec city. It still has the original mill(now museum),church and convent,and one farm. The family of the original owner still owns the farm. The lots in the district were laid out in the form of a star,converging in a central point,where the early colonists lived.The landowners were Jesuit priests who designed the lay out as a means of defending the colony. We did a walking tour of only a small part of this area as it was quite sunny and warm. Many of the original homes have been restored and well maintained. It was interesting to see the different French and Quebec architecture representative of the rural areas from the 17th to the 19th centuries.I have posted a picture of one of these houses here. An added bonus in walking around this area was seeing the beautiful lush green grass and flowering gardens found in the lawns and parks! After having our picnic lunch here we went on to the Huron cultural center. I may discuss that on another posting. It ended up being a long day for us,but we were still determined to see the national park of Jacques Cartier located north of Quebec. Our day seemed complete to us after that because at that park we saw moose drinking at the edge of a river! Unfortunately it was getting dark at the time so the picture I took did not turn out well at all.