M2002.62.44 | View of Quebec, Canada from the Railway Station opposite Quebec, the City

 
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View of Quebec, Canada from the Railway Station opposite Quebec, the City
Cornelius Krieghoff (1815-1872)
1862, 19th century
Ink and watercolour on paper - Lithography
41 x 59.5 cm
Mr. and Mrs. Peter Winkworth
M2002.62.44
© McCord Museum
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Keywords:  Cityscape (3948) , Print (10661)
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Keys to History

For every city like Montreal or Sherbrooke that benefited from the railway's passage, another city was left isolated, on the wrong shore, or far from a railway station. Quebec City is visible on the far shore of the St. Lawrence River. Steamers had to bring goods across the river for transport from the Grand Trunk terminal at Lévis. Quebec City's politicians fought for rail connections and a bridge but their city stagnated as federalist politicians built the Victoria Bridge in Montreal. Quebec City had to wait until 1917 for the construction of its own bridge.

Source : Confederation: The Creation of Canada [Web tour], by Brian J. Young, McGill University (see Links)

  • What

    This view emphasizes Quebec City's vocations and its isolation from rail traffic on the south shore of the St. Lawrence. The citadel, church spires and seminary are reminders of Quebec's military, religious and administrative roles.

  • Where

    The artist has climbed above Lévis, from where the sweep of the St. Lawrence and the beauty of Quebec City on the opposite shore can best be illustrated.

  • When

    Executed in the 1850s, this view gives a strong sense of the diversity of traffic on the river in front of Quebec. The ferry to the train station at Lévis is clearly evident, as are shipping and steam vessels lying at anchor.

  • Who

    Quebec City's politicians fought for rail connections and a bridge but their city stagnated as federalist politicians built the Victoria Bridge in Montreal. Without a bridge, Quebec City could not compete with Montreal as an industrial or commercial centre.