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31 Jan, Tuesday
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Montreal Families

Historical event celebrates horses

It wasn’t too long ago that actual horsepower was what kept our cities and towns moving. Workers, from the milkman to the mailman, relied on horses to carry out their daily duties in some of Quebec’s neighbourhoods up until the 1950s.

This year marks 350 years since France’s King Louis XIV sent horses over to New France, the first stallions and mares to set foot in the colony. Pointe St. Charles museum Maison St. Gabriel is honouring 350 years of the Canadian horse with a host of activities, most notably a procession it’s calling the Grand Cavalcade.

During this event, more than 30 horse-drawn carts will parade through the streets surrounding what used to be the Congrégation de Notre-Dame farm, one of the first farms in the Point, and then will gather around Marguerite-Bourgeoys Park. Carts used by people working in all sorts of professions – the notary, priest and even the firemen – will be represented in the procession. Spectators will be able to peer into the carts and ask the workers about living and working in Quebec in the 1900s.

The parade starts at 1 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 15 at the corner of Wellington and Charlevoix Sts. It will travel north on Charlevoix St., east on Centre St., south on Condé St., and west on Wellington to finish around Marguerite-Bourgeoys Park. The festivities are slated to end around 5 p.m.

For more information, visit the Maison St. Gabriel website at maisonsaint-gabriel.qc.ca or call 514-935-8136.

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