Tuesday, July 27, 2010


The stagecoach had a close connection with the ferry and navigation as the river was also part of the method of transporatation in the 19th and early 20th century as is illustrated in the top 1910 photo of the "Richelieu" ferry unloading the farmers at Quai La Tortue (Torchy Wharf) in Laprairie returning from the markets in Montreal.The lower undated photo probably from the 30s is the "St Louis" ferry-boat tied up at the foot of second avenue also called the Leblanc wharf. Horses where still around in the 30s and 40s delivering milk, bread and ice and us old-timers still remember that era.

Monday, July 26, 2010


Ever wonder how people got around before the automobile was invented, that's right by stagecoach on the dirt roads all around the world. The top scene could very well have been on LaSalle boulevard, previously named at various times in the past:

Chemin LaSalle

 Lower Lachine Road

Côte à Penniston

Côte des Argoulets

Chemin de la Rivière St Pierre

Of course. LaSalle boulevard was an Indian trail prior to the arrival of the white man and even during the the beginning of colonisation. We where all fascinated by the Hollywood cowboy movies such as John Wayne on a stagecoach being attaked by a group of indians (Stagecoach 1939). There may even have been similar scenes acting out on LaSalle boulevard, perhaps not so dramatically, nevertheless, with a bit of imagination, we can imagine such a scenario.


Source: Histoire Québec, Volume 16, Number 1, 2010 (SHGV)

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Race Track in LaSalle


These photos are from Denis Gravel's book "Histoire du Village des Rapides" wich shows the race track that exhisted in LaSalle starting from WW2 and the outline was still visible in the 1958 aerial view in the center of the photo and was situated between the golf course and 9th avenue.  Another bit of history is that the The Bronx wich was originally named by New York buisinessmen was changed in 1984 to "Village des Rapides".



Sunday, July 18, 2010

LaSalle Hydroelectric Dam - More Photos

Here are three more photos of the LaSalle Dam wich I have added to my no. 38 Album.



Interesting viewpoint------You Decide

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Saint Catherine Street -------revisited

          For two days Montreal's Saint Catherine Street will be closed to vehicular traffic, & will become a Pedestrian Only walking outdoor mall with displays & I'm sure buskers too....What a great opportunity for Our Montreal area members to get out and about & be able to wander around taking in all the buildings & people ,without the worry of being hit by a speeding cab.bus copcar etc etc ......  Sounds like a good time to get out and Have Fun .........maybe some of you will be adventurous enough to take some photos of whatever catches your eye,....then share the pictures here, i know if I was there I'd be having aball taking pics & maybe haveing a cool one at an outdoor patio at some local Bistro..................   Hope some of you take it in. I am using (with her permission,one of Carole Spandau's steet paintings of Saint Catherine, who knows may Carole will be out there somewhere capturing another Montreal Moment too.


MONTREAL - Ste. Catherine St. will become a four-kilometre pedestrian mall from St. Marc St. to Papineau Ave. on Saturday and Sunday, the city of Montreal has announced.

Montrealers are invited to take a stroll down Ste. Catherine St. this weekend to appreciate, without the presence of cars, the varied architecture lining the street as well as the colourful neighbourhoods they pass through, Mayor Gérald Tremblay said Thursday in a news release.

The two-day pedestrian mall initiative will feature mural displays, in-line skating demonstrations, live music and dance shows, outdoor terraces and graffiti contests.

The project coincides with the annual downtown sidewalk sale between St. Marc and Bleury Sts.

..............I think Verdun usually closes down Wellington in some fashion as well,for street sales etc etc ................  Take some pics ,we'd love to see them   -HF&RV-

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Traffic Woes will continue for L'Acadie (only when it rains,cause they can't figure it out) lol

          Well the engineering braintrust that is Montreal's roads design bunch ,can't figure out why it floods when it rains....Yikes & they admit this ...hahahaha despite spending $10 Million on the same spot just a few years ago. Psssssst here's a hint ,check the drains.....No Charge for that info.but the next time your spending $10 Million ,send me a enveloppe with some brownies in them please,afterall that's the way it's done isn't it.                      MONTREAL - If you're planning to use L'Acadie interchange while a heavy rain warning is in effect, the city of Montreal and Transport Quebec have a message for you: Be prepared to turn around.

The half-century-old interchange, rebuilt in 2004 for $110 million, has been the scene of at least five floodings in as many years. Its tendency to flood has led the two levels of government that administer its drainage system to occasionally suggest the other isn't pulling its weight when it comes keeping the overflow under control.

But now, after heavy rain last Friday forced the closure of two of the interchange's access lanes, Quebec and Montreal have decided to work together to survey the drainage systems on L'Acadie and its surrounding road network.

They've budgeted three months to complete the survey -which will see any findings come well after this year's flash-flood season.

In the meantime, however, the bureaucracies in charge of L'Acadie's highway lanes (Transport Quebec) and its service roads and access ramps (the city of Montreal) have decided to co-operate to make sure that if the flooding can't be stopped this summer, the odds on cars being trapped have to be reduced.

"The city and (Transport Quebec) are equipped ... to track the weather at all times," reads a communique sent this week to The Gazette by Montreal city hall. "When an unusual weather system reveals itself ... (Transport Quebec) and the city will pay particular attention to crucial sectors (of the road network) such as the L'Acadie interchange.

"From the moment flooding of the lanes is noticed, (Transport Quebec personnel) will initiate the shutdown of lanes ... (and) proceed to detour traffic."

The city sent the statement to The Gazette on Monday, in lieu of a requested interview with Richard Deschamps, Montreal executive committee member responsible for infrastructure. Earlier that day, 98.5 FM morning show host Paul Arcand gave Deschamps a rough ride, asking repeatedly why, after five years and a $110 million overhaul, L'Acadie's service roads continued to flood.

Transport Quebec spokesperson Real Gregoire acknowledged this week that the province had taken steps to reduce the threat of flooding on the lanes of the interchange itself. They included sealing the holes in manhole covers and installing traps on sewers to prevent overflow from seeping onto the road surface. But he stressed that whatever measures the province had taken on its own to make L'Acadie an all-weather thoroughfare, Quebec and Montreal were now working together to solve its problems.

"The dynamic is different now," he said, "It's not because we took those measures and the city didn't that the city should be perceived as having dragged its feet."

Meanwhile, the priority will be to ensure the safety of motorists using it during a heavy rainstorm.

"We'll shut down flooded lanes, wait until they drain, and then reopen them," Gregoire said. "We all know there's a problem on the L'Acadie, what we have to do is find that problem and ... find a solution."

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Dr Norman Bethune

Here are a couple of photos on Dr Norman Bethune wich I have added to my Album no. 49. The top one is a recent photo of a statue on the corner of Guy and De Maisonneuve and the second one is on the Mount Royal probably in the early 30s. As I have previously mentioned, Bethune had a connection with Verdun having kept a clinic in the 30s at the YMCA on Gordon. I have tried to find out exactly when Bethune actually held his clinic in Verdun by calling the YMCA head office in Montreal. They were supposed to get back to me but never did. I also went through all the Guardians from the 30s in our archives (SHGV) without success. However, there is no doubt that he did have his clinic in Verdun possibly in 1934 as confirmed by the NFB film wich is on their site. The exibition on Bethune at the Museum on Youville square is on till August.


LaSalle Hydroelectric Dam

I have found 2 more photos of the Hydroelectric Dam while doing research at our local Pierrefonds library wich I have added to my album no. 38 wich now totals 25 photos on the dam. The dam was completed in 1896 and discontinued operation in 1931. Us old timers remember playing in that area wich is now a bird sanctuary.


Seaway Closed as CSL ship Runs Aground

  more Oil, Oh Well , a Canada Steamship Lines ship ran aground forcing the authoities to close the Seaway temporarily until they clean up some oil spill, They should be able to milk this for a few bucks somehow,                    MONTREAL - An oil leak forced the closure of a section of the St. Lawrence Seaway on Monday night.

Crews were still working to clean up the mess Tuesday morning after a Canada Steamship Lines vessel ran aground near the Côte Sainte-Catherine lock, just south of Montreal, around 7:30 p.m. Monday.

The ship's fuel tank was reportedly punctured in the accident, allowing between 50 and 200 tonnes of oil to leak into the surrounding waters before the tank could be sealed. The spill covered an area about 500 metres by 500 metres.

"The leak has now been completely contained," said Andrew Bogora, communications officer for the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation. "The Sainte-Catherine lock has also been sealed, so water is no longer running through the area, which ensures that the spill remains in place."

Officials with Environment Canada, the Canadian Coast Guard and Quebec civil authorities were on the scene Tuesday morning to monitor the ongoing cleanup effort. SIMEC, a private firm specializing in environmental remediation, was called in to mop up the spill, Bogora said.

Nearby communities were also advised to check their water filtration facilities for any signs of oil contamination.

"The Ministry of Sustainable Development, Environment and Parks will continue to follow this situation with its partners to assure that all necessary steps are taken to contain this spill," said a release issued by the provincial government Tuesday morning.

It is still unclear why the ship ran aground in the seaway, Bogora said.

"The ship did lose power and drifted out of the navigation channel," he said. "As to why it lost power, we still don't have that information."

The affected area of the seaway will remain closed to all water traffic until at least tomorrow, Bogora added, and the cleanup could continue for several days.

Canada Steamship Lines, at one time owned by former prime minister Paul Martin, is Canada's largest maritime shipping company. Martin passed the company to his sons in 2003.

More to come.                  ..( I wonder if they mean 'more to come' as in oil......lol)

Steinbrenner checks out @ 80

           Owner of the winningest (championship wise) sports franchise in all sports...... Owner of those 'Dam Yankees' dies at 80 ......money can't buy everything I guess. Apparently as hard nosed as he came across,he donated quietly to various charity's and also could laugh at himself,as evidenced on SNL as a guest host.....

  Back in the 70's and early 80's there was an old saying that ,'There were 3 things in life you Never bet Against :                                            1: Muhammad Ali

                                                                             2: The Montreal Canadiens

                                                                             3:  and the New York Yankees

            .he croaked from a massive heart attack this morning:


New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner died on Tuesday morning after suffering a heart attack.

The Steinbrenner family confirmed his death in a statement issued by the Yankees. He was 80 years old.

Steinbrenner, one of the most colourful owners in professional sports, has owned the Major League Baseball franchise since 1973.

According to WABC, he was taken to St. Joseph's hospital in Tampa, Fla, on Monday night, and died early Tuesday morning.

During his first 23 seasons of ownership, the Yankees went through 20 managers, including Steinbrenner's infamous love-hate relationship with Billy Martin, who resigned or was fired five times.

Steinbrenner's sons Hal and Hank took over the day-to-day operations of the Yankees in 2007. Under Steinbrenner's ownership, the Yankees have won 11 pennants and the World Series seven times.

Steinbrenner, who was born in Rocky River, Ohio, spent most of his later years at his home in Tampa.

He had been in ailing health in recent years, but the team and family kept him sheltered from the media. During his rare public appearances, he appeared to be confined to a wheelchair.

According to Forbes magazine, his net worth was more than $1 billion US.

................................................................see ya George...                  HF&RV

Friday, July 9, 2010

.......Its " Raining Its " Pouring and the oldman is snoring

        I used to love trhese great Montreal Thunderstorms , with incredible burst of Thunder rolling across the sky, and the Lightning Bolts cracking through the air.....that was great stuff,.and the fresh smell after a rainfall,   also the rain bouncing 3 feet off the pavement,Remember you would see the black cloud coming for blocks & you would make a beeline to the nearest doorway or storefront,to take temporary cover as the rain poured down..... Well Montreal after baking in the extreme heat this past week or so ,with temps in the High 30's and the humidity making it feel like it was 40+ celsius,.a little relief has come to Montreal in the form of my favourite rain storms,.cooling off the city in one burst......Love that.

MONTREAL- A wall collapsed at a restaurant in the Plateau Friday after severe thunderstorms hit Montreal.

The wall collapsed at Il Pagliaccio around 1 p.m. Friday afternoon at 365 Laurier Ave. E.

Firefighters are on the scene and so far no injuries have been reported.

Environment Canada has issued severe thunderstorm warnings for Montreal and the surrounding area. The thunderstorm line is moving eastward at 35 km/h. The warning is in effect until 4:30 p.m. Friday afternoon.

The storm comes after a four-day heat wave in Montreal. According to Environment Canada updated their weather warning, which initially said that temperatures would cool after the storm had passed, saying "a warm and very humid airmass will remain over these regions until this evening making conditions very uncomfortable."

The thunderstorms that have developed may become more severe Friday evening over the southern areas of the Quebec.

Montreal firefighters have been called back to their stations in preparation for possible floodings.

On July 14 1987, several parts of Montreal flooded when thunderstorms struck, also after several days of over 30°C temperatures.

                           ..Have Fun & Remember Verdun
            Living on the We_t coast I've seen my share of rainstorms & then some,but I still miss those sudden wild & furious Montreal Storms with Fork Lightning & Cracking Thunder that would rattle your insides.......................

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Scotty Bowman

I have posted an article on Scotty Bowman wich appears in the Messager site at:

http://www.messagerverdun.com/ Section: Société - Histoire de Verdun.

I have also sent them an english version wich I hope will be posted soon in the TOP STORIES section most likely.

My article is a short biography on Scotty Bowman in wich I suggest that the City of Verdun name the Auditorium the Scotty Bowman Auditorium.

Coincidently, I discovered that Bob Dubois of the Messager also suggested the same thing in his article of the 19th of March 2009 as shown below. If enough people put pressure on the city, this may have a snowball effect, who knows ?



Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Maynard Ferguson Park

I just discovered on the late that Nun's Island named a park after Maynard Ferguson as shown in the Suburban article of 2009.


Before Radar

How's this for progress:


Monday, July 5, 2010

BP beeds your help...............(that's the set up line)

                            Seems the nice people at BP are getting nervous, I suspect they (BP) will cease to exist as BP and become part of another company & will continue on business as usual,after probably staging a Bankruptcy or Takeover deal where they pump a few Billion into clean up services (which will take decades most likely) then they will leave Uncle Sam on the hook for the real tab.  however we will see I guess, The beaches for the 4th of July weekend were empty of people who are avoiding the area,too bad a lot of small business's will be devastated & jobs will be lost & in some cases their family livelihoods too LONDON/KUWAIT - Shareholders in British oil company BP balked at reports it would seek urgent investment from a wealthy Middle East or Asian country as clean-up costs for its U.S. oil spill topped $3 billion.

Over the weekend, while U.S. Independence Day holidaymakers shunned Gulf of Mexico beaches tarred by the leaking well, media reports said BP was looking for a strategic investor among the sovereign wealth funds of the Middle East and Asia.

An investor would help ward off a takeover and raise funds for the liabilities racking up behind the worst oil spill in U.S. history, the reports said.

BP shares rose 4.35 per cent in London to 336.95 pence at 1345 GMT after the reports, but some shareholders balked at the idea of a strategic investor.

"We don't think a strategic partner is at all necessary," said one top-10 BP shareholder who did not want to be named. "We think this is just people trying to panic the company and stampede into doing something to earn huge fees from selling new shares in BP. Shareholders will be saying 'No, thank you' to this and we have communicated this to the company."

Another top-10 investor agreed that BP "probably did not" need a strategic investor at the moment.

Britain's Sunday Times said BP's advisers were trying to drum up interest among rival oil groups and sovereign wealth funds to take a stake of between 5 and 10 per cent in the company at a cost of up to 6 billion pounds ($9.1 billion). BP declined to comment.

One former investment director at a Dubai-based state investment company said it was a predictable move for BP to seek a strategic investor, but he doubted it would find one among the oil rich sovereign wealth funds (SWFs) of the Middle East.

A London banker said any SWF involvement might more likely involve the Far East than the Middle East.

Separately, several newspapers reported interest among SWFs in buying some of BP's assets in the Middle East and Asia. BP has said it hopes to raise $10 billion from asset sales this year as part of its plan to fund a $20 billion clean-up fund set up under pressure from U.S. authorities.

Arabic language daily al-Jarida was most specific, saying state-run Kuwait Foreign Petroleum Exploration Co (KUFPEC) is reviewing investing in oil fields in Egypt, Yemen and east Asia.

BP shares have lost more than half their market value since the worst U.S. oil spill in history struck on April 20, the result of an explosion on a drilling rig that caused a well to rupture and spew millions of gallons of crude into the sea.

Attempts to stop the flow have been unsuccessful, with BP now pinning hopes on a relief well that should be complete in August.


Some oil is being captured through a pipe, while some is being burned off. BP said it collected or burned 25,195 barrels on Saturday but estimates of the total amount flowing go as high as 100,000 barrels a day.

BP said on Monday it had so far spent $3.12 billion on the response effort, including $147 million paid out in claims to those affected by the disaster. Plans are being developed for additional containment capacity, it said.

Skimmer vessels have been out in force — a fleet of 89 was watched returning from their efforts through Biloxi Bay channel on Sunday — but the hurricane season has hampered efforts and high seas were preventing most from operating.

A super tanker adapted to scoop oily water from the surface was still being tested by Coastguard officials just north of the well site, said Bob Grantham, spokesman for TMT Shipping Offshore, which operates the vessel, named "A Whale."

"Once the effects of Hurricane Alex on wave action have sufficiently passed, we will be able to test skimming operations with an important boom system deployed to draw and direct more oily water in the direction of the A Whale's intake jaws," Grantham said.

TMT hopes that once the ship has passed the test it will secure a skimming contract that could enhance the total capacity of the containment operation to remove oil pollution from the water.

The impact on the Gulf of Mexico tourist industry was evident on Sunday, the 76th day of the disaster, as dozens of workers picked up tar balls along Pensacola Beach.

"It's . . . sad to see the beach is not as crowded as it normally is, there's not as many people here. Not as many people in the restaurants. Very sad because you know they need the business," said Derek Robbins, a tourist from Houston who has been coming to Pensacola every year for decades.

The Sunday Telegraph reported that BP was facing fresh criticism over its approach to safety as it emerged it did not use an industry standard process, known as a safety case, to assess risk at the Deepwater Horizon rig.

A BP spokeswoman confirmed that it did not use the procedure, developed in Britain after the Piper Alpha oil rig explosion in 1988, at any of its U.S. wells because it was not legally required to do so in the United States.

A federal court last week lifted a six-month drilling ban imposed by the Obama administration. A new moratorium now being sought through the courts is expected to be more flexible and could be adjusted to allow drilling in certain subsea fields.

...........they claim in the article that the US flag came ashore in an oil slick from the doomed oil rig......... I think it looks more staged than anything,However that's how they report it in the paper.
An American flag lays in a slick of oil that washed ashore from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico on July 4, 2010 in Gulf Shores, Alabama