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Lachine Canal (Montreal)

Photography Landscape posted on Oct 05, 2012
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Description


The canal is situated on land originally granted by the King of France to the Sulpician Order. Beginning in 1689, attempts were made by the French Colonial government and several other groups to build a canal that would allow ships to bypass the treacherous Lachine Rapids. After more than 130 years of failure, a consortium that included the young Scottish immigrant John Redpath was successful. John Richardson was Chairman of the Committee of Management of the canal project and its chief engineer was Thomas Brunett. The contractors were Thomas McKay and John Redpath, plus the firms of Thomas Phillips & Andrew White and Abner Bagg & Oliver Wait. Work on the canal commenced on July 17, 1821 under Chief Engineer Thomas Burnett and Construction Engineer John Richardson. The original canal was 14 km. long and had seven locks, each 30 m long, 6m wide and 1.5 m deep. The Lachine Canal which was inaugurated in 1824 and opened to navigation in 1825. The new canal officially opened in 1825, helping turn Montreal into a major port and eventually attracting industry to its banks when the Society of Sulpician Order decided to sell lots. During the 1840s, the Lachine Canal was deepened to allow heavier ships to pass through and hydraulic power was introduced to the industries located on its banks. Through the enlargement of the canal, its use changed from solely a means of avoiding the Lachine rapids to that of an industrial region within Montreal. There were two major effects on the development of Montreal due to the enlargement of the Lachine Canal. The first was that by creating a route that bypassed the Lachine rapids and therefore opened the upper St Lawrence River to navigation, Montreal became a more convenient area for trade, effectively taking away shipping traffic from Quebec City and moving it to Montreal. The second important shift that can be noted through the growth and development of the canal is the creation of industrial suburbs. Before the Lachine Canal, Montreal’s industrial region was located in what would be considered the downtown area. The impact of the Lachine Canal on Montreal during the mid to late 19th century can be seen through the emergence of new working-class neighbourhoods such as Griffintown, St Henri, Pointe St Charles. Furthermore, the population of Montreal grew by over four times between the middle of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century. One of the main reasons behind the growth of the Lachine Canal region was the access to hydraulic power which was provided through the deepening of canal in the 1840s. Throughout the mid to late 19th century, industries all along the banks of canal experienced consistent growth through the access to this energy source. However, by the end of the 19th century, factories began to utilize steam powered factories as opposed to hydraulic power. Although this switch did not initially affect the Lachine canal region in a negative manner, factories were no longer dependent on the canal as an energy source. Industries now had the option of building further and further away from the canal itself, which was also helped by the development of a railway system throughout Montreal’s industrial region. However, while the Lachine Canal proved an enormous boom for Montreal and the Province of Quebec, time would show that for Canada's Maritime Provinces, it was the first major nail in that region's economic coffin. The first enlargements took place between 1843 and 1848, under the supervision of Alfred Barrett. Five new locks, each 61 m long, 13.5 m wide and 2.7 m deep replaced the original seven locks. Thanks Magik

Comments (44)


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MagikUnicorn

5:21PM | Fri, 05 October 2012

Dès le XVIIe siècle, le gouvernement de la colonie française planifie un canal dans la vallée de la rivière Saint-Pierre afin de contourner les rapides de Lachine. La construction est entreprise en 1670. Les sulpiciens de Montréal voulant installer des moulins à farine, leur supérieur, François de Salignac Fénélon, eut l’idée de canaliser le lac à la Loutre pour avoir de l’énergie pour faire tourner les moulins et aussi pour être capable de transporter du matériel d’un point à l’autre en évitant les redoutables rapides. En juin 1689 la construction commença, mais fut arrêtée brusquement en août par une attaque amérindienne. En octobre 1700, Gédéon de Catalogne, un ingénieur, fut engagé pour creuser le canal. Le projet dut être de nouveau abandonné à la suite de la mort de François Dollier de Casson, successeur de Fénelon, qui avait relancé l'idée. Le canal était creusé jusqu’à ce qui est maintenant le Vieux-Montréal. Il y eut encore d’autres tentatives, mais finalement, c'est en 1821, à la suite de la pression des marchands montréalais, que la construction est commencée. Une importante main-d'œuvre, majoritairement constituée de travailleurs d'origine irlandaise, est mise à contribution, et on inaugure le canal en 1825. Le canal compte cinq écluses sur 14,5 km, permettant de franchir une dénivellation de 14 mètres. Sa profondeur est alors de 1,4 mètre. Le canal est doublé en largeur et en profondeur entre 1843 et 1848. La force motrice de son eau est alors commercialisée sous la forme de « lots hydrauliques, » ce qui attire vite diverses industries dans les environs. Cette infrastructure joue ainsi un rôle important pour le développement économique de Montréal, car les entreprises avoisinantes emploient près de 25 000 travailleurs à son apogée. En 1875, le canal est recreusé à son gabarit actuel de 4,3 mètres de profondeur. Relégué au second plan après l'ouverture de la voie maritime du fleuve Saint-Laurent, qui a lieu en 1959, c'est finalement en 1970 que le canal ferme ses portes à la navigation. Le courant déjà amorcé depuis les années 1960, de nombreuses industries ferment leurs portes et près de 20 000 personnes se retrouvent au chômage. Le canal est rouvert pour la navigation de plaisance en 2002.

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Minda

5:37PM | Fri, 05 October 2012

beautiful place and Great info magik..

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greyone

5:42PM | Fri, 05 October 2012

Beautiful capture of this peaceful sight. Happy thanks giving to a fellow Canuck.

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mickeyrony

5:49PM | Fri, 05 October 2012

Une bonne narration et j'adore me promener mais cette année cela n'as pas été`trop fort mon Réal Hiiii Toujours un travail excellent ((5++))

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clbsmiley

5:59PM | Fri, 05 October 2012

What a pretty place and great info! :)

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brycek

6:12PM | Fri, 05 October 2012

Beautiful capture and nice information!!

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barryjeffer

6:17PM | Fri, 05 October 2012

What a fantastic history this place has... thank you for sharing this view of it.

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eekdog

6:19PM | Fri, 05 October 2012

superb info and great shot!

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mikeerson

7:11PM | Fri, 05 October 2012

got out first snow today, just dust really, but have that grey looking sky theat you have on here.

KnightWolverine

8:05PM | Fri, 05 October 2012

Most interesting read and thanks for sharing the capture...Always have room in my head for knowledge...(smiles)..

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Faemike55

8:40PM | Fri, 05 October 2012

In a way they were still dependent in that they still needed water to convert to steam....without the river, there is no water and with no water no steam Great bit of history

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nitegrafix

9:02PM | Fri, 05 October 2012

This is brilliant, really appreciate the back story, you did a great job!

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jocko500

9:03PM | Fri, 05 October 2012

lot of history here. do not look big as today standards. cool looking

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danapommet

9:17PM | Fri, 05 October 2012

A beautiful scene in this photo and an excellent history lesson.

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bakapo

11:00PM | Fri, 05 October 2012

a really pretty place.

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magnus073

11:26PM | Fri, 05 October 2012

Magik, C'est une magnifique photo. Le canal est fantastique et semble responsable de la réussite de Montréal

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renecyberdoc

1:09AM | Sat, 06 October 2012

neat and peaceful place.

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UteBigSmile

1:34AM | Sat, 06 October 2012

Yes, this is a marvelous looking capture dear Real & a great info too!

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sharky_

2:22AM | Sat, 06 October 2012

Interesting info of Canal... Nice shot. Aloha

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Jean_C

2:26AM | Sat, 06 October 2012

Superbe endroit et des informations très intéressantes!

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Leije

2:38AM | Sat, 06 October 2012

Belle photo et merci pour ces infos, Magik !

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jayfar

2:52AM | Sat, 06 October 2012

A lovely shot of this open space Magik.

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jendellas

2:54AM | Sat, 06 October 2012

Wonderful info, I so like learning about where people live. A beautiful capture, thankyou. xx

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odile

4:32AM | Sat, 06 October 2012

Toujours d'intéressantes informations sur ta ville !:)

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flavia49

7:10AM | Sat, 06 October 2012

marvelous image and info

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RodolfoCiminelli

9:32AM | Sat, 06 October 2012

Excellent and beautiful work......!!!!

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erlandpil

9:58AM | Sat, 06 October 2012

Beautiful capture erland

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Flint_Hawk

10:44AM | Sat, 06 October 2012

Interesting information & a lovely place & photo!

bebert

10:55AM | Sat, 06 October 2012

que c'est vert !! dommage qu'il n'y ait pas eu un petit rayon de soleil :)

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Glendaw

12:28PM | Sat, 06 October 2012

What a pretty looking park. Awesome pov.catching the chanel and foreground. Thanks for sharing the wonderful historical information Magik.

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Photograph Details
F Numberf/5.9
MakeOLYMPUS IMAGING CORP.
ModelSP800UZ
Shutter Speed10/600
ISO Speed50
Focal Length6

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