M965.199.7902 | Drums Along the Ottawa.

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Creative Commons License
Drawing, cartoon
Drums Along the Ottawa.
John Collins
About 1954, 20th century
Ink, graphite and opaque white on paper
36.8 x 29.3 cm
Gift of Mr. John Collins - The Gazette
© McCord Museum
Keywords:  Cartoon (19139) , Double taxation (2) , Drawing (18637) , drawing (18379) , Economy (211) , Federal-provincial relations (124) , figure (1849) , Liberal Party of Canada (243) , Louis St-Laurent (9) , male (1608) , Maurice Duplessis (21) , National (64) , Ottawa (90) , Political parties (800) , Political stakes (346) , politics (10928) , Politics (1624) , Québec (427) , Québec or Canada political events (600) , Tax (22) , Union Nationale (90)
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Keys to History

While Québec Premier Maurice Duplessis (defending the fort in the foreground) and Canadian Prime Minister Louis Saint-Laurent (pounding the war drum on the other side of the river) argue over the legitimacy of levying income taxes, the average citizen (Uno Who) has a pretty good idea who will end up paying the bill.

  • What

    From his vantage point in Fort Autonomy (for the defence of provincial autonomy), Duplessis is getting ready to use the weapon of taxation (Tax Gun), depicted as a musket, giving him a distinct advantage over the bows and arrows of his federal adversaries.

  • Where

    This scene is set on the banks of the Ottawa River where it defines the boundary between Québec and Ontario.

  • When

    By adding the caption "A Rare Old Illustration from Collins History of Quebec," the cartoonist is conjuring up the idea of an episode from the history of New France.

  • Who

    Duplessis is attired like a marquis from New France, with a traditional French tricorne hat, whereas Saint-Laurent is dressed like a First Nations warrior.