II-179026 | Frédéric-Liguori Beïque, Montreal, QC, 1910

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Frédéric-Liguori Beïque, Montreal, QC, 1910
Wm. Notman & Son
1910, 20th century
Silver salts on glass - Gelatin dry plate process
17 x 12 cm
Purchase from Associated Screen News Ltd.
© McCord Museum
Keywords:  male (26812) , Photograph (77678) , portrait (53878)
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Keys to History

The French-speaking middle-class continued the ascent it had begun in the 1800s. Economic growth provided it, too, with opportunities to become more prosperous and allowed it to enjoy a higher standard of living. Even if some of its members, such as Louis-Joseph Forget and Frédéric-Liguori Béique, attained positions in the higher spheres of Canadian finance, it was chiefly restricted to medium-sized business, focussing primarily on a Montreal or Quebec market. Businessmen such as Oscar Dufresne (1875-1936), Hormisdas Laporte (1850-1934), Trefflé Berthiaume (1848-1915) and G.-N. Ducharme (1851-1929) played major economic and political roles in Montreal and its surrounding area. The number of small neighbourhood merchants increased with the growth of the city and its population.

  • What

    Béique shows that French Canadians were present in the highest spheres of the Montreal economy. His career testifies to the close ties that existed between law, business and politics.

  • Where

    He lived in a large house he had had built in 1894 on Sherbrooke Street, near Stanley Street, in the heart of Montreal's English upper-class neighbourhood. One of his neighbours was the founder of the Montreal Star, Hugh Graham (1848-1938).

  • When

    From 1899 to 1905, he was president of the Société Saint-Jean-Baptiste of Montreal. He played a major role in a number of SSJB initiatives, including the construction and funding of the Monument National and the establishment of the Caisse nationale d'économie.

  • Who

    Frédéric-Liguori Béique (1845-1933) was a top corporate lawyer. He sat on the boards of a number of companies, including Canadian Pacific and the Banque canadienne nationale. He served as a Liberal senator in Ottawa from 1902.